presented by Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative

Innovation Awards

Explore this year’s most transformative and forward-thinking digital projects at the Finalist Showcase, then celebrate the winners at the Innovation Awards Ceremony at South By Southwest®.

Innovation Awards – SXSW 2022 – Photo by Ricardo Venegas

Innovation Awards – SXSW 2022 – Photo by Ricardo Venegas

About Innovation Awards


The SXSW Innovation Awards presented by Patient Safety Technology Challenge recognize the most exciting creative developments in the connected world, celebrating the ever-widening variety of technological advancements, achievements and discoveries.

Five Finalists in each category will be chosen to exhibit their projects at the sixth annual Innovation Awards Finalist Showcase during SXSW 2023, where the Finalist Judges will determine the winner in each category and the Best of Show. SXSW audiences attending the Finalist Showcase will also vote to determine the winner of the People’s Choice award. Participation in the Finalist Showcase is required for consideration in all award categories.

A new element for the 2023 SXSW Innovation Awards is the Innovation at Work Awards, presented by The Cru. Formally known as the Mosaic Awards, these awards acknowledge and celebrate exemplary leadership in advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the workplace with a clear, positive impact. See the application for more information about the Innovation at Work Awards.

Winners will be announced and presented their awards at the 25th annual SXSW Innovation Awards Ceremony on the evening of Monday, March 13 at the Austin Convention Center. Winners of the Innovation At Work Awards will also be honored at this March 13 ceremony.

Applications for the 2023 SXSW season are now closed. Applicants will receive an update January 2023. Stay tuned for the Finalists announcement later in the season

SXSW Innovation Awards Presented By Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative

Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative has established the Patient Safety Technology Challenge which is designed to fuel the engagement of students and innovators in creating solutions and envisioning transformational approaches to reduce preventable harm from medical errors and reimagine a vastly safer healthcare system. The initiative will inject patient safety awards into existing local, regional, and national competitions and produce a documentary to help increase awareness of the patient safety crisis.

Pittsburgh Regional Health Initiative - Sponsor of the 2023 SXSW Innovation Awards

2023 Innovation Awards Categories


Artificial Intelligence

The Artificial Intelligence category honors projects that leverage the groundbreaking power of machine learning and AI.


The Audio category is the landing spot for music and sound-related projects, as well as projects that stretch the boundaries of audio-based platforms.

Convergent Gaming

The Convergent Gaming category recognizes outstanding innovation in the space where video games merge with current film, television or pop music content.


The Design category honors forward-thinking projects that span the many facets of product, interface and experience design.

Enterprise DEI Workplace Innovation Award

This category acknowledges and celebrates the exemplary impact and results in advancing company diversity, equity, and inclusion goals.

Health & MedTech

The Health and MedTech category uncovers the best new projects serving wellness and medicine.


The Immersive category is geared to the most exciting new projects in AV, VR, XR and other new forms of storytelling.


The Media category recognizes projects and platforms that improve the way we communicate with each other.

Mid-Size DEI Workplace Innovation Award

The Mid-size DEI Workplace Innovation Award category acknowledges and celebrates the exemplary impact and results in advancing company diversity, equity, and inclusion goals.

Patient Safety Technology

The Patient Safety Technology category recognizes the most innovative technology-enabled solutions focused on one or more of the five leading causes of patient harm: medication errors, patient care, procedural/surgical, infections and diagnostic error.

Rising DEI Workplace Innovator Award

The Rising DEI Workplace Innovator Award category recognizes individuals who regularly go above and beyond what is expected to create a more inclusive, and welcoming workplace.

Social Impact

The Social Impact category spotlights projects that help empower underserved communities around the world.


The Sustainability category focuses on projects that positively address the crisis of climate change.

Urban Infrastructure

The Urban Infrastructure category is home to next-generation solutions to enhance the experience of city life.

2022 Winners


AI & Machine Learning:
Quicktome Next-Gen Insights for Personalized Brain Care – Omniscient Neurotechnology (o8t) (Sydney, Australia)

Health, Med & BioTech:
Pioneering the Future of Allergy Relief – Fluo Labs, Inc. (Chicago, IL)

Innovation in Connecting People:
Proto M – Proto Inc. (formerly known as PORTL) (Los Angeles, CA)

Music & Audio Innovation:
UndercurrentA_DA (Brooklyn, NY)

New Economy:
Hydrogen Energy Release Optimizer (HERO) – Star Scientific, Ltd. (Sydney, Australia)

Robotics & Hardware:
Vulcan, Bulletproof Precision Weeding for Vegetable Farms – FarmWise (San Francisco, CA)

Smart Cities, Transportation & Delivery:
Intelligent Infrastructure Solution – Velodyne Lidar (San Jose, CA)

Social & Culture Impact:
Degree Inclusive – Wunderman Thompson Argentina (Buenos Aires, Argentina)

Speculative Design:
The First-Ever Waste Based Filament – UBQ Materials (Tel Aviv, Israel)

Student Innovation:
Tapis Magique: A Choreomusical Interactive Carpet – MIT Media Labs (Cambridge, MA)

Visual Media Experience:
Un(re)solved – Frontline PBS and Ado Ato Pictures (Brighton, MA)

VR, AR & MR:
Osso VR Surgical Training Platform – Osso VR (San Francisco, CA)

Wearable Tech:

Best in Show:

People’s Choice:
Lift Zones from Comcast – Comcast (Philadelphia, PA)

Innovation Awards Special Recognition:
GiveDirect-Novissi COVID-19 Aid – Government of Togo’s Ministry of Digital Economy & Digital Transformation, GiveDirectly, the Center for Effective Global Action, and Innovations for Poverty Action (Togo, Africa)

David Carr Prize:
Maria Ressa

Hall of Fame:
Nonny de la Peña

"Many of the judges expressed that this year was one of the toughest years to choose between finalists," said SXSW Conference Programmer, Cassandra Kuhn. "It was interesting to see how companies became innovative during the pandemic and how they sought change in a less collaborative world for nearly three years."

Congratulations to all of this year's participants and winners!

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Join us for innovative sessions, film & tv screenings, music showcases, and more at SXSW 2023 from March 10-19 in Austin, TX. Registration and housing are now open.

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