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The 2021 Student Housing Business Innovator Awards are designed to honor excellence in development, architecture/design, sustainable design and development, financing, marketing and promotion and amenities in student housing properties, on- and off-campus. Please read the rules and guidelines below.

Rules For Entry

  • The Student Housing Business Innovator Awards contest is only for student housing projects located in the United States. Categories are open to any U.S.-based university (or housing-related department/entity of a university), university-oriented foundation, privately or publicly held student housing developer, private or publicly-held student housing owner, recognized third party management firm, architect, design firm, contractor, marketing firm, connectivity firm, furniture manufacturer/dealer, lender/financial intermediary, amenity provider, or advertising agency. Your connection to the property must be stated in your entry. Each category lists who is eligible to enter. Please make sure your firm is eligible to enter the category; SHB and France Publications reserve the right to disqualify incorrect entries and retain entry fees.
  • ALL entries must be completed via Student Housing Business’s online entry system, located at awards.studenthousingbusiness.com. Most entries will require uploads or links.
  • A PDF document with narrative and photos (when requested by the entry criteria) is required for every entry. The word count for the narrative, and the number and type of photos is in the entry criteria for each category. The word count for the narrative is strictly adhered to and entries with overage word counts will be disqualified. Our system allows for the uploading of photos separately; this is not necessary. If your photos require a photo credit, please include that along the side of the photos in the PDF. PDF cannot exceed 10MB. Please upload the single PDF (for each entry) inclusive of the narrative and the photos. Please refer to the category you are submitting to ensure that your narrative description meets the objectives of the category. SHB and France Media reserve the right to disqualify incomplete entries and retain entry fees.
  • The narrative and photos should be assimilated into a PDF document. DO NOT SUBMIT PowerPoint, MS Word, or other documents. Only PDFs will be accepted and viewed by judges.
  • Please make sure your entry is complete and meets all of the requirements. SHB and France Publications reserve the right to disqualify incomplete entries and retain entry fees.
  • Eligible properties must have been completed (ready for occupancy) during the period between January 1, 2019 and December 31, 2020.
  • There is no limit to the number of unique entries for a given category.
  • If you believe a second party will enter the same project (such as a co-developer, joint venture partner, architect or contractor), we urge you to coordinate your entry. Credit for an award can be given to multiple parties, however one party will have to submit the entry. We encourage entrants in categories to give credit to other parties in the narrative portion of the entry, where applicable (such as developer listing other key players who assisted in the creation of the project). In the case of two entities entering the same project, Student Housing Business will honor the first submittal and refund the entry fee for the second entrant. One award statue will be awarded per entry; additional award statues will be available for purchase to co-winners.
  • Entries improperly submitted may be rejected. Reasons can include, but are not necessarily limited to: not following instructions; not providing requested information and materials (including online passwords where applicable); or submitting an entry in the wrong category. At the discretion of the judges, entries may be moved to other categories.
  • If a password is required to access all or part of an entry, the entrant must provide a username and password to judges that will remain active until August 1, 2021.
  • All entries become the property of France Publications, Inc., d/b/a France Media, Inc., and all materials may be used in print or digital publications, and for display on-screen in video or slideshow format at an awards ceremony.
  • Projects that have won an Innovator Award in 2020 and are still eligible for the 2021 Innovator Awards under the time window are NOT ELIGIBLE for the SAME category they won in 2020. However, if they meet other entry criteria, they can be submitted for other award categories. For example, if a project won "Best New Development" in 2020, and still meets the project time completion window of January 1, 2019 through December 31, 2020, it is eligible to enter another category in 2021 (e.g, Best Amenities, Best Design, etc.).
  • JUDGING: Each award will be judged by a team with a minimum of five judges. Judges will review each entry according to specific criteria and award points based on a scale of 1 to 10. Judges will score certain characteristics of an entry, and the total scores of all judges will be averaged by the number of judges a particular entry has. For each category, the entry with the highest average score will be awarded. Ties are permitted and will not be re-voted. Judging decisions are final. Entry fees are non-refundable. Judges who are related to an entry will be recused from voting on that entry.
  • JUDGES: There will be a minimum of five judges for each category. Judges will be chosen in May 2021. Judges will vote individually and independent of each other after reviewing the online entries. Student Housing Business and France Media, Inc., reserve the right to alter the composition of the judging groups and/or the number of entries each group judges.
Entry Deadline: APRIL 30, 2021

Entry Fees: $295 per entry ($295 rate applies for every entry submitted).

New For 2021:
  • SHB is pleased to announce a new Innovator award, Best Interior Design, for the Off-Campus category. This Innovator will celebrate how effective interior design can make a difference with residents, leasing and aesthetics. The category is open for submissions from owners, operators, contractors, architects, interior designers and related vendors.
  • The Innovator for "Best Bandwidth/Connectivity Solution" has become "Best Bandwidth/Connectivity/IOT Solution" to include innovative smart home technologies that are being incorporated into student housing facilities.