The Langer Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurial Excellence | AIChE

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The Langer Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurial Excellence

In honor of Bob Langer’s pioneering spirit, each recipient of a Langer Prize will be awarded an unrestricted grant up to $100,000 as seed funding, which will enable them to pursue “blue-sky” ideas that may lead to significant innovations. Recipients will become part of a network of Langer Fellows, with access to, and support from, some of the industry’s foremost experts in innovation and entrepreneurship. 


The purpose of this grant is to encourage creative individuals to follow an entrepreneurial path, creating a cadre of young researchers skilled in tackling high-risk, high-impact challenges within a wide-range of industries. The Prize aims to support individuals in the early stages of their independent careers, provides an unrestricted grant to enable creative researchers and engineering entrepreneurs to tackle high-risk, high-impact challenges with the potential of achieving game-changing innovations.

Although applicants are reviewed for their accomplishments, the Langer Prize Fellowship is not a lifetime achievement award, but rather an investment in an individual’s potential and interest in entrepreneurial endeavors.

This prize will reside within AIChE’s Center for Innovation and Entrepreneuring Excellence (CIEE) and governance of prize will be overseen by a selection committee reporting to the Executive Committee of the AIChE Foundation.

Criteria for the Selection of Langer Fellows:

  • A truly innovative idea or original approach
  • A reasonable probability of a future technological application
  • A tangible promise of a valuable contribution to society
DeadlineFebruary 29, 2024
AdministratorsAIChE Foundation
Nomination Instructions

Application Instructions

The application/proposal package should include:

  • a CV
  • a 1000-word description of the challenges confronting the development of their product or process and how these challenges may be overcome in order to bring this new product or process to market
  • the full name and contact information of the three references who will be submitting letters of support.
  • as part of the Langer Prize (the “Award”) process, the recipient is required to sign and return the Award Recipient Certification form upon which the Award is contingent. Please review the form here.

The application package should be sent to and the letters of support should also be sent by the references to the same email address by February 29, 2024. 


  • A bachelor of science degree is required, preferably in chemical engineering or bio-related engineering; an advanced degree preferred.
  • A doctoral degree is preferred but not required. 
  • Recipients must use this fellowship to bridge research ideas to commercialization of a product or process that will create a transformative impact on society.
  • The awardee will be acknowledged at The Langer Prize for Innovation and Entrepreneurial Excellence Award Presentation and Lecture at the Annual Meeting, where they will be expected to present a high level summary of their project.
  • A summary report of the status of the awardee's project should be submitted to the AIChE Foundation by January 15, 2 years after receiving the prize.

Selection process:

Applications are evaluated by a Selection Committee composed of 3 but no more than 5 innovators/entrepreneurs (1 academic/2 industry) who have a proven track record in the evaluation and/or commercialization of products or processes. 

The Selection Committee is appointed by the Executive Committee of the AIChE Foundation. Each appointee shall serve a three-year term, with no more than two rotating off each year in a staggered manner. The Selection Committee makes its final recommendation to the Executive Committee of the AIChE Foundation.

The Executive Committee of the AIChE Foundation shall appoint the Chair of the Selection Committee and the responsibility of the chair will be to assemble the committee members, distribute nomination documentation and oversee the selection process. 

  1. If the chair deems appropriate, a confidential discussion through mail or conference call may be conducted at the beginning of selection. 
  2. Each member has one vote, including the chair.
  3. The chair may elect to have a two round or three round voting, especially in the case that the number of candidates is large.
  4. Personal interviews may be conducted for final selection. 

Langer Prize Application Deadline: February 29th