The Ether Dome Challenge (EDC) is an open innovation contest seeking solutions to pain points identified by front line staff at MGH. The EDC was developed in partnership with Harvard Business School with the goals to engage staff in the ideation process and to fund projects for implementation. EDC consists of four phases: Ideation, Crowd Voting, Application and Awards.

What is open innovation? Open innovation is a model of collaborative innovation. We encourage all role groups (clinical, administrative, tech, etc.) in the hospital to participate in EDC and facilitate collaboration throughout the competition. By leveraging diverse skill sets we believe we land on the the most relevant pain points and the best solutions. Since the first Ether Dome Challenge in 2014, we have awarded over $150,000 to eight different projects.

Learn about our grant winners

The Ether Dome Challenge: Help us Transform Healthcare

EDC by the Numbers


  • Year 2: 97 Submissions
  • Year 1: 128 Submissions

Crowd Voting:

  • Year 2: 207 Crowd Voters
  • Year 1: 305 Crowd Voters


  • Year 2: 2 Winners
  • Year 1: 6 Winners