About the Game Changer Challenge

Think your school team has what it takes to solve a real-world wicked problem? Do you want to learn new skills and unlock powerful design thinking tools and processes, while working with leading industry thinkers and having a whole lot of fun along the way?


The design thinking challenge is open to all 2,200+ public schools across the state and centres on exploring tangible solutions for a real-world, wicked problem.

Eighty-four teams across the state will compete in 7 semifinals to help us solve this year's problem, 'How might we use technology to bring everyone in our community closer together?'.

The semifinal winners will be in the running to win the coveted title of Game Changer Champions 2020, to be announced on 1 December.

All ability levels from beginner to advanced are encouraged to apply.

Challenge question

'How might we use technology to bring everyone in our community closer together?'

The size and scope of where you take this real-world wicked problem is defined by your team's imagination!

The challenge

1. Applications (now closed for 2020)

Thank you to all our schools that applied. Our judging panel has now selected teams for the semifinals.

2. Semifinals

Teams have been selected to attend an intensive workshop where they will learn and apply the design thinking process to build on their video application ideas.

Guided by our expert facilitators, the day will consist of teams working through the challenge program to create a tangible solution for this year's real-world problem.

In the afternoon, teams will pitch their ideas to the judging panel who will decide the semifinal winners.

3. Grand final

A panel of education and industry experts will judge the semifinal winners to decide who will be crowned Game Changer Challenge Champions for 2020.

What is design thinking?

Design thinking is a human-centred approach to solving complex problems. Empathy and collaboration are at the heart of design thinking.

The five-step process starts by encouraging problem solvers to walk in the shoes of those experiencing the 'problem' to gain a deeper insight into the challenges and issues they face (empathy).

This knowledge is then used to develop a clear problem statement (define), work on solutions (ideate), turn these solutions into tangible products (prototype) and then see whether the solution will work (test).

Design thinking is not a linear process. With each stage, you make new discoveries that require you to rethink and redefine what you have already done.

Design thinking brings our head, heart and hands together to find innovative solutions to complex problems.

This process can be used over and over again, for small or complex problems.

Key dates



19 August 2020

Applications closed

14 September 2020

Semifinalists announced

27 October 2020

First semifinal

11 November 2020

Last semifinal

1 December 2020

Grand final winners announced via live stream

The great challenges of the future will be solved by today's students. To flourish in this world, they will need to be deep thinkers, critical and reflective, empathetic and creative. The Game Changer Challenge aims to highlight and develop these future-focused skills.
Logos of our nine partners - IBM, KPMG, Microsoft, Telstra, The University of Newcastle, UTS, Forbo, IntraSpace, Lumination, Winc.
Image: Our partners

Contact us

For general enquiries, send an email to GCC@det.nsw.edu.au
For media enquiries, send an email to mediaunit@det.nsw.edu.au

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