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The Big Idea

The Big Issue

In 2016, CQUniversity was recognised as the first (and only) Changemaker campus in Australia by Ashoka U, an exclusive global social innovation group, made up of only 30 other high profile education institutions across the world. Ashoka U and these institutions collaborate with each other to break down barriers to institutional change and foster a campus-wide culture of social innovation.

CQUniversity students have the opportunity to become changemakers by participating in The Big Idea national social enterprise competition.

The Big Idea is a social enterprise planning competition between students at participating universities. The Big Idea invites students to develop a concept and business plan for a social enterprise that might become the next ‘Big Issue’.

In 2014, CQUniversity participated in The Big Idea competition for the first time and took out the national award with The Shelter Project, a social enterprise temporary housing design for that uses recycled industrial pallets, and creates opportunities for unemployed Australians to assist with construction while gaining trade-based qualifications.

In 2015, CQUniversity students won the post-graduate stream with their entry The Garden of Earthly Delights. Taken to fruition, this project would see part of Adelaide’s Southern parklands revitalised as a community garden providing flexible and transitional employment, education, and training opportunities for people experiencing homelessness.

As part of CQUniversity’s commitment to engaging with our communities CQUniversity is participating in this competition again in 2017.

Students interested in joining the competition can find more information here.

For more information about CQUniversity’s entry in The Big Idea competition, email

The Big Idea
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Watch the CQUniversity winners of the 2014 competition.