Department of Economic Initiatives (DEI)

CONTACT INFORMATION: Our office is open 8:30AM-4:30PM M-F
703-324-5171 TTY 711
12015 Route 50, Suite 510
Fairfax, VA 22033
Rebecca Moudry

Innovators and Disruptors Wanted to Pitch Solutions for  Carbon Neutrality and Clean Energy

Smart City Works and Fairfax County “Pitch and Pilot Competition” Now Open

The Pitch and Pilot: Fairfax County Innovation Challenge is seeking teams to produce high-impact solutions to address carbon neutrality and clean energy in Fairfax County. Sponsored by Fairfax County, Smart City Works, and George Mason the contest will begin with an orientation on September 15 and conclude on October 19 with a public pitch contest. 

The goal of the Challenge is to find, and ultimately pilot, innovative solutions that improve energy efficiency, increase the use of renewable electricity, or accelerate the use of electric vehicles. All teams—from college students and start-ups to entrepreneurs and technologists—are welcome to apply.

A panel of smart city experts will assess each entry based on the significance of innovation; regional impact; practicality and scalability; and equity and inclusivity of their solution.  The winning team will have an opportunity to pilot their solution in Fairfax County, Virginia’s largest county.

Finding answers that increase energy efficiency and shift from a carbon-based to a carbon-neutral economy is a central goal in Fairfax County’s Strategic Plan. The county is courting solutions because the county’s first-ever Community-wide Energy and Climate Action Plan (CECAP) calls for carbon neutrality within the community by 2050, with a 50% cut in carbon emissions by 2030.  This competition is part of a broad suite of clean energy strategies and technologies the county is undertaking to meet these ambitious but achievable goals.

Important dates:
Company Orientation and Q & A
September 15

Deadline to Submit Two-Page Concept
October 03

Review Period
October 04 – 14

Finalist Announcement
October 14

Optional Pitch Support for Finalists
October 14 – 18

Live Pitch Event
October 19, 1-3:30pm


Learn more about the Challenge and register

About the Organizers

Fairfax County is the third largest metro region for technology employment; 1 in 4 jobs (25%) are technology related.  These businesses define cutting edge, delivering a full spectrum of high-end services and solutions to government, industry, healthcare, and consumer markets worldwide. Fairfax County is also a recognized leader in community climate planning and action with an ambitious Community-wide Energy and Climate Action Plan currently in the early stages of implementation. The county is addressing climate concerns from a variety of angles with a major focus on building energy use and transportation, which represent 49% and 44% of local greenhouse gas emissions respectively.   

Smart City Works, Inc. is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that empowers communities to solve urban challenges and improve economic growth through technology innovation. Working with partners in government, universities, businesses, and nonprofits, we lead the Northern Virginia Smart Region Initiative.  The Smart Region Initiative’s goal is to help establish Northern Virginia as a world center of excellence for urban technology innovation, and a destination for digital technology companies to build and grow their businesses. Smart City Works is a proud winner of and is supported by regional innovation and economic development grants from the U.S. Department of Commerce and GO Virginia.




Contact Name
Wendy Lemieux
Fairfax Virtual Assistant