Design and develop an engaging platform for social innovation.

Roket’s work on UpPrize—a purpose-driven Pittsburgh-based entrepreneurial competition—started in the fall of 2014. We partnered with The Forbes Funds and BNY Mellon to bring this competition to market. Our work included brand strategy, naming, identity design, and web design and development for

Design & Development Services

  • Brand Development
  • Identity Design
  • Information Architecture (IA)
  • User Experience Design (UX)
  • User Interface Design (UI)
  • Front-End Development
  • Custom Application Development
  • Responsive Web Design

“We chose the team at Roket because of their impressive reputation in the regional startup community, their impeccable design sense, and their ‘yes, we can do that’ attitude. We needed creative partners with technical competency who could both meet the expectations of our partner’s Fortune 500 global communications team but also be hands on collaborators with us as we launched a new brand and platform from the ground up. We can’t overstate how valuable Roket’s partnership was for us on this project.”

Matthew A. Zieger Former Vice President at The Forbes Funds


The name "UpPrize" evokes visions of improved financial and social opportunities as well as the benefits provided. With the addition of the tagline “Everyone Wins,” we could quickly communicate at a glance the inspirational theme and purpose of the challenge.

Concepts like arts, science, education, health, and nutrition were incorporated into UpPrize’s identity to represent the various missions and themes of our current and future participants. Together, the illustrations form the shape of a circle to represent inclusiveness and collaboration.

UpPrize Brand Book

2015 Results

UpPrize and BNY Mellon awarded a total of $1 million in cash and technical support to for-profit companies with a strong social mission. BNY Mellon’s financial support of the competition also positively impacted their corporate reputation across the world in relation to social finance.

“Roket has become more than just designers, but part of our team, providing ideas and solutions for all parts of the process. They really listen, and their work product is exceptional.”

Kate Dewey President at The Forbes Funds

The Open Innovation Platform

For the second year of the UpPrize competition, Roket was asked to build a platform that would introduce a greater sense of transparency to the competition process, both for participants and the public. It was also a tool to drive community engagement throughout the life of the current competition and beyond.

We developed an open innovation platform that rivaled any other solution in-market. The platform's intuitive user experience, simple yet powerful administrative tools, and forward-thinking architecture are a joy to use and far more cost-effective than the alternatives.

Idea Cards

The "Idea Card” is the central point of interaction for all platform users. The community user can sort the cards to gain access to an idea's details. For administrations, the cards can do much more. With an expanded set of actions, admins are able to edit, approve, feature, or make other updates directly inside each idea card.

Platform Administrator
Admin Dashboard Admin Dashboard
Dynamic Timeline Dynamic Timeline
Messaging and Commenting Messaging and Commenting

User First

The downfall of similar open innovation platforms is often their complexity. From our research, we knew that the competition process—including the timeline, rounds, and judging—could be confusing for participants. To combat this problem, the competition's timeline was placed in an easy-to-access expandable block atop each page. Contextual feedback appears with most user interactions, and competition milestones prompt system emails to inform the users of next steps.

To increase engagement, inside each idea visitors have the option to like, comment, or contact the idea’s creator directly about collaboration, sponsorship, or simply to ask a question.