Nominations for the 2018 Startup Canada Awards are open until April 3, 2018 at 11.59 PT.

Adjudication Committee


The Startup Canada Awards are adjudicated by some of Canada's leading entrepreneurs and public figures. The Preliminary Adjudication Committee shortlists candidates. A Regional Adjudication Committee is appointed for the regional events to evaluate shortlisted candidates in each region.  A National Adjudication Committee is appointed to evaluate national award candidates. Adjudicators play a vital role in reviewing submissions, shortlisting candidates and determining the results of the Awards. Click here to meet the 2018 Adjudicators.

Nomination Deadline


The 2018 nomination deadline is April 3, 2018 at 11:59 PT.

Nomination Questions


Nomination Form Questions for the Startup Canada Awards, by category, can be found here.

Nomination Submission


Event Dates


Information on the Regional and National Startup Canada Awards ceremonies can be found here.

What Needs to Be Included in the Nomination?


The best nominations will demonstrate the nominee's innovation, excellence, impact, and outstanding achievement in advancing Canadian entrepreneurship. Supporting links and video content are encouraged. At least one letter of reference must also be included. If you have any further questions about the application process, please email awards@startupcan.ca.

Do Social Entrepreneurship and Innovation Applicants and Nominees Qualify?


Yes. Individuals, groups and organizations from all industries, sectors and corporate status can apply. For Startup Canada, we promote ENTREPRENEURSHIP with a capital E, inclusive of the entire entrepreneurship community, including those in the social entrepreneurship and innovation sector. The Startup Canada movement is about breaking down silos and celebrating entrepreneurship in whatever form it manifests.




A startup is an organization that is led by (some of) the original founder(s), is less than 5 years old and that has fewer than 100 employees. A startup can be for-profit or not-for-profit.


Leadership is defined as providing the vision, decision making, motivation and inspiration to others for achieving a higher level of excellence and accomplishment. Leaders are individuals, who: 

  • make decisions resulting in entrepreneurial, business and social, success,
  • have a positive influence,
  • are focused on people development,
  • demonstrate emotional intelligence,
  • demonstrate the ability to inspire and motivate others,
  • demonstrate participative leadership,
  • serve as a role model for ethics and integrity,
  • have developed a compelling vision (or more) in the course of their careers,
  • have created environments enabling other people to succeed.


Innovation is a process through which economic and social value is extracted from ideas and knowledge through the generation, development, implementation, utilization and commercialization of new or improved strategies, capabilities, products, services, or processes.

This is evaluated as the presence of new and/or improved approaches to solving entrepreneurial issues along the three main phases of the innovation process: ideation, implementation and internal exploitation or commercialization for achieving tangible results.


Impact is the effect that the applicant has had on the Canadian entrepreneurial ecosystem. This is evaluated as: 

  • Measurable - Applicant efforts have had a direct and certain impact Canadian Entrepreneurial ecosystem.
  • Immediacy - Applicant has a certain immediate impact on the Canadian Entrepreneurial ecosystem. 
  • Duration - Applicant has had, has or will have a sustained durable impact on the Canadian Entrepreneurial ecosystem.
  • Ripple Effect - Applicant has a high likelihood of creating a ripple effect throughout the Canadian Entrepreneurial ecosystem.  
  • Commitment - Applicant has demonstrated a strong commitment to the promotion of entrepreneurship in Canada.

Examples of impact are varied and could include all aspects of the entrepreneurial life cycle of activities include research and development, sustainable development, globalization, investment environment, intellectual capital development and entrepreneurship culture.