EYA – Join the movement! 

EYA is an unique European-wide movement of young innovators who never stop learning, questioning and improving the world we live in. We believe in the power digital technologies can have to create a postive impact on society!

Several activities and events are organized throughout the year and can be found all over Europe! There is its flagship and name-giving initiative: The European Youth Award (EYA contest) and its winners event (EYA Festival); along with coding events (e.g. SHacks (social hackathons), Game Jams), the Youth for Innovation (YFI) programs, mentorship programs and more!

The European Youth Award: We can make the world a better place. Together.

Digital technologies are powerful tools to tackle social challenges people face every day.

We can make the world a better place.


EYA Mission

EYA – The Story

EYA is organised by the International Center for New Media (ICNM), a non-profit organisation located in Salzburg, and has been officialy established since 2012. But the idea of EYA began one year before that, when another, quite similar and global initiative held a festival in Graz, Austria. That event sparked the idea to create a local contest: an European award, which would hold their final event/festival in the same place every year. And so continue to bring young creative minds and international experts together to Graz, Austria.

The city of Graz, a friendly place for entrepreneurs and concepts that improve the world, welcomed the idea and so the first European Youth Award contest was held in 2012, along with the first EYA Festival (winners event) in late Autumn. It began as a simple contest, but new things started to be organized year-by-year:

  • Firstly, EYA initiated Game Jams – coding events with the purpose of creating games with societal benefits.
  • Then the jury was brought from online to on-site, in order to improve the decision making process.
  • The Mentorship program was added, which provides the EYA contest’s winners the ability to learn from experts from their respective fields.
  • Later on, EYA partnered up with universities and created the Youth For Innovation student programs, where students analyse and give feedback to the EYA contest’s winning projects.
  • More recently, the SHacks (social hackathons) were introduced, which are 48h long coding events with the purpose of creating digital solutions with impact on society.

Nowadays, EYA has grown to be much more than simply a contest for innovative digital solutions. EYA is a community, a family, a movement of young change makers from all around Europe. EYA organizes many different programs and events (SHacks, YFI programs, Jury meetings, the Mentorship program and more) and works closely with numerous international partner organisations. Everything EYA does is inspired by the desire to improve the world by supporting digital innovation.

Because that is our Mission.


EYA wouldn’t be possible without our great partners, patrons and supporters:

Group picture of European Youth Award participants