Please send questions not addressed in the FAQ to [email protected] We will update this FAQ from time to time based on the questions asked/answered.

Frequently Asked Questions (Part 1)

Registration & Case Study Deadlines Extended

Our student interns put together an excellent and comprehensive competition summary document. A really helpful “in one place” consolidation of what each student team to successfully complete our 4 step entry process. Bring your magnifying glass, but well worth it: English VersionChinese Version

East Asia: Brunei, Cambodia, Hong Kong SAR, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Macau SAR, Mainland China, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore,

South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Vietnam


What is an Initiative, i.e. project or program? 

An Initiative is a project or program that has demonstrated, proven results in preventing, reducing, repurposing or reusing plastics. An Initiative can be led by a company, an NGO, local government, individuals acting together, or as a public-private-partnership. An Initiative has a leadership team. The Initiative can be already completed, is an annual happening, or is ongoing. What matters most is that the Initiative gets results, and even better, has measurable data, or at least provides clear before/after anecdotal evidence. An Initiative can be big or small. A small Initiative with a clear start, middle and end that yields excellent results could be a great example huge if replicated everywhere in East Asia. A large Initiative that takes a long time to plan, lots of resources and is also a large success is equally valuable.

What constitutes an Initiative is in the team’s eyes. Your goal is to show why it has value to be repeated again and again by others, and how it can be replicate, and what has to happen to do so. Lastly, the Initiative can be for the local community, or broader consumer-focused, or aimed at businesses (industrial or retail), or aimed at local municipalities and their actions. It can focus on educational awareness or real actions. In summary: A team looking to select an Initiative should focus on what was implemented, and the real difference it made.

Why are the Case Study templates different for each theme?

As the focuses on Theme 1 and Theme 2 are slightly different, the respective templates also slightly differ. Each template is designed to help the student team tell the story of the initiative selected as it pertains to the theme selected.

Which theme and initiative should your team choose?

That’s easy – the initiative within one of the two themes that excites your team to showcase it to others in East Asia and the world. You think it deserves the attention.

Should your team interview the stakeholder’s leaders prior to writing the Case Study?

Absolutely. We strongly encourage each team to reach out to the stakeholder’s top leaders to to conduct one or more interviews, as well as engaged artners and community members.  These direct interviews should provide a great source for completing a theme’s application template. 

Is it better to find an amazing local Initiative, or one which is prominent in any general Google Searches, such as “plastic waste solutions in “East Asia” for example?

In 2021, CAPP organized a similar student competition in India ( and we currently are in the middle of Season Two. Based

on the feedback received by student teams from Season One, the most important attribute in selecting a project or program to “make the case” is the personal accessibility of a prominent member of the stakeholder’s organization, and his or her willingness to share information and insights with the student team. While selecting an initiative from a more well-known stakeholder could be advantageous due to the amount of information publicly available, the difficulty may be in finding anyone in the organization willing to talk and share insights. Note, we hope student teams will share their Case Studies with their stakeholder. 

In Season One, teams that selected smaller organizations doing some amazing work found such interactions with one or two key executives to be very rewarding and very insightful.  And usually this translated to much better Case Study submissions and presentations. Please check out to see interviews done by the winning student team with five stakeholders from the winning organizations.

It should be noted, however, that multiple teams can select the same initiative, although it stands to reason that a stakeholder may or may not be as receptive to participating in a second team’s case study interview or a third team.  Thus, the sooner a team makes contact with a stakeholder’s management team to set up an interview, the more likely your team will receive a strong interest to participate.

Will CAPP contact the stakeholder on our behalf?

No and Yes. No, we will not initiative contact with any stakeholder on behalf of a student team. This is your responsibility, and again, from our experiences in our India “Make the Case” competition’s first season, the stakeholders seemed to be receptive. Note: If the stakeholder, on the other hand, is not responsive, then you may want to select another project or program.

Yes, in fact, it is in our plan to reach out to all stakeholder contacts that every team shares with us – from Step 2 (View Register Information). We want to invite these stakeholders to participate in our recruiting week to post internships and any full-time job openings, if any, as well as to let them know what to expect, especially if your team wins, as the potential for positive PR is limitless. Plus, if you are having trouble connecting with the right person, we can reach out and see if we can be helpful. Note: If you complete Step 2 by May 15th, and are having a hard time reaching the stakeholder organization, we will do our best to talk with them to get them to talk with your team asap.

Two resources from Ocean Recovery Alliance 

In January 2020, Ocean Recovery Alliance published a report called “Crafting High-Impact Voluntary Commitments To Reduce and Prevent Marine Litter.” For the report, Ocean Recovery Alliance reviewed 580 public commitments made by global stakeholders from 2014-2018. From these 580 commitments, it developed the PCC Codes (i.e., Plastic Category Classification Code) which is a taxonomy of potential types of Initiatives by stakeholder. The PCC Codes may be helpful in your team in identifying an Initiative to champion.


Who is eligible to participate? From where?

Every team member must be enrolled in a university or graduate school program within East Asia; and select a project or program within East Asia: Brunei, Cambodia, Hong Kong SAR, Indonesia, Japan, Laos, Macau SAR, Mainland China, Malaysia, Mongolia, Myanmar, Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Timor-Leste, Vietnam

What is the information required for registering your team?

Please go to the registration page ( to read the steps required to register and submit your competition entry.

Who is F6S and why is CAPP working with them as a partner?

CAPP has partnered with F6S as they have unique software used primarily for start-up competitions that allow teams to submit their applications and be scored by judges. While not a perfect fit for our non-profit project efforts, they have been terrific in working with us on India’s Make the Case Season Two competition ( and working with us on this competition, too.

What is required by each student team for a full application submission?

A full explanation of the 4-step entry process is detailed at In sum, each team will be required to do the following through’s team submission area: Step 1) Register a team leader and the team; Step 2) Tell us the project or program and stakeholder information your team selected; Step 3) Submit your Plastic Atlas Asia Insights entry and share up to 5 projects or programs that your team had considered (both count in scoring your application); and Step 4) Submit your team’s Case Study. 

Does your team need to select your initiative when initially registering (i.e., Step 1)? 

Not at all. We know finding a project or program that your team feels is a powerful example of an initiative that other stakeholders in East Asia could replicate will require time, effort and research. At Step Two, we will ask each team leader to share the one you selected.

Can a team have more or less than 3 or 4 members? Can they be from multiple universities? 

Teams of 3 or 4 students can be from one university or multiple universities. For the competition, we will only judge teams of 3 or 4 students. Submissions from teams of 1 or 2 students, or 5 or more students will not be eligible. Eligible students are enrolled in university or graduate school programs within East Asia.

Does each team member need to sign up to F6S to be part of a team?

No, each team only needs to designate a Team Leader who will be required to sign up in She or he will sign up for the team, and during the sign-up process, there are a small number of informative questions to answer, including listing each team member, email address and school. We’ll communicate with the team leader throughout the competition.

How many teams will be selected as finalists? 

We will invite the top 4 scoring teams for each Theme to be finalists. In the finals, each team will be allocated time for “make their case” presentations. 3 teams will receive prizes. Please note: We are looking for solid submissions from teams that have clearly put time into presenting their project or program in the best light possible.

What is the Recruiting Week? 

This is a virtual recruiting event for all students who are part of a student team that submits a Case Study by 15 June. We will invite all stakeholders, where a student team is writing about its project or program, to participate in our free Recruiting Week service to be held (date TBD). During this week, these stakeholders may post summer and fall internships and full-time positions to all student teams via the “Make the Case” web site.

This is our first Recruiting Week for one of our student competitions. We are only reaching out to those organizations selected for case studies as a way of giving back to them for their interactions with a student team. It is anticipated that students will view an internship or job post, and reply to a Make the Case competition email address. All CVs and cover letters will be forwarded as-is to the stakeholder who posted the opportunity.

Is there prize money for the winning teams?

Yes. The prize money is listed on the home page. There are also other benefits for participating and being on the overall winning 1st place team, including the opportunity to intern with CAPP.Global and get great personal exposure to produce the East Asia CAPP Conversations (interviewing the winning organizations), similarly to the 1st place student intern team in Season One in India:


What is the Plastic Atlas Asia Edition?

From the site ( “The 2021 Plastic Atlas Asia Edition provides an Asia-focused overview of the plastic waste crisis. It has the hard facts, data and figures to prove that the story of plastic that industry is telling us is a myth. We need urgent and drastic reductions in plastic production and consumption and regulation at the local, national, regional and global level that tackle plastic pollution at the source.”

How will your Insights entry be judged for the $1,000 Prize?

Each team’s entry will be viewed by 3 judges. The scoring will be based on the overall comprehensive and thoughtful answers to each of the questions, and also if your team listed from 3 of 5 projects or programs that your team considered in the separate question area of As there is no right or wrong answers, what will impress the reviewers will be how your answers stand out against the other student teams as reviewers will be reading a number of Insights. Please note: Each answer will be scored; and your entire Insights entry also will be scored, too.


Does your team need to answer all of the questions in a Case Study Template? 

Yes, it will be expected that teams should answer every question in a Theme’s template. If for some reason the question is impossible to answer due to the nature of the Initiative selected, please do your best to answer it. If it does not apply, then feel free to qualify your response and let the reviewer know why not.

How are the top 4 teams per each theme selected to become finalists?

3 expert reviewers will be asked to read and score your team’s Plastic Atlas Asia Insights entry. 3 experts will be asked to read and score your Case Study.  Each Theme will have the same scorecard that will be used by reviewers, and the reviewers will also be asked to share their comments, too, as appropriate, with the Make the Case Working Team, who will make the final selections. 

To select the top 4 teams for each theme, we will add up the cumulative scores of each team’s Plastic Atlas Asia Insight entry and questions (counting for 12.5%); and the Case Study submission (87.5%).   The teams with the 4 highest scores will move to the finals. Please note, however, the Working Team reserves the right, in case of similar point scores or ties, to also take into consideration the subjective comments by the reviewers, too, when selecting the 4 finalists per theme.

How are the competition’s top 3 prize winners for each theme selected? Overall top prize winner selected?

Each theme will have 3 winners: 1st Place, 2nd Place and 3rd Place.

Once the 8 finalists are selected, all teams carry forward their raw Case Study and Plastic Atlas Asia Insights scores. The finals presentation will be scored and this score will be added to these two previous scores, using the following weighted scores as follows:

1) Case Study score (65%)

2) Plastic Atlas Asia Insights score (10%)

3) Finals Presentation score (25%)

In other words, the “live” judging round (presentations by the student teams) will count for 25% of their overall score.

The 3 teams for each theme with the highest combined “weighted” scores will be selected as the 1st Place, 2nd Place and 3rd Place winners. The team with the most points, overall, will be the overall 1st Place Prize winner.


Does your team need to submit an entry into the Community Engagement Prize Award (USD $1,000)?

No. This is entirely optional. This prize award was added on 30 April as a result of extending the deadlines for both team registration and case study submission. To submit an entry, a team would need, in theory, an appropriate amount of time to identify the initiative, contact the leader(s) of the stakeholder involved, set up a time for an interview, and write up their entry. Thus, a team registered near 30 May may not have the time to participate, whereas a team that signed up before April 30 will, in theory, have a month to submit this entry as all teams on 2 May were notified by email about this new competition prize award.

The winner will have the option to present during Finals?

As part of the prize, we will invite the winning team to make a 5-7 minute presentation during the finals (projected to take place during the time the judges are deciding who wins). Entirely optional. We think it will be a good showcase for the team’s members.

If our team does not submit this entry, are we penalized in the Case Study competition?

Absolutely NOT.  This is an independent prize award. There is no penalty for not submitting an entry. Scores from this entry are NOT included in the Case Study competition. In many ways, it is a Bonus Opportunity for teams that have mobilized early. Note: All teams that have registered before 30 April are notified at the same time.


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