Greenlight Pilot

New ideas, new philanthropy

In the movie industry, the ‘Greenlight’ is the process by which the decision is made to produce and finance a movie. Developed over 100 years of Hollywood practice, it resembles a ‘wise crowd’ in its outcomes, producing high quality decisions that are better than individual expert or committee decisions.

We are currently running a Greenlight Pilot program to explore if this process could be applied to decision-making about philanthropic funding. Our hypothesis is that it could attract investment in new and innovative ideas that would not otherwise be funded and stimulate innovation in paediatric medical research. 

Impact through innovation 

The Pilot is being led by Dr David Court, a Board director of Sydney Children’s Hospitals Foundation and the founder of Compton School, Australia’s first business school for creative people. Compton School is partnering with the Foundation to apply their teaching expertise and practical experience of the Greenlight process to address the challenge of finding funding for medical research.

We are excited about the 40 projects that are currently moving through the Greenlight Pilot. Our definition of 'research' is broad and our Class of 2020 includes academic researchers, doctors, nurses, allied health specialists and patient parents. They all have a direct link with Sydney Children's Hospitals Network and many also hold University research and teaching positions. 

During the Pilot we are inviting a broad community of 'Greenlighters' to take part in three rounds of voting, helping our project teams to refine their pitches and helping the Foundation to identify projects that should be prioritised for investment. We will also engage our donors in this process so they can help to further develop the research ideas they are interested in supporting.

Through this unique initiative we are aiming to:

  • unlock new investment for unfunded innovative research ideas
  • engage philanthropists earlier in the process, rather than simply pitching ideas that have already been fully developed
  • enhance the pitching skills of participants and provide them with training, mentoring and networking opportunities
  • deliver learnings and insights to improve the Foundation’s ability to secure ongoing philanthropic funding for paediatric research.

We are no longer accepting projects for the 2020 Pilot.

If would like to discuss investment opportunities or voting as a 'Greenlighter', please get in touch!

For more information, please contact

Sydney Children's Hospitals Foundation raises funds for Sydney Children's Hospital, Randwick , The Children's Hospital at Westmead, Bear Cottage, the Newborn and Paediatric Emergency Transport Service (NETS NSW) and Kids Research