The Solar Decathlon started in the States, but it was such a great idea that the rest of the world wanted in. Hence Solar Decathlon Europe, where the rest of the world competes "to design and build houses that consume as few natural resources as possible and produce minimum waste products during their life cycle. Particular emphasis is put on reducing energy consumption and on obtaining all the necessary energy from the sun."
Universities from around the world are competing in the challenge, covering ten criteria. TreeHugger was unable to attend, so a tip of the hat is due to Inhabitat here, which has covered it like a blanket.