RETHINK CREATIVE MARATHON: Rethinking how the city works and lives

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THE CHALLENGE

In collaboration with iNovum, NGO for developing the technology in Macedonia, we got the chance to organize a creative marathon that will engage young people into educational and creative work during the IT Novum 2018. Having in mind that the smart city concept is quite popular in the past few years, the initial question that formed our challenge was: Can Skopje become a smart city? Furthermore, we wanted to find creative solutions for implementing the smart city concept, focusing on alternative sources of energy, eco- living, safety, etc. After all, the modern city of the future, powered by AI and IoT should be smart, functional, eco- friendly and significantly safer.


GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

  • Raising awareness for the concept of smart city

  • Engage young people in creative and educational event

  • Promote entrepreneurial spirit and motivate young people

  • Defining the existing problems of the city and finding promising and creative solutions for those problems


PROCESS AND INSIGHTS

We organized Rethink- Smart cities: Rethinking how the city works and lives. By active marketing strategy we reached the audiences and raised the awareness about the event, its goals and mission. We contacted Macedonian experts and entrepreneurs who were speakers at the inaugural conference of the event, which covered topics related to the smart city concept: Online Payments, Marketing Communications in smart city projects, Government and modern cities of the future, Youth e-participation, etc. We appointed mentors and entrepreneurs, experts in the fields of engineering, marketing, finance and architecture, who helped the teams in creating the solutions. We engaged facilitators who were leading the teams in the process from ideas to solutions, through brainstorming, preparing lean canvases and prototyping. We formed an expert jury that chose the winning teams of the creative marathon.


 
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DELIVERABLES

The three-day creative marathon involved 90 participants (from 120+ applicants), young people grouped into multidisciplinary teams, who created solutions for the future smart city of Skopje with the help of facilitators and excellent mentors. The event educated massive audiences about the importance of the smart city concept for the future of the urban living and raised awareness about the importance of changes and future- oriented perspectives regarding Skopje as a smart city, especially focusing on the importance of alternative resources.

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As a result, the participating teams came up with 18 creative solutions, and the three awarded solutions are the following:

1st place: the team presented paving slabs that convert energy from people's footsteps into small amounts of electrical power.

2nd place: aquaponics system used in an urban agriculture setting on residential roofs.

3d place: The team that presented the solution for waste- selection by using smart bins and informative platform about recycling, Skopje is Recycling.

All of these solutions have the potential to develop into successful start-ups and to be pioneers in implementing the smart city concept in Skopje.

 
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