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Mar 22, 2016
The unique ideas competition "smart urban pioneers" is entering its second round. The jury of five under the patronage of Christian Vollmann, executive board member of the Bundesverband deutsche Startups e.V., has drawn up a shortlist of the ten most promising project ideas. The voting phase is now getting underway. Up to 31 March 2016, everyone has a chance to vote for their favourite at the international online brand magazine "smart magazine" . The shortlisted project ideas cover a spectrum ranging from urban gardening through social networking and urban art to healthy living. The three winners of the poll will present their projects to a broad audience on the international crowdfunding platform Indiegogo in May 2016. In addition to the attained crowdfunding, they will also receive prize money from smart to realise their ideas.
In December 2015 smart launched the ideas competition "smart urban pioneers", which consists of three phases: submission of entries, casting of votes and joint funding. The aim was to identify innovative ideas and projects from Germany, Austria and Switzerland which improve the quality of life in the city. Over 40 urban visionaries from all three countries took part, submitting their ideas up to the end of January via . The jury comprised of renowned international experts then assessed all the projects according to their potential to create added value for cities and their inhabitants. The members of the jury besides Christian Vollmann are Dr Joana Breidenbach (founder of betterplace.org, Berlin), Frank Schmiechen (editor-in-chief of the Gründerszene business magazine, Berlin), Ana S. Barros (architect and Instagram influencer from Vienna), Renat Heuberger (founder and CEO of the South Pole Group, Zurich) and Prof. Dr Marianne Reeb (Daimler Society and Technology Research Group, Stuttgart).
The top ten project submissions chosen by the expert jury are now being put to a worldwide vote in the second phase of the competition. Anyone can vote for their favourite project on smart magazine and share their favourites with friends on the social networks or by email. Each user can vote once for a project every 24 hours.
The prizes on offer: crowdfunding plus a total of 50,000 euros from smart
The three winners of the poll will launch their own crowdfunding campaigns on Indiegogo in May 2016. The aim is to attain a previously defined funding target within four weeks to enable the respective ideas to be turned into reality.
The final rankings of the best three smart urban pioneers will be determined in the final stage by means of a weighted rating principle incorporating the assessment by the expert jury, the number of votes and the success of the crowdfunding campaign. In addition to the attained crowdfunding, smart will also provide the three finalists with financial support: the winning idea will receive 25,000 euros, the runner-up 15,000 euros and the third-placed project 10,000 euros. Realisation of the winning projects – and the competition as a whole – will be accompanied by regular reporting at smart magazine.
The top ten projects up for voting
- City Tree – sustainability project from Dresden
A free-standing, four metre-high construction with special moss cultures planted over an area of 14.5 square metres which cleans the city air in combination with cutting-edge Internet of Things technology. One City Tree filters particulate matter and nitrogen oxide more effectively than 275 trees and reduces the annual CO2 footprint by up to 240 tonnes. Technical extras like a Wifi Hotspot or an E-Bike base station complement the whole. The City Tree was developed by the start-up company Green City Solutions in Dresden.
- Space Catcher – urban space from Heidelberg
This project centres on the idea of turning urbanites from consumers into producers. The "Space Catcher" is a 15 metre-long, transparent PVC bubble which offers space for over 80 people and opportunities of development in the city. The aim is to literally render the city's development potential transparent and to encourage people to lay claim to their urban surroundings and play an active role in shaping urban culture.
- plants & machines – urban farming from Weimar
This small, automated greenhouse enables any city dweller to grow vegetables and herbs at home. It is controlled by smartphone, tablet or PC and reduces the work involved to a minimum. As a result of optimised conditions with regard to nutrient supply, temperature, humidity, CO2 concentrations and light, the yield is up to 50 percent higher per square metre than when growing by conventional means.
- mylike app – social networking from Munich
mylike is the social network for the city's treasures. The user saves their favourite places and shares them with friends or establishes groups to exchange recommendations with like-minded people. The app promotes social networking and encourages people to discover the city anew. Hotels, companies and media can also use it as a mobile concierge to give their customers insider tips as a means of improving their customer service. mylike was developed by a start-up from Munich.
- foodresQ – healthy living from Frankfurt/Main
The smart way to save food and avoid waste: foodresQ is an app which monitors purchased foods via a smart home system, reminds the user of best-before dates and gives tips on the ideal way to store various products. As such, it offers an efficient means of helping to avoid waste and provides for a healthier lifestyle with fresh foods.
- Cabin Spacey – minimal housing from Berlin
Cabin Spacey responds to the growing demand for urban housing combining a very high quality of life and the efficient use of resources with maximum flexibility. The micro-apartment module is equipped with a bathroom, kitchenette and bed. The smallest unit comprises just under 20 square metres. The housing module is easy to transport, simple to install and can be connected to existing infrastructure in next to no time. In this way, urban wasteland, car parks and roofs can be put to use as living space.
- Kiez-Karte – social networking from Berlin
This digital "map of the hood" enables anyone to help shape their part of the city at the push of a button. Designed along similar lines to Google Maps and fed with participatory budgeting data from the Berlin district of Lichtenberg, ideas and suggestions for improvements in the quality of life in the neighbourhood - such as a new zebra crossing outside of a school or an additional cycleway - are forwarded directly to the participatory budgeting organisation, where they are duly rendered transparent.
- Street.Love – social networking from Stuttgart
The Street.Love start-up connects urbanites wishing to experience something together – be it a game of football in the park, playing music at Stuttgart Marienplatz Square or going to the Food Truck for a meal. The event series and community platform shows that having fun in the city, discovering new things, changing one's outlooks and putting fresh areas of potential to use need not cost the earth.
- Urban Affairs – urban art from Berlin
With offerings on three different locations a new type of urban art festival in Berlin in the summer of 2016 has the aim of reclaiming lost urban areas through culture. The programme ranges from art exhibitions through performances, readings and discussions to workshops. Each day of the festival will focus on one topic: city, space, people. Together with the public and local residents, the festival also aims to develop and realise projects designed to make urban life more attractive and to counter the gentrification trend.
- Kaffee ohne Worte (coffee without words) -
social networking from ViennaThis Vienna project supports deaf people in placing orders in a café. It promotes integration and cultural exchange with a starter kit and training in sign language for baristas and café staff.
smart magazine: solutions for current urban challenges
With smart urban pioneers, smart magazine is highlighting its credo "Solutions for today‘s urban challenges" In its continual search for trends, the online magazine features people, projects and products from the fields of mobility, design, technology, urban culture and architecture. This view of urban lifestyle – focusing on the smart brand – is conveyed in modern formats: web films, features, listicles, multimedia digitorials interviews, reports, photo galleries and content cooperation with renowned online portals and blogs.
This all adds up to high-quality editorial storytelling covering a diverse range of subject matter, such as the rebirth of forgotten parts of cities, mountain bikes made of bamboo, high-tech vegetable growing at home, street art or the leading mobility trends of today and tomorrow. Further integral elements of the portal's spectrum are the showcasing of products from smart, exclusive looks behind the scenes and portraits of smart employees. The international smart magazine is available in German, English and French. Italian and Spanish language versions will be launched in April 2016.