Call for ideas: New impulses for better cities

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Fraunhofer Conference offers idea platform for the city of the future

What does the city of the future look like? Start-ups, cities and students will present their best ideas to prominent representatives from communities, politics, industry and research at the Fraunhofer Urban Futures Conference in Berlin on November 25 and 26, 2015. An “idea-pitch” event will determine the top three innovations.

Global developments such as population growth, climate change, urbanization, increasing energy and mobility needs as well as resource shortages are posing cities with new challenges. At Fraunhofer’s “Urban Futures – Innovations, strategies and processes for the city of the future” conference, to be held in Berlin on November 25 and 26, experts from communities, politics, industry and academia will discuss key success factors for urban transformation.

Pioneer spirit required – “idea pitch” event seeks creative concepts

As well as presenting unique and visionary city planning projects at the conference, Fraunhofer IAO is also seeking out totally new concepts and ideas for revolutionary products, technologies or methods with its call for ideas. Students, start-ups, communities, innovation agencies, creatives and SMEs are invited to participate in the city of the future ideas competition. Concepts are to address one of the established innovation categories – for example, social, design, technical, or process-oriented – and must be submitted by October 30, 2015. The teams behind the top ten concept sketches submitted will then have the opportunity to present their idea to some 400 guests in an elevator pitch on the first night of the conference. The top three innovators will receive the “Best Idea Award.”

Cross-disciplinary exchange for the city of the future

A prominent audience will be in attendance for the competition participants, with keynote speeches on approaches for the city of the future delivered by Prof. Dr. Alexander Verl, Executive Vice President Technology Marketing and Business Models for the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft, Prof. Dr. Wilhelm Bauer, director of Fraunhofer IAO, and Prof. Dr. Günter Bachmann, General Secretary of the German Council for Sustainable Development. “Our aim with this conference is to facilitate a cross-disciplinary dialog between all the relevant players in the city-of-the–future debate,” says Wilhelm Bauer, who heads up the Morgenstadt initiative at Fraunhofer IAO. “In the future, politicians, municipal authorities, industrial players, academics and NGO representatives have to pull together even more to ensure we’re all following a common line.” The second day of the event provides conference guests with various formats and topic areas related to the city of the future to help them network, find project partners, and generate new ideas.