United in digital innovation: #EYA17 Winners tackle today’s societal challenges
Cleaning up a city drowning in garbage, supporting people suffering from mental health problems and much more. It was a hard choice for the 24 experts selecting the best of 52 finalists of the European Youth Award (EYA) during the Onsite Jury Meeting in Prishtina, Kosovo. Hosted by the Innovation Centre Kosovo, the EYA Jury Experts met the challenge: 17 winners will be on stage at the EYA Festival in Graz end of November.
The European Youth Award called for innovative projects combining digital innovation with social value. 144 creative applicants from all over Europe and the Union for the Mediterranean stepped into the arena – and 17 passed three evaluation rounds to be the “EYA Winners 2017”.
Different countries, diverse challenges and multiple approaches to solve these societal and socio-cultural problems. What does a solution to improve communication, even across different languages, between teachers, pupils and parents look like? From skill sharing to intelligent cargo-sharing systems, from integration platforms to clean city solutions, each #EYA Winning project finds its very own way to combine content creativity, digital implementation and social entrepreneurship smartly and to make a notable impact.
For instance, “Erase all Kittens” from United Kingdom (winner in the category “Smart Learning”) tackles the problem of motivating girls to be interested in programming. Combining learning about coding with a girl-friendly design and rewards for implementing code lines while having fun, 120,000 pupils have played the game. “The jury found great pleasure in playing through the demo levels, during which we smiled, we laughed but also learnt along the way. The character design and insanely funny narrative are the key here, and within seconds of play the jury felt a great attachment to this work finding it engaging, inspiring and smile inducing.” summarize Timo Rostedt and Graham Cooper of the EYA Onsite Jury.
The Winner in the Special Category Water was selected by a Special Jury in Graz on October 10. The project “SOS121” – an awareness-raising flood protection system – convinced the jury with its comprehensive approach and potential to scale up. The Know Award – selected by the experts of the Graz-based Know-Center, one of Europe´s leading research centers for data-driven Business & Big Data Analytics – goes to the Syrian project “Daraty” a hardware toolkit designed to teach children the principles of electronics.
The winning projects come from 13 different European countries: Austria (3 projects), Bosnia & Herzegovina, Cyprus, Norway, Germany (2 projects), Kosovo, Montenegro, Morocco, Portugal, Serbia, Spain, Syria, United Kingdom (2 projects).
Among other benefits, the winning projects get a three-month mentorship-program and will be recognized and honored on the international EYA stage at the Winners Event (EYA Festival) in the city of Graz, Austria, from November 29 to December 2. They will pitch their outstanding projects to a multi-stakeholder audience and the EYA Grand Jury will select the Overall Winner based on the winners’ pitches for the sixth time in 2017.
Full list of #EYA17 Winners: https://eu-youthaward.org/winning-projects-2017
Program of the EYA Winners Event (EYA Festival):
Festival Pass order: https://eu-youthaward.org/festival-pass-order/
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In two online jury rounds, one onsite jury and special jury rounds international specialists from all over the world selected 17 winning projects out of 144 submissions. All submissions have been evaluated using creative, digital and social criteria. The online jury was formed by 61 experts from all over Europe; 18 experts acted as onsite jury to select the winning projects. The seven categories – updated and adapted “United Nations Social Development Goals” – of the European Youth Award: Healthy Life, Smart Learning, Connecting Cultures, Go Green, Active Citizenship, Sustainable Economics and the Special Category 2017: Water (blue planet | drinking water | sanitation | water management).
About the European Youth Award (EYA)
Called to life by prof. Peter A. Bruck, honorary chairman of the International Center for New Media, in 2012, the European Youth Award (EYA) is a leading pan-European competition honouring excellence in the use of Internet and mobile applications for social empowerment. Conducted under the patronage of the Council of Europe and the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, EYA is an annual contest motivating young people under the age of 33 to produce socially-valuable digital projects addressing the goals defined by the Council of Europe, Europe 2020 and the UN SDGs.
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