Open Innovation challenge and second SYMPOSIUM

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Innovation Challenge media sponsors:


Our first ever Open Innovation Challenge was a resounding success! Please click here to read the press release about the three winning projects. 

Click here for some pictures from the second symposium where attendees got to pick their favourite "smart" projects. 



Project Background:

Local citizens, non-profits, entrepreneurs will help solve Greater Victoria's real-world challenges and have the chance to win $15,000 in prize money!

Join us March 11th at a public pitch event where the top 10 finalists will compete for your vote to win one of three investments into their project!

On November 25, the South Island Prosperity Project brought together residents, local leaders, First Nations, entrepreneurs and investors for a Smart South Island Symposium public engagement event to think about how we can work together to become a smarter region by pairing digital technology and data together to create 'smart' solutions that will solve our region's top challenges.

The Smart South Island Symposium helped highlight our region's top challenges, and assisted us in defining the key priorities to focus on for our Open Innovation Challenge - a challenge competition inviting the public to submit pilot project ideas that will make the South Island a smarter, more liveable, and more sustainable place. The challenge in underway and final winners will be voted on March 11, 2018, at a free, live audience event, the Open Innovation Symposium. 

challenge highlights

  • The Open Innovation Challenge is free to enter
  • There are two rounds with an initial 2-page proposal due January 28th  
  • The top 10 finalists will be invited to go on to the second round and pitch their pilot project ideas in front of a live audience and panel of expert judges on March 11, 2018
  • There are three $15,000 prizes up for grabs
  • Pitches must demonstrate a deep understanding of how the proposed pilot project will contribute to solving one of the South Island's Five Key Challenge Themes
  • Teams must include at least one Greater Victoria partner

five Key challenge themes

The Open Innovation Challenge is focused on Five Key Challenge Themes that we want to address by using 'smart' solutions (listed in alphabetical order):

  • Economic Resiliency & Inclusion
  • Environmental Health
  • Housing & Affordability
  • Human Health
  • Transportation & Mobility

POTENTIAL focus areas

Potential focus areas may include:

  • Smart Transportation & Mobility                  
  • Smart Health
  • Smart Environment
  • Smart Homes & Buildings
  • Smart Economy
  • Smart Logistics & Manufacturing
  • Smart People & Living
  • Smart Governance, Security & Administration
  • Smart Integrated Grids
  • Internet of Things
  • Open Data


December 1: Open Innovation Challenge Kick-Off

December 15: Information Session (VIATEC, 777 Fort Street, Shaw Conference Room, 11:00 am-12:00 pm)

January 17: Information Session - Royal Roads University, LIC Centre for Dialogue, 1-2 pm) 

January 18: Information Session - (University of Victoria, Sedgewick Building Room A142, 5-6 pm)

January 20: Smart Cities Open House - Hillside Mall, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm 

January 23: Open Innovation Challenge Information Session - Alacrity Foundation, 4-5 pm 

January 28: Two-page pitch submissions due (Midnight PST)

January 29 - Feb 2: Independent committee adjudicates submissions and short-lists  

February 6: Top 10 projects announced (see press release on homepage) teams requested to submit a more detailed proposal and pitch their ideas live at Symposium 2 on March 11, 2018

February 28: Detailed proposals due by 10 finalists 

March 11: Open Innovation Symposium Live Pitch Event (Flury Hall, Bob Wright Building, UVic)

Adjudication Committee Members

  • Tim Walzak - Director, Camosun Initiatives
  • Jamie VanDenbossche - Associate Director, Camosun Innovates
  • Sean McConkey - Manager, Technology Access Centre
  • Rich Burman - Faculty Lead, Camosun Innovates
  • Imtehaze Heerah - Mechanical Engineering Instructor
  • Corrine Michel - Applied Learning Coordinator 

Innovation Challenge proposals were due January 28, 2018, the deadline has now passed