Controlled chaos, that’s what Innovation is all about

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#1

Available in: :gb: English / :ru: Russian


:gb: English version

‘Creativity and Innovation is controlled chaos’ a friend of mine once said and I understood exactly what he meant during the Hack4SocialChange. Over 50 people, creativity, views, actions, pizza, sticky notes, markers, computers, papers, stress, excitement, no sleep and of course a lot of energy drinks represented the controlled chaos during the 36 social hackathon hours.

During the event I had multiple roles, being the organizer, the Edgeryders person on the spot and the emotional support for the participating teams. This event was a very unique and exciting experience for me because it brought different people from different sphere under one roof; social innovators, officials, ambassadors, civil society activist, business owners, and technical guys. It’s too early to discuss the long-term impact this event will have, but I can say that this event accomplished something that I have tried to reach so hard in Belarus: Collaboration and to Show to all people/institutions that can make a difference; that social innovation is happening right in the centre of the society. With the Hack4SocialChange UNDP developed a platform where young people can create and innovative solutions for problems in Belarus AND created a possibility for these solution to be heard by people that can support them in realizing these solutions.

The three winners of Hack4SocialChange will be able in cooperation with UNDP implement their ideas. So who are the big winners of this social Hackathon? The winners in the category of Health are called ‘be friends’ and these guys build in 36 hours a prototype of a mobile application that will be used to fight the stereotypical thoughts about HIV. So basically this app is a game and a test at the same time that will teach you most basic knowledge about HIV and what you can and cannot believe about it. The 2 winners (yes the jury had a hard time to select only one) in the second category of Environmental protection are Greenmaps and Bottle hunter. Greenmaps basically maps all the ecological points in Belarus, from where you can bring your old clothing to where you can buy biological food. Bottle hunter is an application that scans your plastic bottles using the barcode that is on it and by doing this people collect points.




Bottle hunter’s idea was initiated by a doctor with a PHD in philosophy called Vitaly. During the pre-meet up we were a bit anxious about how Vitaly would work on building his rather technical idea by himself. But then he got help from a very cool guy called Sergey, who basically gathered a team of IT guys and formed a great team together with Vitaly that worked together on developing the mobile scanner.

I have made several new contacts with change makers and will write about them in my upcoming blogs. For now I want to finish by saying that I am on a very good track with the social innovation map, people that I am blogging about initiate local communities in different areas representing different levels of society: people with disabilities, local sports communities, entrepreneurs communities, IT communities and many more. Soon I will publish the Social innovators map and their communities!





##:ru: Russian version

«Хаос контролирует творчество и инновации» однажды сказал мой друг, и я поняла, что именно он имел в виду во время Hack4SocialChange. Более 50 человек, творчество, разные точки зрения, действия, пицца, стикеры, маркеры, компьютеры, бумажки, стресс, волнение, отсутствие сна и, конечно, много энергетических напитков – вот что такое 36-ти часовой контролируемый хаос.

В ходе мероприятия я выполняла несколько ролей: организатор, представитель Edgeryders и эмоциональная поддержка для команд-участниц. Это событие стало для меня уникальным и захватывающим опытом, потому что на хаккатоне под одной крышей собрались людей из разных сфер деятельности: социальные инноваторы, представители государственных органов, послы, активные представители гражданского общества, владельцы бизнесов, технические специалисты. Сейчас еще слишком рано, чтобы говорить о долгосрочных результатах хаккатона, но могу сказать, что это событие воплотило в себе то, что я так хотела увидеть в Беларуси - сотрудничество. Hack4SocialChange показал людям, которые могут запускать перемены в обществе, что социальные инновации зарождаются в самом центре нашего общества - в молодежи. Хаккатон Hack4SocialChange стал платформой, которую команда Программы развития ООН создала для того, чтобы молодые люди могли придумать и развить новые инновационные решения реальных проблем в Беларуси. Кроме этого, на Hack4SocialChange новые идеи были услышаны людьми, которые могут поддержать реализацию этих решений.

Три победителя Hack4SocialChange в сотрудничестве с ПРООН смогут воплотить свои идеи в жизнь. Итак, кто же стал победителем большого социального Хаккатона? Победитель в категории «Здравоохранение» команда «Будьте друзьями». За 36 часов ребята разработали прототип мобильного приложения, которое будет использоваться для борьбы со стереотипным мышлением о ВИЧ. Приложение сделано в форме игры и теста, которые позволят получить базовую информацию о ВИЧ, а также узнать о реальных фактах и фактах, в которые сложно поверить. Сразу 2 победителя (да, жюри столкнулось с непростым выбором) в категории «Охрана окружающей среды» - Greenmap и Bottle Hunter. Greenmap – это карта, на которой отмечены все «экологические точки» в Беларуси, начиная с мест, куда вы можете принести свою старую одежду, до магазинов биологических продуктов. Bottle-Hunter - приложение, которое сканирует ваши пластиковые бутылки с помощью штрих-кода, нанесенного на них, и, благодаря этому люди набирают баллы.

Идея, положенная в основу Bottle Hunter, была предложена доктором философии по имени Виталий. Во время предварительной встречи мы немного беспокоились о том, как Виталий самостоятельно будет работать над развитием технической идеи. Однако благодаря отличному парню Сергею, который собрал команду IT-специалистов, вместе с Виталием ребята интенсивно работали над созданием мобильного сканера.

На Хаккатоне я узнала о некоторых новых социальных инноваторах, о которых расскажу в следующих своих блогах. Завершая этот блог, хочу сказать, что нахожусь на верном пути в построении карты социальных инноваций. Люди, о которых я пишу блоги, являются организаторами местных сообществ в различных областях и представляют разные слои общества: люди с ограниченными возможностями, местные спортивные сообщества, предприниматели, IT группы и многие другие. Вскоре я опубликую карту социальных инноваторов и их сообщества!

Check the video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K7w1eCVrVGw


#2

Great summary

Masha, it seems you’re on fire! Indeed, experimenting with a hackathon made of not just tech people hacking is surely valuable, that’s something we aim for with next month’s hackathon in Matera - making it beginner friendly, non-tech person friendly to encourage interesting knowledge mixes… Two things I’m missing:

  1. What are the prizes for the winners of the competition? some kind of support to further develop the ideas, but what kind?

  2. What happens to the bottles after they’re scanned by Bottlehunters? Are they recycled? And what can users do with the points they gather?


#3

Tnx Noemi for your feedback and good Qs.

  1. The price for the winners is a chance to develop their prototype in cooperation with UNDP’s projects. With a maximum of 1500 Dollars grant.

  2. Yes they will get recycled. But the purpose of the app is to make people more aware about this topic. And I think it will also help through data collection. What will happen with the points is still in open… Do you have any nice suggestions?


#4

And that is how you invest effectively!

Great initiative and results! (I’m esp. curious about your mapping results, but will be patient …). – Should I add, European Commission could probably learn a thing or two about organizing a social innovation competition from you folks … they do their own one, and you and UNDP could also learn something from them of course, but about resource efficiency nobody needs to teach you people :smiley: (and not because you even made the event round-the-clock).

And from this I just got on an idea for our CEO @Nadia … when Edgeryders has funds to reinvest into the community (as is the explicit purpose of the Edgeryders company), couldn’t we chip in and fund another winner and prototype in such a competition? Because it seems that in Egypt, Georgia, Belarus etc. 1500 USD can do much more than when spent in Western Europe. (Let me be a bit heretic and add: On Western European air travel companies … .) Or maybe we can even have an Awesome Foundation type of scheme where we fund a community project every month with 1000 bucks?

Also, I’d wish me and my teammate would be done with the Makerfox project funding feature. Edgeryders could use it to fund community projects with Makerfox barter value that it obtains, for example, from ticket “sales” … . So much good stuff to try :slight_smile: We’ll be ready with that for LOTE4 though, and ideas for how to start using it (around LOTE4) are welcome of course …


#5

Yes!

Great idea @Matthias!


#6

Agree!

1500 USD can do wonders for a project in its beginnings in Eastern Europe…

The Awesome Foundation and cummnunity fundraising via donor circles where you would have projects on “auction” seem to be already working, the latter being great at connecting funders with the project initiators and establishing longer term trust relationships.


#7

Working on the mapping. It is somewhat a delicate issue, as you can imagine in a country like Belarus, not all the social initiatives want to become public. They all do very good things but sometimes without having all the license, diploma’s etc. They have to be cautious and not to risk any involvement from people that simply can prevent them from doing what they do. I doubt a bit whether a public mapping will do good for the social innovators, as they usually don’t want to become that visible. This map of social innovators + their communities would serve best as a tool for UNDP to engage citizens (from all spheres) in participating/offering feedback on the development goals that UNDP has set. In the end of October there will be round tables organized where we can utilize the map for the first time and invite the social innovators to participate in these round tables. So thats great = Citizen consultations regarding the development goals!


#8

Understood

Just keep on doing what’s best for your local social innovators, of course. For us curious outsiders from the general public, what’s interesting about this much underreported topic (social innovation in Belarus) is what’s happening, not necesarily who’s doing it or where – these are for UNDP, for their professional network development.

I enjoyed to read your new “Edgeryders from Belarus” post and was surprised to learn there’s an active Drupal community there! (This edgeryders.eu website is also built with Drupal – just as you wrote, it’s a good tool to share knowledge and build communities.)


#9

I don’t see why not.

Makes total sense. Only thing is to remember we want to do this next time opportunity comes around!


#10

Gamified app?

I think this is part of the social contract the App builders would build for users, meaning an implicit deal in the way user participation is framed that makes it feel worthwhile for everyone joining. Example: By helping recycle you are helping make our future more sustainable. You recycle, then you let the world know you recycle by scanning -> hence you move from N00bie to Lead Recycler (bottle hunter can make one think of other stuff:) The more points you collect the better you will be known as an expert in your community. (if they want to gamify this even more, they should probably offer perks for different stages of points collected)

I think @Robert_TrashOut can explain to you better how an app fighting against environmental waste and damage works with its users, why they use it, what they get out of it… he’s part of the Trash Out team encouraging people to map illegal dumps.

re: the mapping - I don’t know what tool you have in mind for it, if it’s actual mapping or simply producing a list of projects and people and handing it to UNDP, but I remember @Justyna_Krol, former UNDP team member, did this Smartup map on Ushahidi to map socinn events… I see it’s no longer active though, but the interface was quite nice… if you ever need help…


#11

Awesome write up of the event Masha…

i’m thrilled to see such great uptake and a follow up from our office in Belarus.  i think this is where the devil often is, no, the follow up and ‘handholding’ in a way to make sure the ideas that were built in the first 36 hours see the light of the day moving forward.  @Matthias, cool idea re: chipping in, lets explore if we could jointly go into this type of a venture provided there are quality ideas to take up!


#12

@ElaMi5, cool idea of you to explore this type of venture together, I completely didn’t expect that to happen :slight_smile: :slight_smile: Should we fork out a bit of time in Matera around LOTE4 to discuss this, with who else is interested in this? In addition to helping bright grassroots innovators get their projects off the ground, an attractive aspect for Edgeryders is that we can connect the new projects with input and collaborators from our community as we usually do, and that we’d get a good deal of visibility of course.

I’m sure there are quality ideas out there … the question is how to find them and help them improve where necessary. A model I like for this is for example Goteo Cloudfunding: crowdfunding that is done in a co-financing way shared between “the crowd” and institutional backers (your organization, and Edgeryders “chipping in”). So “the crowd” curates ideas by voting them with their money above the campaign’s funding threshold or not, and the institutional backer catalyzes this process by adding, for example, one Dollar for every Dollar that the crowd donates to a project. (@Perulera could explain all this much better if we ask politely … wink.)


#13

On Cloudfunding as our formula to promote matchfunding 4 commons

Hi all,

Thank you for mention ir, @Matthias. Here I leave an article explaining this model: https://goteo.org/blog/3317

Cheers,

María.