• Innovation nation

    Innovation nation

    The City of Johannesburg is calling on small businesses and innovators to collaborate on smart city solutions to deal with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

    The Smart City Innovation Challenge aims to find and develop digital technology solutions in response to the urban and community obstacles the municipality is facing during the pandemic, which has severely impacted overcrowded areas that already lack basic services.

    The challenge, which is a collaboration between the municipality’s Smart City Office, Tshimologong Innovation Precinct, the Fak’ugesi African Digital Innovation Festival and the Joburg Centre for Software Engineering partnership, asks entrants to focus on smart technology that either saves lives or supports livelihoods. The former category covers innovations that can detect, track and predict the spread of the virus, as well as solutions to improving healthcare and safety. The latter may include ideas related to entrepreneurial support or improving food security.

    Prizes include a ZAR100 000 prototyping grant and partnership development, as well as a virtual bootcamp with access to mentors.

    Through this project, the city hopes to strengthen its interdepartmental communication and co-ordination during crisis management; improve its management of access to and distribution of crucial resources throughout the city; and bolster knowledge and data support for COVID crisis operations and community-engagement platforms, among others.

    The solutions can feature augmented reality, AI, robotics, the internet of things, drones, blockchain, data collection, analysis and visualisation, as well as gamification, which includes activities and processes using gaming elements to solve problems.

    The Tshimologong Innovation Precinct will provide an online information session on 15 July.

    14 July 2020
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