Following a passionately competitive weekend of programing, learning, and innovating, team ‘Coders for the Environment’ finished first-place in the Egyptian chapter of the global social coding competition, ‘Reboot the Earth’.
Their winning tech solution, ‘G-Beetle’, will receive its award alongside fellow finalist teams from the United Nations Technology Innovation Labs (UNTILs) in India, Malaysia, Germany, Finland and the USA at the Climate Action Summit in New York City on September 23, 2019.
‘G-Beetle’ is a mobile application that communicates essential information and recommendations to farmers based on data collected via sensors on the ‘beetle’, a tiny movable car designed to measure water consumption and crop temperature across a field.
Their first place prize includes sponsored travel by SAP for a selected team member, Karima Waly on behalf of her colleagues, Loay Khalid, Mohamed Mostafa, Mohamed Adel, and Aya El Sisy. Karima’s trip to New York marks the launch of their incubation programme at UNTIL through a dedicated agenda of meetings and sessions with specialists during their trip.
This team of young environmental activist will regroup in Cairo where they will balance their studies at Zewail University for Science and Technology and developing ‘G-Beetle’ further to apply to showcase it at the World Economic Forum in Davos in January 2020.
The shortlisted teams raced against time over the weekend to develop a proof of concept prototype using real data inputs on weather, soil temperature, wind speed, and other variables provided in collaboration with the Climate Change Information Center and Renewable Energy (CCICRE). Teams were also presented with an alternative challenge that seeks innovations towards the country’s circular economy strategy to propel the sustainable use of plastic resources.
The top 3 final solutions were also awarded acceleration support in from Technology Innovation Entrepreneurship Center (TIEC), each valued at 15,000 LE. Runner-up solution, ‘Revive’, is a mobile application that allows environmental specialists to leverage gamification techniques to influence behavior towards sustainable consumption. The third-place solution, ‘IOP’, utilizes internet of things (IoT) technology on plants with an integrated hardware and software system which provides ideal conditions for growth through an embedded smart irrigation system.
Engineer Hala El Gohary, CEO of the Information Technology Industry Development Agency (ITIDA), delivered the keynote speech during the closing ceremony. She commended the creativity the teams exhibited in their solutions and affirmed the importance of mobilizing to develop climate action solutions.
Specialized mentors in technology, entrepreneurship, climate change, and innovation were recruited to guide and assess the tech solutions. The mentors played an essential role in determining the twelve shortlisted teams that pitched the panel of esteemed judges from the leadership of TIEC, SAP, CCICRE, and Yomken. The teams also participated in professional workshops throughout the weekend including innovation and creativity activities, as well as sessions on business models and prototyping, user-experience and pitching best-practices.
Reboot the Earth is a global social coding competition under the auspices of the United Nations to create technology solutions that address the current climate crisis. In Egypt, the event was co-organized by UNTIL and TIEC on August 22-24, 2019 in Smart Village. The challenge is globally co-organized by the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth and the UN Office of ICT, and sponsored by SAP and Deloitte.
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UN Technology Innovation Lab – Egypt
Raghda Elmeligy, Communications Specialist
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