New Open Innovation Call targeting air quality and urban heat island effect launched in New York City

EIT Climate-KIC in collaboration with The Mayor’s Office of the Chief Technology Officer (MOCTO) in New York, in partnership with Access Cities, yesterday launched the NYC Air Quality and Urban Heat Open Innovation Call for new and innovative ideas, technologies, and approaches to help reduce the negative impacts of urban air pollution and the urban heat island effect.

With this Open Innovation Call, New York City (NYC) intends to pilot a winning solution with the hope that it can scale citywide, particularly in neighbourhoods that disproportionately bear the brunt of these environmental issues.

Bold action required

In New York City alone, air pollution is estimated to contribute to more than 2,000 deaths and just under 6,000 emergency room visits and hospitalisations each year. At the same time, NYC annually experiences an average of 450 heat-related emergency department visits, 150 heat-related hospital admissions and 13 heat-stroke deaths. The City also averages about 115 excess deaths from natural causes exacerbated by extreme heat annually.

“Our climate crisis demands bold action and collaboration as we seek to secure a liveable future for coming generations”

said Daniel Zarrilli, NYC’s Chief Climate Policy Advisor and OneNYC Director. “This Open Innovation Call is exactly the type of effort that is crucial to achieving OneNYC, the city’s Green New Deal. We look forward to identifying and deploying new technologies as we continue building a strong and fair city and confront our climate crisis”, he continued.

Parallel call with Copenhagen

Underlining that the Access Cities program is about finding and sharing solutions to similar challenges that cities face, this competition is designed as a parallel Open Innovation Call between New York City and Denmark’s capital city Copenhagen. The Copenhagen part of the Open Innovation Call will be launched after the summer.

“Copenhagen has benefited a lot from collaborating with other progressive cities, sharing our solutions and concerns as we are faced with similar challenges. Although we are a relatively green city, air quality is also a huge challenge for us, and if we look at future temperature rise predictions caused by climate change, we have to start future proofing our city now against increasing urban heat island impacts”, said Lykke Leonardsen, Program Director, Resilient and Sustainable City Solutions, City of Copenhagen.

“The aim of joint Open Innovation Calls is to pool knowledge, experiences and innovation in a way that similar challenges are solved through collaboration, instead of wasting time and resources on individual solutions, as climate challenges in big cities often are of comparable nature”

said Jakob Stolt, Senior Project Manager at EIT Climate-KIC. “That is why we encourage Danish companies to look beyond the local market as we have excellent products and solutions that are sought after elsewhere, in this condition the big American market.”

All invited to submit solutions

True to the nature of an Open Innovation Call, both companies and individuals can apply to the NYC call through two different tracks. Track 1 focuses on products and services whereas Track 2 focuses on urban design. Participants in both tracks will have the opportunity to present their products, services or visions of NYC to an evaluation panel from New York City municipality agencies, academic institutions, and other sustainability and resiliency thought leaders. The winners in both tracks will be offered a range of incentives, which are elaborated in the competition manual.

Competition manual on Access Cities website

Up to five finalists in each track will be selected to present their solutions at a public event on 24 September 2019 during NYC Climate Week. The winners will be announced at the end of the pitch presentations.

The winning team from Track 1 will have the opportunity to discuss implementing a pilot of the solution with the City. The winning team from Track 2 will have the opportunity to present their concept at an Archtober event in NYC and have a one-on-one meeting with the NYC Department of City Planning’s Chief Urban Designer to discuss their concept.

Selected finalists will have the opportunity to receive financial vetting and potential investment opportunity from Perl Street and a selected finalist will receive an interview for the Urban X Cohort 07.

Apply now – deadline 15 July 2019

Register for the webinar – 2 July 2019

Important competition dates:

2 July 2019 Informational Webinar
15 July 2019 Deadline for Submission
26 August 2019 Finalists Announced
9 September 2019 Finalists Submit Proposals
19 September 2019 Finalists Presentations and Q&A (closed door)
24 September 2019 Final Pitch and Winner Announcement

 

About the City of New York Mayor’s Office of the Chief Technology Officer

The Mayor’s Office of the CTO is led by the New York City Chief Technology Officer. We’re making broadband, smart city technologies, digital services, and the tech industry work for all New Yorkers. Learn more at NYC.gov/cto.

About Access Cities

Access Cities is an international, public-private program, which aims to strengthen sustainable urban development in five progressive cities – New York, Singapore, Munich and the Danish cities of Copenhagen and Aarhus. The project connects stakeholders working with sustainable urban development in the pursuit of game-changing solutions to common issues confronting cities.

Access Cities is funded by the Danish Industry Foundation and co-financed by State of Green (program lead), the Confederation of Danish Industry, Quercus Group, EIT Climate-KIC, the City of Copenhagen and the City of Aarhus. Learn more at accesscities.org.

For more information, please contact EIT Climate-KIC or Danish Cleantech Hub.

 
Location
New York
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