Project Description

Prevent the city from flooding in case of a cloudburst!

On October 26 and 27, 2018, 33 creative minds came together for the Climate-KIC Climathon in Copenhagen, organized by the SDG Student Ambassadors.  These students and professionals dedicated 24 hours to help solve the local climate challenge Copenhagen is facing: water management in the event of a cloudburst. The event also included different informational and active workshops, as well as a variety of sustainable meals by local providers.

The participants were welcomed at the Student & Innovation House, a soon-to-be innovation hub in Frederiksberg. After presentations on the Climate-KIC Climathon concept, the SDG Student Ambassadors and the location, it was time for the municipality of Copenhagen to present the case. This focused on how to use Bispeparken as a temporary water reservoir in case of a cloudburst, while at the same time enforcing its green and social function in the Bispebjerg neighbourhood all year round. With the help and enthusiasm of facilitator Thor, the participants then formed groups, tried different brainstorming and ideation strategies, learned the basics of business case solving and even quickly tried a first round of pitching their ideas.

However, no one works well on an empty stomach, so Hope Bar came to serve their delicious and sustainable Hope and BBQ quinoa bowls. That was a good start of the working time, in which the participants brainstormed their way to a wide variety of innovative ideas while having mentors from KK, Climate-KIC, COWI, NIRAS and the SDG Student Ambassadors to their assistance.

Before dinner was served, Francesco Rosati from DTU Management Engineering gave a workshop on the business model canvas adapted to sustainability solutions, which the participants could use to evaluate and structure the business potential of their ideas.  The dinner was prepared by One Bowl, a new community kitchen in Copenhagen NV that rescues food from being wasted and wants to serve affordable meals in a friendly atmosphere to everyone. This time, it included a variety of mouth-watering Indian vegan dishes served by a friendly team of volunteers.

After sunset, the six teams continued working furiously on finding that one golden idea and evaluating their progress, but not without an energetic S-shape training by Lotte Müller to establish a good working position and good vibes to get through the night. At midnight, participants were treated to tasty plant-based hotdogs from Plantepølsen, which allowed them to build a classic carrot-based or spicy beetroot-based hotdog with a variety of toppings. With this new energy, teams got ready to rumble their midnight pitches, which allowed them to give and receive valuable feedback and new ideas from their fellow participants to work on for the rest of the night.

On Saturday morning, teams were freshly woken up with morning yoga by Sofie Bygholm. A quick breakfast initiated the team’s last working hours, in which a solution summary, pitch and slide deck needed to be delivered. Although time was pressing, the teams all managed to hand in their ultimate solution to Copenhagen’s cloudburst challenge and prepare a spotless 2-minute pitch. Only the daunting task of pitching and defending in front of the judging panel was left. This judging panel consisted of Ann Lilja and Rosalina Wenningsted-Torgard (Københavns Kommune), Marco Carreira Silva (Climate-KIC), Martin Reinhold (COWI), Francesco Rosati (DTU) and Magnus Schulz (SDG Student Ambassadors), who critically evaluated the potential of these new ideas in both climate, social and business perspectives.

This finally made team ClimEx the winners of the Copenhagen Climathon 2018. They came up with a meandering dry river bed landscape that could store the water volume in case of a cloudburst, while being an attractive, ‘instagrammable’ and educational green space for the rest of the time. Different artistic elements in the park together with a digital platform will show the impacts of climate change and attract locals and tourists to the park to enjoy. Together with Climate-KIC Nordic and Københavns Kommune, the team will follow up to see if their plan could be realized.

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A happy ClimEx

All in all, the enthusiastic participants, engaged partners and sustainable catering made the Copenhagen Climathon 2018 a big success. We very much look forward to creating more sustainable events and a an even bigger Climathon in 2019, so keep an eye on our Facebook page!

Look at ClimEx’s and all the other solutions here