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Innovate for Impact: Siemens Design Challenge

Driving solutions for zero hunger and clean water

Join a global movement to prepare, adapt and respond to the most pressing challenges in food and water. Nurture breakthrough ideas, apply human-centered design to engineer innovative hardware solutions that help achieve the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals by 2030.

Tracks

Zero Hunger Track

Design a postharvest off-grid preservation technology

Problem definition:
A way to reduce the farm-to-table food loss in lower resource settings that lack electricity

Background:
Roughly one third of the food produced in the world for human consumption every year — approximately 1.3 billion tons — is lost or wasted at a cost of roughly US $680 billion in industrialized countries and US $310 billion in developing countries. In developing countries, 40% of losses occur during the post-harvest and processing phases of food production. Food waste contributes up to 70 gigatons of greenhouse gases, or 11 percent of total emissions, therefore directly contributing to Climate Change.

Example of Applications:

  1. Storage
  2. Refrigeration

Prize:
One winner/winning team will be selected for the track. The winner will receive $10,000 USD and the opportunity to meet Siemens USA CEO in person. The winner will be promoted across Siemens USA and Engineering for Change platforms and receive exclusive invitations to industry events.



Clean Water Track

Design a very low-cost, energy-efficient, scalable technology for desalinating brackish water

Problem definition:
A way to remove salt contamination from water that is low-cost and energy-efficient.

Background:
97.5% of water on the Earth contains a high-concentration of salt, making it unsuitable for drinking or farming. By 2030, nearly 35% of the world’s human population will be living in water-stressed countries. Most water that is used for drinking and farming comes from low-salt or salt-free underground sources or surface water. However, due to increasing droughts and saltwater intrusion by rising sea levels brought on by climate change, these water sources are becoming more and more unreliable. Worldwide, engineers and scientists race to develop innovative methods to remove salt from water, but current solutions are extremely energy-intensive and high-cost.

Example of Applications:

  1. Drinking water
  2. Irrigation for farming

Prize:
One winner/winning team will be selected for the track. The winner will receive $10,000 USD and the opportunity to meet Siemens USA CEO in person. The winner will be promoted across Siemens USA and Engineering for Change platforms and receive exclusive invitations to industry events.


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Criteria

Throughout the challenge, you will be asked to:

  • Submit a text based application, explaining the problem area you are addressing and your proposed solution
  • Submit a short (60 seconds maximum) video introducing your team and product concept
  • Research and explore the needs of your end user
  • Design your concept in 3D CAD
  • Iterate your design based on the research you have conducted and provide justification for your decisions
  • Simulate how your product works
  • Submit a video pitch of your proposed solution

Applications open March 4, 2020. Sign-up as an E4C Member for updates!

Design Challenge Submission Checklist

  • Sign-up as a member on the Engineering for Change (E4C) website. It's free!
  • Familiarize yourself with the Resources section, in particular —
    • SDGs and 50 Breakthroughs
    • Tools provided by E4C and Siemens
  • Identify a problem, or opportunity, within one of the two stated challenge tracks above. Consider prior-art and how access, efficiency and/or usability might be improved through design, engineering or manufacturing.
  • Review the Design Parameters document for your selected track. (below)
  • Assemble a team. While individuals may participate by themselves, it is highly beneficial to leverage diverse backgrounds. Team composition will be considered during the judging process.
  • Draft an initial solution concept. Note that you will refine this concept over the course of the challenge. Solutions should address one of the two challenges posted. (At the planning & concept phase, concepts may be explorative, but should start to answer the questions listed in the Design Parameters.)
  • Log in to your Engineering for Change account and download your free license of Siemens Solid Edge 3D CAD software here.

Zero Hunger Track

E4C Membership is required for application. Sign-up for free here.

Only E4C members will gain access to the Innovate for Impact collaboration platform, hosted by Siemens, where they will be able to submit their concepts, collaborate with team members, and get feedback from experts.

E4C Membership is required for application. Sign-up for free here.

Only E4C members will gain access to the Innovate for Impact collaboration platform, hosted by Siemens, where they will be able to submit their concepts, collaborate with team members, and get feedback from experts.


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Resources

Videos

video

About the Sustainable Development Goals

Do you know all 17 SDGs?

video

Tech for Good Case Study

Digitalization and drones transform medical supply delivery

video

E4C Webinar

Tips for designing for adoption and success: spotlight on Agricultural devices

video

E4C Webinar

Design for Impact with Solid Edge 3D Tools

video

Solid Edge Community Training

Tutorial - User Interface introduction

video

Solid Edge Community Training

Tutorial – Basic sketching in Solid Edge

video

Solid Edge Community Training

Access a growing library of Solid Edge tutorial videos

video

Introduction to Engineering for Global Development

E4C's online course prepares newcomers to the practice

Tools

tools

E4C Solutions Library

Search and compare existing essential technologies improving quality of life

tools

50 Breakthroughs

Explore the breakthrough technologies required to achieve the SDGs by 2030

tools

IDEO Design Kit

The Design Kit is a guide to solving problems by applying Human-Centered Design

tools

Household Water Treatment and Safe Storage (HWTS) Knowledge Base

Point-of-use water treatment solutions for emergencies in development contexts, from technology options to implementation best practices.

tools

Tech Applicability Framework

Technology Applicability Framework (TAF) is a decision support tool on the applicability, scalability and sustainability of a specific Water, Sanitation or Hygiene (WASH) technology to provide lasting services in a specific context and on the readiness for its introduction

tools

Global Water Scarcity Atlas

The Global Water Scarcity Atlas provides an introduction to water scarcity and showcases analyses that cover the whole world, based on cutting-edge research.

tools

Introduction to Human-Centered Design for Engineers

This webinar digs deeper into the mindsets, methods, and practices of Human-Centered Design with examples of field-tested approaches for sustainable design.

Articles

article

Best Practices: User Needs and Impact

How to define a strategy focused on user needs and impact

article

Best Practices: Human Centered Design

Practical steps to place people at the center of your research

article

Best Practices: Prototyping and Testing Your Design

How to prototype and test your design

article

Best Practices: Distributing and Scaling Your Technology

Practical tips to distribute and scale your technology

article

Best Practices: Design

Design Your Product for Manufacturability and High Quality

article

E4C eBook

How to Keep Food on the Table in a Changing Climate
Tools for adding value (quality control and safe storage)

article

E4C News

Improving Farms in the World's Drylands, Part 2: New Tools and Challenges

article

E4C News

How to improve the adoption of innovative technology in developing countries


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