This year, the Civic Innovation Eco Challenge will shine a light on how to make Buffalo a better and greener place to live, work, and play. The Civic Innovation Jam was a hands-on workshop on March 9th, 2019 designed for participants to learn the details of the competition, brainstorm solutions, and learn how to best use technology to improve our local community for today and tomorrow. This was an opportunity for those passionate about recycling and sustainability issues and those with advanced technical skills to come together to brainstorm potential technological solutions to real-world problems. Did you miss out on the Jam? Check out this Civic Innovation Jam Brainstorm List for a recap of ideas generated during the event, and be sure to connect on Slack in the #find-a-team channel to meet other like-minded individuals!
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Mayor Byron W. Brown’s Civic Innovation Eco Challenge Powered by AT&T is a competition designed to create sustainability solutions that will benefit the Buffalo community, now, and in the future. The challenge is an opportunity for those passionate about recycling and sustainability issues and those with advanced technical skills to come together and develop innovative solutions to real-world problems the City of Buffalo faces today.
Mayor Brown is passionate about building a city of opportunity for all and using new technologies to improve Buffalo. The mayor is initiating this challenge as a way to meld these two passions together and elevate civic engagement, bring attention to environmental concerns, and demonstrate a practical way in which everyone in Buffalo can play a role in making our city an even better and greener place to live, work and play for the future.
Contestants will be able to work independently or build teams and will be required to build a working prototype of their solution over a two-month development period. Individuals and teams with diverse skills are encouraged to enter. They are also encouraged to engage or include community members who may share or provide insight into issues facing their neighbors and neighborhoods.
AT&T’s partnership with Mayor Byron W. Brown and the City of Buffalo in hosting this innovative challenge grows out of the company’s commitment to advancing technological innovation in New York through the company's multi-billion dollar nationwide investment in the mobile communications network of the future and the company’s dedication to foster local innovation across the Empire State and Western New York by providing opportunities for data scientists, coders, and developers to create new technologies that could positively impact their communities and strengthen the local innovation economy. As an industry leader for decades in data insights, AT&T harnesses the principles of openness and collaboration to accelerate innovation, aligning with the underlying objectives of Mayor Byron W. Brown’s Civic Innovation Eco Challenge Powered by AT&T.
The City of Buffalo, through its Open Data Buffalo program, has partnered with AT&T to produce the Challenge. Additional support is provided by Esri, Modern Disposal, Socrata, Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus and CivicPlus.
Open Data Buffalo is the City of Buffalo, New York's official open data program that makes public information publicly available for free in accessible and machine-readable formats. Open data enhances data-driven decision making, increases transparency, drives internal efficiencies, and fosters innovation. Mayor Byron W. Brown's Civic Innovation Eco Challenge Powered by AT&T is structured to spur this innovation by creating a friendly competition to see what is possible when we, as a city, open our data and engage the local community to develop eco-friendly civic technology.
Mayor Brown's Civic Innovation EcoChallenge Powered by AT&T launches on Wednesday, February 20th, 2019. The City of Buffalo will host a Civic Innovation Jam on Saturday, March 9th, 2019 from 10am - 2:15pm to brainstorm ideas and form teams. While participating in the Civic Innovation Jam and signing up for email updates are highly encouraged, they are not required for entry. Contestants will have until Monday, April 22nd, 2019 @ 11:59:59PM EST to complete a Submission Form and be considered as a finalist.
AT&T, Esri, and Socrata have generously contributed $12,000 in prize money. AT&T will sponsor a 1st place prize of $7,000. 2nd place prize of $2,000, and 3rd place prize of $1,000. Esri will offer a $1,000 side prize for the Best Use of the Esri Platform, and Socrata will provide a $1,000 side prize for the Best Use of Open Data Buffalo.
Entries submitted will be judged on Community Benefit (20%), Creativity/Novelty (20%), User-Friendly Design (20%), Functionality (20%), and Demo/Description (20%). Please see Judging Criteria for additional information.
The goal of the Challenge is to encourage local developers, programmers, computer scientists, and others to build and deliver apps or other sustainable solutions that serve community needs, connect and engage citizens with their governments, and/or show how data and technology can be used to create a higher quality of life for all Buffalonians both today and tomorrow. The challenge encourages innovative thinkers, designers, entrepreneurs and developers to create intuitive and novel solutions that can be utilized to address social, civic, and environmental issues in Buffalo.
After the last day of the Challenge, the seven judges will have approximately two weeks to review all entries. The top three finalists will be notified via phone and e-mail and will be invited to attend a finale ceremony on Wednesday, May 9th, 2019. At least one team member is required to attend the finale ceremony.
The only way to submit an entry is by filling out the online Submission Form. To submit, you have to include the following information: All team members’ names and contact information, a written description of the entry, a summary video (no longer than 3 minutes) of the prototype, a link to or file of a working desktop, mobile, or web app (f an entry is not a software application but a technical device or solution, the description and summary video demonstrating the technology will satisfy this requirement), a link to code, if applicable, and an electronic signature.
In order to participate in the Challenge, at least one team member must be either be a resident of Western New York or a student at a Western New York high school, college, or university. For the purposes of this Challenge, Western New York includes: Erie, Niagara, Chautauqua, Cattaraugus, Genesee, Orleans, Wyoming, Allegany, Monroe, and Livingston counties.
If selected as a finalist (1st- 3rd), at least one member of the team must be available to attend the Grand Finale Prize Announcement the morning of Wednesday, May 9th, 2019.
Follow Mayor Brown on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and share and repost any and all posts related to the Challenge! Use the hashtag #buffaloinnovates on any posts you make about the Challenge. Sign up for email updates and connect on Slack to learn more about the Challenge and then forward any and all updates to your listservs. Be sure to attend the Civic Innovation Jam and encourage friends to join!
AT&T's multi-billion dollar nationwide investment in the mobile communications network of the future answers the growing demand for mobile communications as consumers increasingly rely solely on their smartphones to enhance their education, advance professional careers, organize busy lives, consume entertainment and keep in touch with loved ones in so many ways unimaginable only a few years ago.