European Young Innovators Festival 2022/23
Part 1: Online Nov 30, 2022
The European Young Innovators Festival brings together and highlights the achievements of young digital impact innovators from all over Europe. The program highlights approaches dealing with the global challenges ahead – may it be a pandemic, a war at the borders of Europe, the climate crisis or accessibility gaps.
“The European Young Innovators Festival has a long tradition of bringing together young people from all around Europe to connect and to build networks – and use technology for a good social purpose.”
Peter A. Bruck, Chairperson of WSA
Panel 1: Hack the crises. European ways. - European values and solidarity during crises
Crisis follows crisis. After Covid hit hard over the last years, solutions are needed to deal with climate change, an armed conflict at the European borders and digital threats to democracy. While looking at these multi-faceted disasters, the actions taken by the European society to mitigate the crises are not enough. Four panelists, coming from different backgrounds, together with moderator Peter A. Bruck, WSA chairperson, pointed out the need to motivate and collaborate on a European level.
“The world is not a good place by itself, we have to engage with it to make it a place we want to live in.”
Maximilian Lakitsch, Conflict – Peace – Democracy Cluster, University of Graz (AUT) declares the necessity for action.
„Most important is to rebuild a safe feeling by stating, You are safe here and welcome!”
Barbara Domaradzka, MOST Foundation (POL) talking about requirements for Ukrainian startup founders emigrating to Poland.
“You will always get resistance when you speak your mind.”
Tanja Wehsely, CEO Volkshilfe Wien (AUT) encourages young people to speak their mind.
"The best advice to the youth is probably: Just keep going! Move on! Don’t stop!”
Artem Kornetskyy, CEO School Mindful Entrepreneurship (UKR) sharing his thoughts from Kiev.
Panel 2: Creative Industries driving social change
In cooperation with EIT Culture & Creativity
The intersection of the Creative Industries and culture play a vital role in finding the right technologies and methodologies to raise awareness and support social causes. The intervention of creative and cultural industries and their strategies open possibilities to encounter the current crises.
Classic conventions are overthrown, causing discrepancies - may it be art used for protest as in young climate activists throwing food on famous paintings - or social media using fake news and click baits for making profit. To address these discrepancies, a sharpened focus on technology and its use is needed.
“I think about technology as a character, as another person that is creating. The moment you start talking about technology as an enabler, it changes the dynamics.”
Tupac Martir, Artist (PRT) strongly recommends a change of perspective on technology.
“The paradox of technological advancement is the very profound democratization of access to technology and distribution models on the one hand, but creative inequality on the other. This is one of the raptures we have to deal with. Technological advance is not making the world better without cultural progress and a humanistic value system.”
Zora Jaurová, President at Creative Industry Forum (SVK), is trying to deal with the raptures.
"Basically, we have to think how not to create invasive and offensive message by imposing the technology. Let’s create a dialogue between the digital and the analogue world to get this immersive approach.”
Maja Lalic, Mikser (SRB) points out the advantage of dialogue.
"We have the possibility to support a new culture of innovation which is also about social impact and the non-profit side. It needs a strategic objective for society to explicitly say, our perspective on innovation is holistic.”
Bernd Fesel, Interim CEO EIT Culture & Creativity (AUT) propagates a holistic approach on innovation.
Both panels brought up current problems for the world community to solve with hints how to change one’s own perspective and interpret possible solutions.
More inspiration was now to come with the innovation pitches by the European Young Innovators 2022. The 15 winners all have their passion for a better tomorrow in common, presented in form of outstanding digital solutions tackling the current crises and creating new possibilities.
Topics ranged from a platform for Ukrainian migrants, a digital memorial, and the increase of parliamentary transparency over fighting the climate crisis by reducing microplastics or provide zero waste oat milk to new ways to increase inclusion.
What’s next? From now until April 2023 webinars, mentoring sessions and pitch training will be provided to the European Young Innovators 2022, before everyone meets at the European Young Innovators Festival in Graz, April 26-28, 2023.
Want to sneak into last year's festival? Here you go: