Hackathon - 17/18 Nov 2017 - Kick up a Social Storm and Get Involved!

04 Aug 2017

LSBM was visited on Friday 4 August by Helen Ots (pictured centre), co-founder of Social Storm, a collaborative project aimed at facilitating the connection and collaboration of young people, businesses, and non-profit organisations. The way that Social Storm has principally engaged in their worthwhile endeavour, to find innovative solutions to global issues, is through their annual 24 hour 'Hackathon' event which over the last three years has enabled creative, passionate young future leaders to have an intense, fun and immersive dip into enterprise entrepreneurship in the space of 24 hours!

Social Storm began in 2014 as a partnership of enterprise educators, to bring together universities for Global Entrepreneurship Week, and has dramatically grown over the last few years as follows:

  • 2014 - 8 Universities from 5 Countries and 100+ young people (Forming 20 teams with 20 solutions to tackle the lack of access to primary education, a UN Millennial Development Goal)
  • 2015 - 14 universities, across 3 countries with over 170 student participants (The teams tackled 3 UN Global Goals; internet for all, gender equality and renewable energy)
  • 2016 - 20 universities, across 7 countries, and over 250 students (Tackling sustainable housing and secure food supply chains) 

This year, over the weekend of 17/18 November 2017, Social Storm are aiming to be even bigger, better and more impactful, with the help of LSBM!

Arif Zaman, Deputy Director, Centre for Research and Enterprise at LSBM (pictured left) is now on the team of Social Storm, and aided by Cal Courtney, Head of Student Engagement, Wellbeing and Success at LSBM and the Student Guild Team (Student President-Elect Delon Jones is pictured to the right) we are excited to be part of the ongoing development of Social Storm and actively encourage LSBM students to take part.

This year the two areas that will be being tackled with student drive, ingenuity, coffee and sleepless nights are:

  • 1/ Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable (SDG 11)
  • 2/ Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts (SDG 13)

The way this will broadly work is that participants will first decide which of the two areas above that they want to tackle. They will then be split up into two's in each location with people who want to tackle the same issue, and then will be randomly gathered into teams of six, hopefully spanning three countries (2 in each).  Their task, in line with Global Entrepreneurship Week, will be to come up with sustainable social entrepreneurship business ideas that can help to creatively solve a small part of the (admittedly huge areas) under discussion.

The topics are left broad on purpose, as this is an exercise in creativity as well as collaboration, and the international flavour of the event, as well as the hectic nature of using all kinds of new technologies to communicate with your teammates (who are most likely at least one ocean apart) makes this a not-to-be-missed event for anyone who yearns to really get stuck in and start forging the action-dialogue of the future for the social entrepreneurship agenda.

Teams will be required to come up with a 3-minute pitch and a video that explains their final concept and will be fully-supported throughout by mentors and participating institutions. The final pitches and videos will be judged by a prestigious panel of six judges who will assess what has been achieved, and award the winners prizes!

This event promises to be enormous fun, challenging and very worthwhile. The kind of event you will think back fondly on when your university days are done, and you marvel at the energy you once had to survive 24 hours without sleep and constant thought about how to solve some big problems by YOUR actions.

You can read more about this years event here - http://www.globalsocialstorm.org/social-storm-2017.html

If you an LSBM student who is excited at the thought of engaging actively in an event that gives so much not just to you, but the wider community, then you can contact Cal Courtney at cal.courtney@lsbm.ac.uk or Arif Zaman at arif.zaman@lsbm.ac.uk to talk about how you can get involved (the event also needs mentors, so if you are a staff member who wants to help young people to find solutions to societies problems then Cal and Arif would also love to hear from you).


Stuart Brown
Media and Content Manager

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