The Lille Creathon is a pressure cooker learning event in English focused on developing innovative projects and lasting ties between the Lille European Metropolis, Belgium and the Netherlands. This year a group of 21 students and young professionals living in the three different territories has been working on prototypes aimed at improving urban health through sport and design. The participants have worked in five teams of four to five members, comprised of diverse teams in terms of disciplines, level of education, territory and gender selected via a call for applications.
During four intensive working days on March 9, 17, 18 and 19, the creathonians were coached by two experts (Ramon Verberne et Adamantia Batistatou) and provided insight into the local Lille territory, the work process behind designing prototypes and the tools to turn creative ideas into business activities. By following a methodology of design thinking, which consists of finding a target audience, identifying their needs, challenging assumptions, creating ideas and trying out solutions, the creathonians have been working on producing prototypes meeting specific needs.
The teams will deliver innovative solutions to improve health conditions in the workplace, promote healthy ageing, physical activity in public spaces, well-being during corona, and tackle loneliness. On Friday March 19 the teams have given a pitch of 10 minutes to present the deliverables of the creathon: a prototype, an infographic and a basic business plan to implement it. The groups have presented their respective projects in front of each other, a jury, and an extended public of involved partners and interested attendees. To assess the project presentations based on a score sheet, a panel of 6 jury members from different professional backgrounds has met virtually on March 19.
The team ‘ActoGather’ has won the contest with their project about transforming the public space to promote physical activity and the sense of community for everyone. A follow-up is planned by the end of Summer to enable the participants to finetune and enhance their projects by visiting local sites of excellence, meeting relevant actors and business support structures.