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Silicon Valley Hackathon Seeks Smart City Solutions

TiE Silicon Valley, a not for profit organization dedicated to "fostering entrepreneurship in the Bay Area and globally," has announced an upcoming hackathon event focused on tackling three real-world issues within the “smart city” space: smart parking, waste disposal management and water access management.

The event will begin in January 2016 and will last for two weeks. Winners will be invited to attend TiECon 2016, TiE's largest annual conference, and will also have an opportunity to win prizes and publicity.

Although cities around the world face similar sustainability and climate change resilience issues, solutions are best sourced locally, TiE says. Governments, academia, developers and corporations all play a role in addressing diverse urban challenges.

The hackathon will highlight the following smart city problem spaces:

  • Smart Parking: Developers take on the role of private parking operators with the goal of optimizing revenue by efficient and competitive management of parking spaces and pricing.

  • Waste Disposal Management: Developers assume the role of private waste management companies that want to efficiently identify, gather and transport solid waste to landfills, while preventing random dumping.

  • Water Access Management: Developers are NGOs working to improve water access by utilizing a fixed amount of funds to guarantee water access to as many households as possible.

Registration is open to anyone across the globe, whether a TiE member or not, and will provide participants the opportunity to collaborate with other teams at local and international levels, TiE says.

Smart city technology is a major business opportunity — revenue from these technologies will grow from $8.8 billion annually worldwide in 2014 to $27.5 billion in 2023, as cities around the world adopt smart city technology to meet sustainability goals, boost local economies and improve services, according to a report by Navigant Research.

Microsoft, GE and Bank of America are among the ten companies to recently throw their support behind a White House challenge to U.S. cities to become smarter by accelerating deployment of innovative technologies that tackle energy, water, waste and air challenges.

Organized by the nonprofit, Envision America, the effort will invite leaders from 10 winning communities to participate in a workshop in January in Charlotte, NC, where they will work with leading experts from industry and academia to diagnose needs, workshop solutions and develop new smart initiatives for their community.


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