From shorter bus queues to safer cities for women and girls, winners of the Big Ideas Competition announced

Jul 18, 2016

This year's competition brought forth a number of outstanding ideas from across the region. Following a one-month sprint, the competition received 278 proposals from across ASEAN member states and the Republic of Korea. Image by daarwasik, licensed under CC BY 2.0

Winners of the Big Ideas Competition are out and they include a diverse set of solutions all using Big Data for public service, from shorter queues for public transport to safer public spaces for women and girls.     
 
The Big Ideas Competition for Sustainable Cities and Urban Communities was launched in May through a partnership between ASEAN, UNDP Asia and the Pacific, UN Pulse Lab Jakarta and the Government of the Republic of Korea.
 
The purpose of the competition was to look for new ideas that enhance basic service delivery, sustainable transport and energy, resilience to natural disasters and climate change, and harmonious urban environments.
 
“Given the complexities of challenges that cities in Asia are faced with, we need to encourage as well as give recognition to citizens’ ideas and insights in developing the next generation of innovations,” said Nicholas Rosellini, UNDP’s Deputy Regional Director for Asia and the Pacific and Director of the Bangkok Regional Hub.
 
This year's competition brought forth a number of outstanding ideas from across the region. Following a one-month sprint, the competition received 278 proposals from across ASEAN member states and the Republic of Korea.
 
The proposals underwent a two-stage evaluation. The first stage evaluated the applications based on the relevance of the issue tackled by the proposal, the quality of the idea and whether the team had built a prototype to test the idea.
 
Proposals were received from almost every eligible country, with a couple of exceptions.
 
Fifteen proposals passed the first round evaluation and made presentations via webinar to the panel of judges as part of the second round evaluation. The quality of ideas and projects submitted was impressive. After a very intensive and considered evaluation process the panel chose the following winners:
 
Grand Prize: Queues for Queues

This smartphone broadcasting platform hopes to crowd-source nearly real-time information, especially photos, from popular places such as tourist places, bus, subway, train stations or security points at airports. It would be useful when unexpected long queues occur when there are events such as heavy rain, big games, or in extreme cases, terrorist attacks happening. In daily life, it would allow citizens and tourists to foresee the queues while planning, and therefore distribute the wait load autonomously. In the long term, citizen-generated-data on traffic can become a valuable data source for cities to analyze ways of human behavior and therefore to improve quality of citizen lives.
 
Excellence Prizes
 
TUNE Map
The mobility needs of the blind are often neglected, and when sidewalks are not safe enough or even inaccessible to start with, it makes daily life for the blind dangerous and difficult.
 
This mobile platform will provide the blind with the safest route based on citizen’s contributions and offer the best route with audio directions. The collected data from both citizen’s reports and the blind people’s usage will also be used to inform the local authorities for prioritizing road improvement.
 
Raspberry-Pi-based Mobile Tracking for Realtime Crowd Analytics
This project aims to provide up-to-date and affordable crowd analytics. The team has developed an open-source client and server framework that listens to the broadcast probes and performs simple analytics such as tracking overall active devices in the vicinity of the client, and tracking dwell times (the amount of time the device stays in the area). The data collection client is based on a Raspberry Pi with locally available consumer networking equipment and a 3D-printed case, while the data collected would be possible for mining to estimate the demographic composition of any given crowd, such as gender, age group, etc., and would in the long term serve various applications such as retail analytics; tracking human migratory patterns (rural-urban); vehicles/pedestrian traffic analysis; and overall urban planning.
 
S-City application for safe cities and communities for women and girls
This youth-led initiative plans to collect data from 10,000 targeted community members who will use their S-City application to feedback on safety in public places and assess the quality of public services in the cities, which impact on the safety of women and girls in public areas. The app provides user-friendly functions such as mapping, tracking, emergency call (for events such as sexual violence) etc. and provides a space where citizens can freely and safely express their opinions and provide feedback on safety for women and girls, and quality of public services. Data collected will also be analyzed for policy dialogues, media engagement to advocate for more gender responsive policies.


The Big Ideas Competition for Sustainable Cities and Urban Communities is a collaboration between the Ministry of Science, ICT and Future Planning of the Republic of Korea, the National Information Society Agency of the Republic of Korea, the Korea Association for ICT Promotion, the Korea Big Data Alliance, ASEAN, the United Nations Development Programme Asia and the Pacific, United Nations Volunteers, and Pulse Lab Jakarta.

 

Contact:
Ramya Gopalan
Knowledge and Innovation Specialist
Email: ramya.gopalan@undp.org