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Better Together Award 2019

How might we encourage innovative cooperations between public sector institutions and starts ups and/or civil society organization to support local and global climate action?

Partners#Berlin #BMW #ecosystem #ImpactSafari #Innovation #Leadership #Impact #Purpose #SDG17 #SDG8 #SDG9




The project aim is to highlight the relevance and value for innovative cooperations between public sector institutions and start ups and/or civil society initiatives for local & global climate protection and climate change mitigation & adaptation. The Award and its featured ventures will be part of the ICCA 2019 conference for Vertical Integration for Climate Action in Heidelberg, May 2019.


In collaboration with GIZ and BMU, Impact Hub Berlin focuses on four main action points:

  1. Raise awareness for innovation cooperation on a global level by writing a state-of-the-art trend report and facilitating a global call-for-application to find the five best-practices in public / start-up cooperation in the field of climate action
  2. Support the winning teams to generate impact at scale
  3. Honor and present the five best-practices at the ICCA 2019 conference
  4. Initiate and replicate innovative solution of public / start-up cooperations



>> As part of the program we also did a corresponding research on “Collaborative Innovation for Urban Climate Futures – Trends for the 21st Century” – you can read about all our findings in the Trendreport. <<

Visit the website to the Awards here!

>> Want to know more or host your own program with us?  Get in touch!

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Fishbowl Discussion: Fostering the growth of impact entrepreneurs

How can cities and politics support Entrepreneurs? How can we build, support and connect local ecosystems that allow startups to scale?


#current #EcosystemBuilding #Impact #InnovationCommunities #SDG11 #SDG17 #SDG9 #SupportInfrastructure Partners

Netherlands, Germany




Accelerate MENA was a bilingual program (English – French) developed to inspire, build and connect social innovation ecosystems in the MENA region. Kicking off the program in Jordan and Tunisia, the project consisted of:


We believe that the best approach to address today’s challenges is to build and support local and global ecosystems of motivated people who want drive change. Innovation is not always Silicon Valley – Anyone can come up with new ideas that solve problems we face. Topped with inspiration, guidance, the right tools and skill set, these ideas can quickly turn into real projects with real impact.

Accelerate MENA equipped our participants with the tools to develop responsible and inclusive business models around challenges that matter – be it Sustainable Consumption and Production (SDG 12) in Jordan or Renewable Energy (SDG 7) in Tunisia – and connected them to the right stakeholders. By running two-day Design Thinking innovation bootcamps in Amman and Tunis as well as an acceleration training in Berlin, Accelerate MENA aimed to strengthen the MENA social entrepreneurship scene through three core elements:

The participants developed several ideas ranging from using biomass to empower small towns in Tunisia by producing and selling their own energy, to building a co-creation space for artists upcycling plastic, or designing energy-efficient housing in the dead sea regions.


>> Jordan

Design Thinking can unleash creativity in Jordan

There are a lot of highly motivated people in Jordan, especially young students, who are eager and motivated to get involved in starting an impact project. However, there are not enough creative offers that encourage ideation yet, and Design Thinking is still a new concept. Closely connected to that, Design Thinking experts and trainers are quite rare. During the workshop we were amazed to see how open the bootcamp participants were to the process and how much energy they put into the team and project work. The final pitches at the end of the workshop in front of a jury pushed the participants to develop their idea further – they were on fire!

Creative Workshops are nice; but follow-ups make the difference

Apart from the high energy of the participants, we were overwhelmed to see that many existing projects had an implicit impact focus already, especially in Amman and the surrounding areas. While there are existing support opportunities for young entrepreneurs in Amman, such as the Zain campus where our bootcamp took place, enpact or Oasis 500, follow-up support opportunities for early stage ideas are still rare. Although the level of motivation was high, participants who came to our bootcamp with an idea often struggled to create a business model making their project or startup financially sustainable. There is a big demand for developing a skill set to push ideas further.

Need for more business modelling to make ideas come alive

Concluding, especially in the early project stages ranging from ideation to follow-up support for projects that have not turned into a business yet, support and funding is lacking. We had the feeling that many good ideas were not followed up upon, as incubation or mentoring opportunities to work on the business side were missing. Design Thinking and co-working are slowly arriving in Jordan, but were not common buzzwords yet.

>> Tunisia

Female power!

Similar to Jordan, we loved how many female participants came to our workshop. The teams were very gender-inclusive and collaboration was highly encouraged. Although gender inclusivity and rights is of course still a big topic in the region, within the small context of our workshop and probably also within the younger age group it felt very natural to have diverse teams.

Strengthening Tunisia’s early-stage entrepreneurship ecosystem

Feedback we received from several ends indicated that the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Tunisia is still very early-stage with few players, support institutions and co-working spaces in the field. Especially amongst the older generation, becoming a founder is not yet as accepted as working for bigger corporates. Consequently, funding and investment is still a big topic and so is bureaucracy.


>> Want to know more or host your own program with us?  Get in touch!

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Human-centered design of personal-finance-management app for financial inclusion

How might we empower Namibian citizens to access, understand and make use of their free annual credit report and thus achieve financial literacy?

#ecosystem #Entrepreneurship #FinancialInclusion #FinancialLiteracy #HCD #SDG17 #SDG8 PartnersCountries




  1. Stakeholder alignment to understand supply perspective
  2. Local qualitative user research to explore user scope
  3. Five-day Design Sprint with stakeholders to develop a product concept





>> Want to know more or host your own program with us?  Get in touch!

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GIZ Lab of Tomorrow – Human-centered research to access emerging markets

How can you create new business ventures in emerging markets and establish strong local partnerships?

#designthinking #Digitalization #Ideation #LabOfTomorrow #Piloting #Prototyping #Research #SDG1 #SDG10 #SDG11 #SDG12 #SDG13 #SDG14 #SDG15 #SDG16 #SDG17 #SDG2 #SDG3 #SDG4 #SDG5 #SDG6 #SDG7 #SDG8 #SDG9 Partners

Zambia, Kenya, Uganda



>> Want to know more or host your own program with us?  Get in touch! 

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BMW Impact Safari for Purpose – Driven Leadership

How can we inspire and empower top-level management to create a purpose-driven environment for their employees?

#Berlin #BMW #ecosystem #ImpactSafari #Innovation #Leadership #Impact #Purpose #SDG17 #SDG8 #SDG9 Partners




  1. We plug corporates into our local impact ecosystem to make them experience a new world
  2. 2-3 full day workshop with excursions across Berlin
  3. Tailored topics designed to inspire and leverage purpose-driven leadership

>> Want to know more or host your own program with us?  Get in touch!