A MAKEathon to tackle our meat consumerism
Retail & Consumer Goods
Services
Insights & Concepts
Prototyping & Testing
Culture & Skill Development
Applied Methods

→ Best practice research
→ Unpacking frameworks
→ Creative brainstorming
→ Rapid prototyping
→ User testing
→ Business modelling

Digital tools

→ Zoom
→ Veertly
→ Miro
→ GoogleDocs
→ Slack

Duration

3-day hackathon

client
challenge
Swiss Food Research, an active Agro-Food innovation ecosystem supported by Innosuisse, builds bridges between research institutes and Swiss companies. With the overall goal to create radical ideas for the food industry they aimed to try out different formats and concepts. The MAKEathon was one of their first.
Process
Set the stage
Qualitative Research
Analysis
Ideation
Prototyping
User Testing

Set the stage

Given the experimental remote format, a careful preparation of the process was essential, especially concerning the various tools necessary to allow the teams to collaborate in a fully digital environment.

Qualitative Research

Due to the remote setting the empathy phase was set-up differently than we’d normally do in an offline hackathon. Instead of going out to interview users, we invited five industry experts and academia to speak on Friday afternoon for 10 to 15minutes. Each of them shared specific knowledge from their field and provided an overview of the current solutions available and inspiration for the teams.

Analysis

Based on the expert inputs and the knowledge brought in by the participants, the teams mapped out their challenge to get a systemic perspective on the issues at hand.Based on this understanding, each team developed a specific, actionable problem with the right scope to be addressed.

Ideation

During Saturday morning, the teams engaged in digital ideation on miro. In general, we choose to collaborate digitally on one miro board so both the facilitator and coaches had a full overview of the progress and idea generation of the different teams. The brainstorm sessions were stimulated by various creativity techniques and narrowed down using an impact-effort matrix to evaluate the ideas.

Prototyping & User Testing

Saturday afternoon provided time and space for the teams to prototype and test their solutions for a meatless future. Prior to the hackathon, the teams were asked to organise users that could contribute valuable feedback for that stage of the development process.

Pitching

Each team prepared a pitch for a group of judges. The pitch was approached differently by each team. From a representation of the meatless solution portrayed and acted out by LEGO to engaging presentations. Despite the distance, the participants made sure that their solution or idea was represented and communicated in an interactive manner.

“The amount of different tools used and people involved was impressive. In particular, when you think about the ambitious schedule of the MAKEathon. The different teams and coaches kept their motivation and energy high throughout the weekend, which ensured that the result was surprising and of high quality. Despite the remote format, I have never seen such a driven crowd.”

Michael Augsburger - Business Associate at Spark Works

100+

People involved

48 hrs

ambitious schedule

1

used platform

10

pitches & prototyped solutions

outcome

Throughout the three-day long remote hackathon ten teams were continuously driven to work towards a meatless future and all of them ended up with an innovative, interesting solution, which wouldn’t have been possible without the motivating support of the coaches. The winning teams earned a coaching package that supports them with moving their ideas forward.

Project Lead
Michael Augsburger
Business Associate
Michael has a background in Environmental Sciences. His research focuses on the use of human-centered innovation processes for policy design. Believing in the benefits of interdisciplinary work, he has experience in coaching student teams to develop and push forward their own innovation projects. At Spark Works, he supports our team in the execution of agile work sessions with our clients through workshop facilitation.
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