Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC) has announced the four finalist teams of the Ericsson Innovation Awards, which will take place in Stockholm, Sweden, on April 15.
The competition focuses on students and gives them the opportunity to be fundamental drivers of change. Each team was required to submit an innovative idea to unlock the potential of education and learning through technology. To make their case, a business plan and a description of why their idea should be chosen had to be submitted by each team.
The four teams that reached the final are Blendlee (Germany), 123 CONNECT (India), Bridge (Ukraine) and Pikdo (USA).
The German team of Blendlee has created a platform for self-development based on the concept of blended learning. The main goal of the project is to combine the possibilities of technology and human factors to meet unique user needs.
123 CONNECT from India won the open vote. Its project, through a single platform, aims to spread reliable and real time information about career options available in different disciplines.
Ukrainian entrant Bridge reached the final with a knowledge exchange program which would be mutually beneficial for the young and the elderly. The idea would enable young people to obtain first-hand experience from international specialists in their sphere. The older generation would get to travel, communicate, learn something new and remain actively involved in society.
The US team Pikdo made it to the final with a cloud-based learning platform. The platform uses digital interactive and visual-based learning methods to gather qualitative and quantitative data about student performance and subject matter understanding.
The four teams will travel to Stockholm for the final where the winner of the EUR 25,000 first prize will be decided.
About the Ericsson Innovation Awards
Started in 2009, the competition began as the Ericsson Application Awards, a research and development initiative to spark app development and boost innovation.
In 2015, the competition changed its name to the Ericsson Innovation Awards, and the scope was broadened to target university talent globally. It has moved from being a competition based on app development to one focusing on innovation.
With education playing a key part in the move toward Ericsson’s vision of the Networked Society – where everything that can be connected will be connected – the 2015 theme is The Future of Learning.
The competition has been open to students from any academic institution, and in 2015, 270 teams from 43 countries entered.
Each team was required to provide a product description document, a business case and a description of why their idea should be chosen, along with contact information.
Ten semifinalists were then chosen by a mix of an Ericsson jury and an open voting process. The Ericsson jury then whittled down this group to the four teams that are in the finals.
A specially-composed finalist jury will then decide who gets first, second and third place.
The prizes are EUR 25,000 for first place, EUR 10,000 for second place and EUR 5,000 for third. All 10 semifinalists will be invited to an interview with Ericsson, with the possibility of landing either a job or an internship after their studies.
The evaluation criteria for 2015 are:
- CSR positive impact – Technology For Good
- global versus local (multimarket potential)
- value argumentation – potential revenue or cost reduction
- can the idea be easily developed?
- user benefit – can the idea be easily deployed?
- innovative solution.
Notes to editors
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Founded in 1876, Ericsson has its headquarters in Stockholm, Sweden. Net sales in 2013 were SEK 227.4 billion (USD 34.9 billion). Ericsson is listed on NASDAQ OMX stock exchange in Stockholm and the NASDAQ in New York.
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