• Monica Moldovan

Climathon Zürich 2021: where ideas come alive


What Action did you take lately? What are your learnings?

We all read news about all the excellent ratings regarding Zürich: top city for the quality of life, a hot spot for Technology & Innovation, a Circular Economy HUB, great education opportunities at the top universities, attractive companies, and high salaries and I could continue like this for a while.


At this point, you might ask yourself: do Zürich needs a Climathon?


My answer is yes because Zürich is an ambitious city that doesn`t settle for all this and wants to continuously build and co-"create the greenest blue on this planet."

So like in every outstanding example of ecosystem partnerships, Impact Hub Zürich joined forces with the City of Zürich, Climate KIC, and Climathon to co-create a joint initiative and bring closer people and their ideas to the decision-makers.


3 challenges:

  • Challenge 1: Fostering sustainable consumption

  • Challenge 2: From animal to plant-based proteins

  • Challenge 3: Power to the (neighbor)hood!

My personal story with #sustainability starts with a few conscious decisions that have changed the way I live and contribute to the world.

That`s a personal, exciting journey with highs and lows, with frustrations, sometimes, but, also, with wins and celebrations.

Participating in this year`s Climathon came naturally because I believe in the power of local communities as a Force for Good.

In order to bring change, I believe we have to start by changing ourselves.


For me, Climathon is a Celebration of People (yes, exceptional ones!), Ideas, and Action in its purest form.

When we get together for #climateaction magical things can happen and this is an ongoing story.

In practice, Climathon Zürich means 24h experience with 80+ participants, a dedicated team, coaches and experts, City of Zurich representatives, 13 volunteers, and hands-on projects that are tackling local challenges step by step.


Why should you join?

  • If you like exploring new ideas, bringing your contribution, and simply learning, that`s the place for you

  • If you like to collaborate and work with passionate local innovators, changemakers, talented and inspiring people from diverse backgrounds

  • You can participate in workshops about Prototyping, Pitching, Earth Activism and learn from experts

  • Discover new tools for collaborative work like SAP Scenes, beautiful.ai for presentations

  • You will test, experiment, get feedback, work with tight deadlines and under pressure, learn to play with concepts, select and simplify ideas

  • You will get challenged, but you will feel, as well, supported by your team


What are my learnings?


There are so many learnings that cover choosing a team, building a team, brainstorming, and preparing a pitch, and respecting tight deadlines.

  • Market research: you can always see the difference between an idea that was researched or just an idea that repeats, somehow, the things that already exist.

  • Problem-solving: we are here to solve a concrete problem that the city has, so make it understandable, relatable, and clear

  • Storytelling: create an authentic story around your idea and keep it simple

  • Team-building: spontaneous teams are getting together to work on an idea, I learned to identify skills and strengths and make sure everyone`s input, so needed, is asked and appreciated

  • Online Toolbox: I love discovering exciting tools to make my work more efficient and faster; my learning is that I need to make sure I have an overview of these tools and that they are easy to use beforehand: time is precious in a 24H Climathon

  • Communities: I did meet and exchange with talented disrupters, changemakers, and innovators and started building relationships that I am sure will continue after the Climathon; important fact: we are not alone, we are COMMUNITIES.


THANK YOU NOTE: this wouldn`t have been possible without the precious investment of Impact Hub Zurich, the City of Zurich, partners, participants, coaches and experts, the Jury, volunteers, and everyone involved in this amazing initiative.



Until next year, keep building and collaborating!



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