George Kembel, Executive Director of the d.school gave the opening remarks and introduced the teams. We heard from seven multi-disciplinary teams from across campus, who had five minutes to present their idea to the panel of judges. First up was CombatIV, who is redesigning the IV bag for the US military of the 21st century. Next, we heard from RewiRE, a team working to provide cheap, clean electricity to rural communities in emerging markets. SocialTeeth gave a compelling presentation to showcase an online platform to support citizen media and encourage substantive discourse in mainstream media. CompactCath illuminated the widespread issues associated with self-catheterization and shared their redesign of catheter packaging to make it more discreet and hygienic. Read Imagine demonstrated their app designed to re-imagine the reading and storytelling experience for children. Illuminus shared a tool they are developing to connect citizen journalists to media outlets and bring unheard voices to mainstream audiences. Finally, Spark Truck shared their experiences with an educational build-mobile and their plans to take it cross-country to help kids build their creative confidence.
The panel of judges included: Kitty Boone, Vice President at the Aspen Institute; Steve Hilton, Senior Advisor to the UK Prime Minister and visiting scholar; David Kelley, Stanford Professor and Founder & Chairman of IDEO; Alexis Madrigal, Senior Editor at The Atlantic; and Mark Schar, Managing Director of One Page Solutions and Band of Angels.
All of the teams gave exceptional pitches, but at the end of the night only three were to move on to present in Aspen. While the panel of judges deliberated, dinner was served from a food truck parked just outside the d.school’s garage door.
The judges announced the winners and threw in a reality show-like twist. Four teams instead of three will be presenting at the Aspen Ideas Festival in June: CompactCath, Social Teeth, CombatIV, and Spark Truck.
Congratulations to the winning teams and to all the students who participated!
Here is a selection of photos taken by Chris Seewald at the event: