The ‘EUROPEAN IMPACT HERO’ is an acceleration programme focused on international impact-driven ventures to support their business with relevant expertise and industry connections.  

The programme this year is focusing on ventures which are working in the fields of climate neutrality, circular economy and supply chain – and are committed to driving a more sustainable future.  

 

The ‘EUROPEAN IMPACT HERO’ programme consists of three individual components 

Phase 1: EUROPEAN IMPACT HERO DAY // 25 May 2021 

  • Up to 30 ventures 
  • During the ‘Impact Hero Day’, up to 30 social and impact-driven ventures work on finding an innovative solution to a specific challenge, together with a team of industry, expert, and student volunteers.  

Phase 2: EUROPEAN IMPACT HERO LAB // June – November 2021 

  • 10 selected ventures 
  • During the acceleration phase, ten selected ventures take part in our six-month online–acceleration programme, where they will be guided by an individual team mentor who will support their growth journey.  

Phase 3: EUROPEAN IMPACT HERO AWARD // 11 November 2021 

  • 10 selected ventures 
  • 10 selected ventures will have the chance to showcase their progress and pitch their business to investors, giving them the unique opportunity to win the 5.000 € “European Impact Hero Award’. 

 

ABOUT THE EUROPEAN IMPACT HERO DAY 

The ‘European Impact Hero Day’ is a one-day online- accelerator boost for thirty international ventures dedicated to climate neutrality, circular economy and supply chain – thereby making a sustainable contribution to responsible business practices and operations. The ventures apply with one personal business, technical or validation challenge that they are currently facing.  

During the ‘European Impact Day’, these challenges are addressed by interdisciplinary teams – composed of industry expert volunteers, student volunteers, one team coach and at least two venture representatives. Each solution will be presented to a jury. Out of thirty teams, the jury will select ten winning teams who will be granted a seat in the following six-month acceleration programme. The team that can demonstrate the biggest improvement from that day will win 5.000 €.  

The ‘European Impact Day’ takes place on Tuesday 25 May 2021, from 9 am – 7pm (CET). It is completely remote in a digital workspace.  

  

Timeline for the European Impact Hero Day 

1) APPLY AS A VENTURE: 16 APRIL 2021 

Apply with your venture until 16 April.  

APPLY AS A VOLUNTEER: 1 MAY 2021 

Apply as a skilled expert volunteer or student volunteer until 1 May.  

 2)  SELECTION // 2 MAY 2021 

The ventures taking part in the European Impact Day are selected.   

3)  ASSEMBLE // 14 MAY 2021 

Teams composed of venture representatives, student volunteers, industry and external experts are put together.  

4) GET TOGETHER // 15 – 25 MAY 2021 

Meet your coaches and mentors and get to know each other. 

5) WORK // 25 MAY 2021 

The venture’s challenges are addressed in a mixed team setting during the  European Impact Day.  

 

WHO IS INVOLVED DURING THE IMPACT HERO DAY 

During the whole programme, corporate volunteers from the areas of  

Software Engineering & Mobile Development, UX / UI, Marketing & Sales, Business Modeling, Procurement, Sustainability and Business Development are working on the challenges of the ventures.  

A committee of representatives of the organizers selects the ventures and challenges amongst the applicants in advance. In addition, the teams are supported by international students and external experts, who are optionally deployed according to their experience and subject matter expertise. 

The composition of the teams is as follows: 

2 venture representatives, 

1 team coach, 

2-5 Corporate and External Volunteers and 

1 student 

 

About the European Impact Hero Lab 

Ten finalists selected from the ‚European Impact Day’ will receive a spot in the ‘Impact Hero Lab’ to accelerate their business. The Lab is a six-months acceleration programme where participants gain real industry insights, work on selected topics during six specific lab days and are guided by a mentor assigned specifically to their team. This strengthens their expertise in specific areas and keeps them in constant contact with international ventures and experts.  

Reframing & Need Analysis // 11 June 2021 

Business Model Evaluation // 15 July 2021 

Communication & Storytelling // 16 September 2021 

Impact Evaluation // 30 September 2021 

Scaling // 21 October 2021 

Final Event // 11 November 2021 

 

WHY WE ARE DOING THIS 

  Reflecting on jointly addressing challenges means practice-oriented knowledge transfer for ventures and corporations. Both sides profit from the mutual exchange: ventures are offered professional support to maximize their long-term impact, whereas corporations can offer their employees an exciting opportunity as part of corporate volunteering.  

Employee can leverage their skills in a new environment and with colleagues  peers from other companies, apply new, agile working methods and connect in an international social start-up atmosphere.  

This format both contributes to employee development and to the interdisciplinary transfer of knowledge. The programme also offers the participants the opportunity to strengthen their own CSR activities in an agile environment and to apply them directly to the outside world. Working together and exchanging information about new technologies and business insights gives participants the opportunity to broaden their perspective.   

The level of experience and knowledge both within and between companies will be increased, long-term partnerships will be established, and innovation potential will be significantly amplified. In addition, students can put theoretical knowledge into practice and get access to potential employers in an unconventional way.  

  

PARTNERS 

  • SAP 
  • VOLKSWAGEN 
  • MICROSOFT 
  • SOCIAL ENTREPRENEURSHIP BW 
  • CENTER FOR OPEN SOCIAL INNOVATION 

 

  

 

 

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