FIRE-RES consortium recently announced its Open Innovation Challenge (OIC) list of selected innovations. These innovations will receive tailored in-kind acceleration support and mentorship to develop into fully implemented products and processes that help address the risks posed by wildfires in Europe and beyond.
50 solutions —from early idea innovations to in-market solutions, from data-driven technology and advanced firefighting equipment to educational methodologies and community engagement processes, from different parts of Europe, South America, and the U.S., and covering risks before, during and after wildfire events— have been selected to participate in the FIRE-RES Innovation Acceleration Programme. In addition to access to training materials and events as well as contacts and brokerage opportunities, the selected solutions will be invited to enter a competitive application process for financial support for demonstration or piloting activities and the opportunity to test their solution in the realistic environments of one of the project’s Living Labs.
The jury consisted of representatives from the consortium (ForestWISE, INESC TEC, CTFC, and EFI). Practitioners from some FIRE-RES Living Labs acted as advisors to the jury.
A wide variety of solutions go forward to receive acceleration support
As expected, a large proportion of the solutions centre around technology to gather data, process it into information, facilitate access to knowledge, and enable learning over time. Another common type of solution is composed of those that focus on firefighting equipment intending to improve materials, effectiveness, and safety, leveraging new engineering possibilities, and increasing compatibility and connectivity across geographical contexts. Innovative formats and ideas for training frontline operators form another group among the selected innovations. Finally, a good number of the selected innovations target communities in fire-prone locations and beyond. These aim for improved preparation, response, and recovery in the future. It is, therefore, not surprising that some of them focus on engaging young people in particular.
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