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Is the startup future female? At the Gen-Z Startup Weekend from November 4 to 6 in Hamburg, you could get this impression, because all 18 participants were girls between the ages of 18 and 21. In any case, it is sustainable, because sustainability played a major role in the five project ideas presented at the end.

© Melanie Köslin / Hamburg Invest: welcoming of the participants of Gen-Z Startup Weekend
© Melanie Köslin / Hamburg Invest: welcoming of the participants of Gen-Z Startup Weekend

The goal: to introduce young people to the startup world

The Young Talents Hamburg Club (YOTA), funded by the Ministry of Economics and Innovation, has set itself the task of giving children and young people an insight into primarily technical professions. New technologies are an essential part of the startup world, which is why, in addition to YOTA, which is part of Hamburg Invest, the Startup-Unit, which is also based there, was one of the organizers of the Gen-Z Startup Weekend. Next Entrepreneurs, of which Roger Zimmermann and Felix Hackbarth lead the program, played an important role as well. At the event, the participants got a comprehensive insight into modern ways of working and also learned a lot about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the United Nations. Overall, the motto was "Just do it", issued by Philipp Römer of the startup Umtriebig.

© Melanie Köslin / Hamburg Invest: group picture of the participants
© Melanie Köslin / Hamburg Invest: group picture of the participants

Ideas for sustainable consumption and medical information

The participants had formed five teams, which, with the active support of startup experts, were able to develop their ideas in less than 48 hours and present them on the final day. Our everyday consumption was the focus of most of the projects. Team FAPS presented a navigation system for the supermarket, InTime wants to reduce food waste with targeted shopping tips and information on minimum shelf-life dates. Team ikelihood developed a clothing swap concept that brings monthly variety into the closet without overconsumption.

All three solutions were based on an app; the cell phone needed for this could come from Modular. This model consists of various modules that can be exchanged in the event of damage or a technical innovation. This means that it is not necessary to regularly purchase a new device; waste avoidance is also the keyword here. All four ideas received very positive evaluations from a jury of experts, consisting of Carmen Ludwig (Körber-Stiftung), Tina Barkmann (Co-Learning Space for Hamburg’s Cluster), Pia Körber (Impact Hub), Felix Dreyer (Wayes) and Nils Wiezcorek (GRS-Batterien foundation). But the med AID team came off best. Here, an app ensures better communication between doctors and patients and makes medical terms generally understandable.

So the Gen-Z Startup Weekend ended with five successful pitches that give hope that the participants will keep their interest in the startup world beyond this special experience. The event itself will definitely have a sequel.


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