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Old Dominion University Partners with NATO Innovation Hub to launch the First “Innovation Challenge”

Old Dominion University and the NATO Transformation Command Innovation Hub are partnering to hold the inaugural "Innovation Challenge," which will tap open innovation for solutions that may help NATO, and other responders, problem-solve during a natural or man-made disaster.

The "Innovation Challenge" is now open for anyone to submit abstracts, onsite and online. A simple proposal abstract, of 750 words, is due online by Sept. 18. Finalist pitches and awards will be presented Oct. 27 at ODU and online internationally.

In response to a crisis, NATO, and other responder organizations, may be asked to deploy an operation to restore stability in areas where basic services are disrupted and the population's basic needs are not met. The diversity of challenges a scenario like this presents will require a variety of actors to be involved in solution design.

"The NATO Innovation Challenge taps into open innovation and welcomes people from all backgrounds to participate," said Serge da Deppo, manager at Innovation Hub.

This competition is co-organized by Old Dominion University's Center for Enterprise Innovation (CEI), the NATO Allied Command Transformation Innovation Hub and the ODU Lion's Lair Innovation Competition.

"The collaboration among these organizations is what makes the challenge attractive to participants from industry, academia, government and the crowd," said Marty Kaszubowski, executive director of ODU's CEI.

Challenge winners will be awarded a solution development contract of up to $15,000 and the opportunity to present their entry in an upcoming NATO-wide event. In addition, there will be a cash award for solutions that apply directly to the Hampton Roads region.

NATO ACT Innovation Hub is a community of experts collaborating on designing innovative solutions to NATO issues. The experts come from NATO, academia, industry, think tanks, non-governmental organizations and the crowd. The Hub welcomes anyone willing to address NATO challenges. By bringing people with different backgrounds and perspectives together, the Innovation Hub generates a better understanding of issues and fosters innovation, resulting in better solutions.

The ODU Center for Enterprise Innovation (CEI) serves as a business-friendly economic engine for creating a sustainable, high-growth regional economy. It helps entrepreneurs and existing enterprises create new, high-growth, sustainable businesses; optimize current operations; and transform their companies for growth. ODU-CEI helps solve problems and grow the entrepreneurial ecosystem by consultation, hosting events where the community can meet and share ideas, and providing space for companies to start and grow.

The ODU Lion's Lair Innovation Competition is a joint program of the ODU Strome Entrepreneurial Center, the Entsminger Fellows and ODU Alumni Relations.

More Information and registration is available at the Innovation Hub website.

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