Under the motto ‘Enabling digital competences – improving digitization powered by people’ the Ideasforum e.V. invited to a first meeting on 8.10.2021 in the Bürgersaal of the Academy Mont-Cenis.

After the welcome by Mayor Dr. Frank Dudda, Minister of State Michelle Müntefering – Minister of State in the Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany for Foreign and International Cultural Policy – addressed a few words via video message to those present.

This was followed by short keynote speeches by Ulrich Ahle, CEO Fiware Foundation, on “Digital platforms and how digitalization can support sustainability in cities” and held by Dr. Doreen Mölders – Director LWL Archaeological Museum Herne on “Digital education and art – the key for smart citizens?”.

Goals of the association

Afterwards, the board of Ideasforum e.V., Gianluca Dianese, Pierre Golz and Wiebke Schuchardt, introduced themselves, the concept as well as the goals of the association. To promote the digitalization of society and the economy, the association wants to support new forms of networking. The goal of the forum is to jointly shape digitization and urban development in a citizen-oriented manner.

The registered association is to play a central role in the realization of “smart cities” and in promoting voluntary commitment to the digitization of cities. True to the association’s motto “Powered by People,” the aim is to promote communication and collaboration with citizens and companies, to foster virtual test environments to support projects, and to enable the transfer of knowledge, also and especially between municipalities. The focus here is always on knowledge transfer using so-called open source technologies. The association’s goal is to promote innovations in digitization and other related fields of technology and make them accessible to the general public.

The aim is to shape the digitization of cities, society and the economy together with citizens in Ideasforum e.V. – for livable cities.

Project ideas in workshops

To this end, the first potential project ideas were presented to those present in three small workshops:

1. once upon e-time – digital education and art with Gianluca Dianese
2. smart energy – shaping the energy turnaround in the neighborhood with citizens with Dr. Markus Mirz – RWTH Aachen, Fraunhofer Institute Aachen
3. sustainability in cities and how digitalization can support this with Thomas Semmelmann, City of Herne.

At the very beginning, the members agreed to become visible with concrete projects. Therefore Ideasforum e.V. invited many stakeholders from the education sector to discuss digital education offers and to present a first project idea called “Once upon e-Time”.

Here, Dr. Mölders from the LWL Museum of Archaeology offered to make the museum available to interested young people as a real laboratory. The project aims to promote the learning of digital skills and media in a practical way by creating videos and knowledge platforms with pupils based on the current Stonehenge exhibition of the LWL Museum of Archaeology Herne, which will be disseminated internationally.

Following the event, the Forum still held its ordinary general meeting. The association decided to join the initiative Living-in.EU. This is a European approach to the promotion of sustainable cities and communities of the future, in which, true to the motto of the association, the citizens are at the center of project and urban development.