Berlin’s future socialpreneurs

- Agile and Lean Principles

by Louise Brace

Two entrepreneurs and lean champions are coming together to launch an event that can only be described as a Socially-minded Hackathon. If you’re in Berlin on October 10-11th 2015 and want to learn more about lean startup for socially conscious businesses, meet change agents and innovation leaders, then you should be visiting the Social Startup weekend at the IMPACT HUB.

The Social Startup is the brainchild of Lean Business Mentor Andrea Darabos (Lean Advantage) and her social entrepreneur colleague Daniel Ludwig (Crowdrunning). The pair have been collaborating on events at the IMPACT HUB in London for a couple of years, and this year they decided to pull their ideas together to launch a learning experience that will bring together startups and entrepreneurs, or socialpreneurs, who want to put their ideas into action and discover the lean startup approach to business.

The event is timely, as the UN is meeting this week 25-27th September in New York to discuss the new Sustainable Development Goals till 2030. According to this article by UNDP, cities will play a tremendous role in achieving many of the goals and a better sustainable lifestyle around the world. The Social Startup initiative will be giving attendees a head start in the challenge to improve Berlin as a city with a better quality of life.

Andrea and Daniel have big ambitions for the Social Startup weekend: “We want to show participants that with help of lean change and entrepreneurship, they can change community life in the city; improving life through design-thinking.”

Andrea and Daniel are setting out to prove that with a diverse team, you can create and prototype a business, which solves a social problem. Call it a socially-minded hackathon. If it’s successful, the Social Startup weekend could transform businesses and entrepreneurs in Berlin, and indeed in any city around the world.

Finding solutions for tomorrow’s social problems is the objective of the weekend. Businesses who have a social impact and want to design sustainable solutions will benefit greatly from taking part. The workshops and training sessions will teach participants how to apply social startup and lean principles into an organization. And how to implement design thinking to build new products and services.

During the first day of the hackathon participants get to brainstorm around their ideas and projects. All submitted ideas and projects must be based around a social theme:

  • Unemployment: job integration schemes beyond social milieus and districts
  • Transportation: mobility and congestion problems in big cities
  • Disconnected communities: immigration policy leading to today’s integration problems
  • Access to Education: unbalanced education access among young an old people – life long education programs
Lean startup for socially conscious businesses

Ideas will be pitched and developed during the weekend, prototyped and tested with real customers. Teams will be pitching their prototypes and iterating their business idea several times before the close of the weekend and participants get to talk through their concept with like-minded socialpreneurs who care.

The event is open to everybody who has an organization or startup with a social conscious. Andrea and Daniel also welcome change agents, intrapreneurs and innovation team members to take part and share their experiences.

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