There are 110 volunteer projects in the Google Impact Challenge finals. The contest promotes ideas that will create an impact on society with the help of technology and innovation. Two such projects were initiated by students from the Technical University of Munich (TUM). Online voting for the best project runs until July 6.
Two projects from TUM students are up for the vote among the 10 lighthouse projects in the Google Impact finals, as well as 100 local projects. The winner will receive training as well as funding ranging from 20,000 to 500,000 euros. Support is provided for ideas that improve existing conditions via an app, website or in an entirely different format. Conceivable projects include a more efficiently organized sports association, sharing digital know-how, or assisting refugees with cultural and language opportunities.
Toranam Local Project - Technology without Borders for South India
TUM students, Sonja Müller and Franziska Weißörtel have launched a project for sustainable agriculture in India. "We have established a demonstration farm for ecological agroforestry in collaboration with an Indian non-government organization (NGO), where we show small-scale farmers in the province of Andhra Pradesh how they can reap favorable crop yields using this cultivation model even in the face of drought and earn more by processing the crops into soaps, shampoos or creams," explains Sonja Müller, who has nearly completed her Master's degree in environmental planning and engineering ecology at the Weihenstephan Science Center.
The Toranam Economic and Educational Center in southern India supports small-scale farmers whose livelihoods are endangered by climatic and socioeconomic changes. Within two years, the center will ultimately become financially self-sufficient by means of processing and marketing organically produced goods. "Funding would enable us to further expand the infrastructure in the second year of our initiative until the project becomes self-sustaining after the second year," according to student Monja Müller.
Integreat Lighthouse Project - Assistance for communities performing asylum and integration work
Printed brochures can soon become outdated. Why is information for refugees not simply digitized? Daniel Kehne, currently a student in the elite Finance and Information Management degree program at TUM and the University of Augsburg, is involved in the "Door to Door" association, which has published this type of brochure for Augsburg. He found a sponsor for his idea in Professor Helmut Krcmar, Chair of Business Informatics at the TU Munich.
Within eight months, students and faculty at the TUM collaborated with "Tür an Tür" and the social services department of the city of Augsburg to develop the Integreat app. Financial backing was provided by the Federal Ministry for Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth. Along with the free web software, WordPress, programmers have developed an app which is available in five languages: German, English, French, Arabic and Farsi. As an open source program, the software is to be available in every city and community in which only a few adaptations to local data are required.
Since the majority of refugees have android smartphones, the app is programmed for this system, yet for most, their device does not include an Internet data plan. Nevertheless, the app can be accessed offline once it has been downloaded, for example, at a WLAN Hotspot.
• Vote online until July 6: impactchallenge.withgoogle.com/deutschland2018
For any further suggestions on additional projects involving TUM students or scientists, please contact presse(at)tum.de.