ODD Summer 2016

11 November 2016

ODD Summer 2016

This year the LEGO2NANO and OpenAFM projects joined forces with a new initiative - the ODD Summer. This exciting international challenge aims to task students to produce real-world solutions to some of the problems set by the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG), or Objectifs de Développement Durable (ODD) outlined by the United Nations in September 2015.  

The program brought together student makers and innovators from UCL, University of Geneva, and Tsinghua University Beijing to work in teams with the support of UN agencies, The Red Cross and the World Health Organisation, in addition to manufacturers and design workshops based in Shenzhen, China.

The teams were encouraged to use open-science approaches, app development and novel digital fabrication techniques to take both hardware and software projects from ideas to working prototypes.

Week 1: Geneva
Students worked with the UN, Red Cross and WHO to understand challenges around the SDG’s to develop and begin projects for the rest of the summer program.

Week 2: Beijing
Projects continued at the Laboratory for Lifelong Learning, an institute funded by the LEGO Foundation, and modeled on the Lifelong Kindergarten at MIT’s media lab, at Tsinghua University in Beijing.

Week 3: Shenzhen
At Shenzhen Open Innovation Lab (SZOIL), students used the manufacturing and rapid prototyping ecosystem of Shenzhen to produce working prototypes and lay the ground for potential future roll-out of each project in for real-world use.

Open AFM was significantly developed alongside some other great projects, and at the end of the ODD Summer, an open day was held in Shenzhen. Teams presented their work to members of the public, media and industry.

Students produced a prototype open source Atomic Force Microscope for Chinese school children to use to image pollution at the nanoscale. This project used the PCB prototyping services and 3D printing facilities in Shenzhen to rapidly develop their ideas into prototype form. MSc students who visited the open day were interested in joining the development of this project. The ground-work for this collaboration is now being put in place.

Arsenic biosensor
Science and engineering students from UCL, along with art and design students from Tsinghua worked with the Red Cross to develop a low-cost arsenic detector. A crowd-funding campaign is under way to continue the project.

Blind navigation belt
The development of a navigation belt for blind people was led by a post-doctoral researcher at UNIGE with the support of the WHO. The project team successfully met members of blind organisations in China and recently received an offer of investment.

Wet market app
This team worked with researchers from UNIGE ,WHO and FAO to  develop a working app allowing users to tag and log potential health hazards at wet markets. Now available for download

SDG hunter app game
Students working with UNIGE developed an app concept to help educate children about the Sustainable Development Goals.  This app is soon to be launched by the UN as part of a publicity campaign they are running at Geneva airport

The project aims to continue next year…

Key partners: UCL (Institute of Making, London Centre for Nanotechnology), University of Geneva (Citizen Cyberscience Centre, Prof. Francois Grey), and Tsinghua University (Laboratory for Lifelong Learning, Prof. Xu Yingqing)

Funded by: UCL Doctoral School, UCL MAPS, UCL Engineering, University of Geneva