Social innovation championed in Madrid

​Ferrovial Services, with non-profit UnLtd Spain and the Camilo José Cela University, recently supported the Gamechangers & Cities program in Madrid, which assists startups that make positive innovative contributions to generate a social impact for sustainable cities. 

Gamechangers & Cities seeks to promote United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 11, ‘Sustainable Cities and Communities’, by supporting startups that offer solutions to transform cities into more inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable places that are better prepared for the challenges of the present and the future.  

The ten winning projects, picked from among 102 candidates, aim to address major challenges, such as recycling and reuse, accessibility and demographic issues. The projects were also given tools and training to measure their social and/or environmental impact, access to networking within the city ecosystem, and publicity. 

Over a period of six months, the entrepreneurs received 75 hours of mentoring from Ferrovial Services professionals. Specifically, ten mentors supported the development and growth of the projects, which can now be incorporated into the company's services portfolio as added value in bids and sales initiatives, or as partners in offering more comprehensive, distinctive proposals to clients. The transfer of knowledge and experience that characterises mentoring enabled the volunteers to enhance their professional potential.  

UnLTD is an organisation founded in the United Kingdom to transform society by supporting social entrepreneurs. It offers companies the opportunity to participate in programs that support entrepreneurial projects with a social impact which are in the growth phase.  

The ten winning startups: 

  1. Aiudo selects carers for elderly people who live alone, adapting to each person's requirements.  
  2. Blind Explorer is a digital solution to make natural environments accessible for the visually impaired. 
  3. De Piso en Piso is an online platform for renting rooms in shared apartments at below market price in exchange for setting aside a small amount of time to keep elderly people company, provide language conversation practice, etc. 
  4. Feltwood transforms organic agricultural waste into ecological industrial material with characteristics similar to those of plastic or wood, and with multiple applications. 
  5. Green Urban Data is an environmental intelligence tool aimed at offering optimised guidelines to reduce the effects of temperature imbalances in cities. 
  6. Nice to eat you is a digital platform linking up businesses in the hospitality industry with end users in order to avoid wastage of surplus food. 
  7. Mensos is a sustainable goods delivery business. It is the first logistics hub in the city of Madrid with sufficient critical mass to implement a working method. 
  8. Recircular is an active platform linking up enterprises to re-use waste as raw materials.  
  9. Recircup is a collaborative platform to encourage recycling, raise environmental awareness and foster the circular economy through IoT, apps and gamification. 
  10. Souji is a liquid compound for recycling used cooking oil by transforming it into environmentally-friendly soap/detergent for multiple household cleaning tasks.