2017 Big Idea Challenge – Next City

Vanguard, Next City

2017 Big Idea Challenge

Friday, June 2, 2017

7:00pm - 9:00pm

The 2017 Next City Vanguard Conference will bring 45 young urban leaders to Montreal from May 31 to June 3 – leaders who are working to improve cities across different sectors, including urban planning, community development, transportation and more. 

Co-creating access

The theme for this year’s conference, organized by Next City with lead sponsor Concordia University, is co-creating access – whether it is making use of places, services or opportunities to achieve food and housing security as well as economic, social and cultural development.

In the spirit of the conference theme, community partners have been invited to participate alongside the Next City Vanguards for the first two days of the conference.

Together, these Montrealers and the Vanguards will learn about how the city is tackling challenges related to accessibility, including how we build our city, the planning processes and transportation systems. They will emerge from these two days with new insights into how to build more equitable, open and inclusive cities through participatory design.

The Big Idea Challenge

The conference will close with the Big Idea Challenge on Friday, June 2, hosted by Andy Nulman, co-founder of Just for Laughs and CEO of Play the Future.

The Big Idea Challenge is a competition that will provide an opportunity for the Vanguards to leave a lasting impact on Montreal as conference’s host city.

Challenge teams will be made up of Vanguards and representatives of local community organizations who will work over the course of the conference to co-design a solution for a problem faced by the team’s community partner.

Vanguards will do a deep dive into their partner’s world, gaining a more complete sense of the challenges that are being addressed. Teams will marshal their own expertise, their newly acquired skills and local knowledge to work together to articulate a specific problem to tackle and co-design solutions.

On Friday, June 2, beginning at 7 p.m., the Vanguards present their ‘pitches’ to Montreal community members — including city and community representatives — at an event open to the public.

A judging panel will select the winning idea. Presentations will be evaluated on creativity, feasibility, community impact and overall delivery.

In the months following Vanguard, the Community Partners will be supported advancing the plan of the winning proposal, supported by a $7,000 grant.

The event is free for the public. Please register here to attend.


DB Clarke Theater
1455 Boulevard de Maisonneuve Ouest
Montreal, Canada
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