Call for Startups To Make City Life Better

Our goal is to find, fund and support high potential seed stage startups that have the potential to positively impact 100 cities within 5 years.

We’ve shared our high level interests in #cleantech #govtech #smartcities #mobility or #IOT.

Let’s get more specific. Here we go:

Elastic housing

A common default for providing more capacity is to simply build more. However, the problem is not just that new building construction is limited by space, policies, and time—there is also the issue of affordability. How can we provide more great housing options more quickly and more cheaply?

Editable roads

Most ideas for future mobility are based on road systems, but the way in which we inspect and maintain roads has changed very little. It is still expensive to make changes, such as adding bike lanes (not just paint markings but spaces separated from traffic). Are there better ways to build, maintain and make changes to roads?

Extreme water

Cities need to adjust to new water challenges. For many areas, local water sources are being exhausted. At the same time, climate effects, such as rising seas and weather that leads to more flooding, are creating new water challenges. What new solutions might help reduce the strain on water sources? How can cities more effectively cope with flooding?

Things move

People’s mobility is undergoing a Cambrian moment. But what about how we things move or how we move things? What new opportunities exist to move the things we depend on every day, such as food and waste or maybe even our homes and offices?

Infrastructure subscription

How can we smooth out the capital requirements for some of the most expensive pieces of infrastructure? Where are the opportunities to turn a large upfront cost into smaller ongoing payments?

Enforcement bots

From illegal parking to cooking oil disposal, laws that govern how more people live together depend on more efficient and effective enforcement for revenues and well being. What opportunities exist for robots to support those charged with law enforcement?

Urban health

Urban health risks range from disease outbreaks such as smallpox to respiratory issues linked to air pollution. What approaches might lead to better health outcomes for diseases associated with highly concentrated populations?

Affordable de-risking

As we invest more in cities, how can we reduce our insurance costs? From understanding risk to assessing claims, many new opportunities exist to use technology to reduce the cost of reducing risks.

CAP (Computer-aided planning)

Urban planners have a growing range of tools and data, but with these increases come a growing complexity in understanding how urban systems might behave. What tools can be created to better help planners understand and communicate possibilities to stakeholders?

Sneaky benefits

How can we sneak benefits into the products and services people want because they are more economical, more convenient, or just more fun? Where are opportunities to sneak in lower emissions benefits while offering something more?

Young or old

Many founders solve their own problems and the results are some of today’s most promising firms. However, for children and the elderly, cities pose unique challenges including accessibility and safety. We’ve love to see more solutions that cater to these two groups.

Slum life

Cities are home to some of the poorest people in the world. Favelas, townships, and slums present unique challenges, and we’d love to see more founders working to make life better for people with the lowest incomes.

Making sense

Local government data sets continue to open up as do private data sets. Mobile and connected devices expand our capacity to collect even more data. How can we make sense of this data to make city life faster, better, cheaper or just more fun. 

Responsive government

Local governments frequently struggle with older, poorly supported tools. And this exactly at the point where their citizens are getting better and better experiences. How can we get local government the tools that rival or exceed the best experience in the private sector?

Capital Improvement

Software will redefine cities, but hardware will remain a critical requirement from adapting existing built environment to building new environments. How will this be funded? How can we create new investment products to match cities shifting needs?

What did we miss?

This is just a start. We’ll keep adding to this list.

If you are working on one of these problems or if you’d like to fund or work with teams who are working on these problems, please join us.

If you are not working on one of these problems, we still want to hear from you. Some of our most promising investments are the result of founders who have discovered problems that aren’t well or widely understood.

One Response

  1. Alex Tourski at ·

    I would like to add to this great list one more important component: Like software brings in life to hardware, stories bring life to the city, filling it with memories, emotions and history. Good stories connect communities and help people to understand each other. Good stories entertain and educate visitors of the city.
    We at izi.TRAVEL do efforts to fill in cities with stories, accessible in free and open way via smartphones. It brings together museums, tourist offices, universities, local radios, streetartists and storytellers. With support of local transport and tourism businesses we let these people be heard by all those who live and explore the city. We see thousands of participants already.
    Shall we talk more about it?
    Alex Tourski
    Co-founder
    izi.TRAVEL
    ============
    email: alex.tourski@izi.travel

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.