To truly make a difference and improve life for everyone who lives, works and travels in Glasgow, the Future City hackathons need much more than programming and coding. They need ideas.

Ideas that have the potential to radically improve life in the city. Ideas born out of points of view that haven’t been considered before. Ideas like the ones that seemed crazy but we can’t live without now. Fully-fledged ideas. Rough sketches. The beginning of an idea. Ideas that aren’t even an idea yet.

Take a chance: pitch an idea

Here are a few suggestions to get you started:

  • Do your homework: research the themes and the challenges people face.
  • Keep it relevant to the hackathon theme.
  • Don’t expect to pitch a fully thought through idea.
  • Keep it simple.
  • Prepare your pitch.

Give it a shot; there is no downside. And it only lasts 60 seconds!

You’ve decided to pitch: what do you say?

Public speaking can be nerve-wracking and you only have a minute, so it is always good to prepare your pitch:

  • Introduce yourself.
  • Introduce your idea: what is the issue? Whose needs are you aiming to meet?
  • Illustrate it with a story; it is a good way to catch people’s attention.
  • Make your idea stand out by giving it a memorable name.
  • A call out to participants: who do you need on your team? What skills are you missing?

If you didn’t pitch an idea, use the networking time that follows to discuss with others their ideas. Which one(s) would be interesting to work on? Can you contribute and help shape the ideas?

Final presentations: pitch your project to the judges

At the end of the weekend, you will be pitching your solution to a panel of judges. Start thinking about your final presentation from the start and keep it in mind throughout the weekend.

It will help you stay on track and make your presentation and product stand out. Judges will want to see your solution worked through and know:

  • What have you created? What does it do?
  • Who is it for? Who is your audience? What needs do you fill? If it can evolve into a business, what is your market?

You will have 3 minutes to present and 2 minutes for questions. From 1pm on Sunday, teams will have an opportunity to do a private practice presentation in front of mentors to get feedback.

Having a great idea and product is one thing. Being able to clearly articulate its benefits and how it will improve life in the city is crucial to giving it a chance to do so.

Have you pitched an idea or a project before? Could you share your experience with our participants? Do you have any questions? Read on for more information about the pitching session.