What's happening

5 Dec 2019

Second Ford Motor Company Fund Smart Mobility Challenge launched.

We are proud to host the 2019-2020 Ford Motor Company Fund Smart Mobility Challenge, inviting teams of students to propose new ideas for sustainable urban solutions for communities.

Following on from the success of the initial competition in 2018, the partnership between the School and Ford is again providing the opportunity for design students to produce ideas for an industry brief. The theme of the competiton brief is Sustainable Urban Solutions for Future Cities, which aims to help improve people’s lives by developing useful initiatives that overcome obstacles to daily mobility, help people and goods move easily, safely and securely, encourage active mobility, connect communities together, and provide more efficient energy opportunities. Dr Val Mitchell, Senior Lecturer and Stuart Cockbill (pictured) from the School of Design and Creative Arts will be supporting the students as they develop their proposals. 

The students will work in small teams, over a number of weeks to produce their proposals, which will be judged by a mixture of Ford, University and community representatives. Three teams in the competition will be listed as finalists, each being awarded £5,000 to support the initial stages of project implementation, with the overall winning team being provided with an additional £7,500 to follow through with their proposal.

Last year ten students teams created competition designs, and the winning project was a ‘smart service’ that helps to increase the mobility of the elderly population by providing an intelligent ‘care from a distance’ platform. The project's creators have now establised as a company, supported by the the University led "Start-up-lab" which is part of the Loughborough Enterprise Network, to implement their idea. 

Ford Fund manager Debbie Chennells said: “What’s so impressive about Loughborough is that they have set up a series of workshops and a support network for the students as they develop their proposals. Last year’s Loughborough winner has now spun off into its own enterprise” – it will be an established Ltd company soon which is fantastic news.”