2 October 2020

European case competition in innovation and pandemics

Case challenge

On 23-27 November 2020, 4EU+ University Alliance and the School of Global Health at University of Copenhagen will be holding a new case competition for bachelor, master's and PhD students. The goal is to equip the participants with real-world problem-solving skills.

Case challenge participants in 2019
​​Picture from last year's case challenge at the School of Global Health. Photographer: Mathias Wilhelmsen.

The Urban Health Case Challenge is a new initiative under the 4EU+ University Alliance. The competition has been organised to address the many urban changes associated with health and demographic transformation in our growing urban environments. Due to the worldwide COVID-19 crisis, this has become all the more relevant. This year's case will therefore focus on the resilience of society during a pandemic.

"The corona pandemic has turned out to have a particularly severe effect on already vulnerable population groups and has spread rapidly in cities where many people live in densely populated neighbourhoods and move around in the public space on a daily basis and especially in public transportation. This year's case challenge focuses on causes, side effects as well as solutions to the COVID-19 crisis across eight European cities and gives the participants ample opportunity to learn from each other's experiences and solutions across disciplines"
- says Flemming Konradsen, Head of the School of Global Health and flagship coordinator for UCPH's participation in 4EU+'s Flagship 1: Health and demographic change in an urban environment, which organises the case challenge in 2021.

Bachelor, master's and PhD students from 4EU+'s six partner universities throughout Europe can participate in the competition – including the University of Copenhagen. Each partner university has 10 places that shall be divided into two teams. Furthermore, Uppsala University and Norwegian University of Science and technology will participate with one team each.

Participants from the case challenge 2019
Students are working in teams to come up with the best solution to the case questions. Picture from the 2019 case challenge at the School of Global Health. Photographer: Mathias Wilhelmsen.

Behind the competition

The competition has been created to strengthen the university students' competencies and commitment to solving real-world problems through practical, theoretical, innovative and interdisciplinary learning.

It is an obvious opportunity for the participants to work with new people in mixed teams, build a new network and learn from the best within urban health across their own university and the other European partner universities.

In addition, the participants get the opportunity to engage in a highly topical case from the real world and work in an innovative and interdisciplinary manner. There is also an opportunity for pitch training and to practice project and time management. All extremely relevant competencies for the participants in their future working careers.

Practical information  

The competition itself will take place from 23 to 27 November 2020. This year, it will take place locally in each city as well as online joint sessions. It is mandatory to participate in the live sessions on 23 and 27 November, but in-between the participants will dispose of their own time.

On Monday, 23 November, this year's questions will be launched, and over the next five days, the teams will develop the best solution to a real-world problem. On the last day of the competition, Friday, 27 November, all teams must present their solution in front of a jury of experts at an online joint pitching session.

During the competition, the teams will be trained in developing and concretising their ideas so they can present them convincingly at the finals.