About the Smart and Connected Innovation Challenge

All communities have problems they struggle to solve. Business and organizations also have challenges they can’t address through traditional solutions. With available data and the ability to collect data, many of these problems can be solved with innovative approaches to using data and connected technology.  These problems are rarely unique to one company, organization or community, so once solved, the solution has value beyond its intended application.

To demonstrate the value of solving business and community problems using data and connected technology, Economic Development Greater Saint John will be supporting up to seven proof-of-concept projects. Priority will be given to projects that solve an industry or a community problem and are likely to produce export-oriented products and/or services.


Proof-of-Concept Projects

Selected Proof-of-Concept Projects will have access to the following resources:

  1. 75% funding for the cost of the project up to a maximum of $25,000 (applicant must provide 25% of the funding)
  2. Access to a secure Community Data Analytics platform and tools
  3. Support to fully define the business or community problem
  4. Support to identify and select service providers who can help develop a solution

Other benefits of participating in a Proof-of-Concept Project:

  1. Ability to validate new products/services/methodology that could be further developed and commercialized (sets up companies to access more resources for future phases of development)
  2. IP is 100% owned by the participants; not by Enterprise Saint John
  3. Contribution to Saint John’s Community Data Repository for future research and innovation opportunities – we’re building a playground for innovators!

Examples of business and community challenges that could be addressed using data and connected technology:

  1. Customer abandonment of online purchases
  2. Predicting behaviour
  3. Customer retention
  4. Automated scheduling
  5. Fleet management
  6. Asset management
  7. Purchase predictions
  8. Forecasting
  9. Predicting staffing requirements
  10. Matchmaking
  11. Customer engagement

Proof-of-Concept projects will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  1. Company, or organization has senior leadership buy-in and engagement and entrepreneur or innovator has the capacity to deliver on the project
  2. One or more of the partners in the project is in the Saint John region and a portion of the Intellectual Property stays in Saint John
  3. Project addresses an interesting, and important industry/business/community problem, challenge or opportunity. (i.e. How scalable/exportable is the potential solution)?
  4. Project is straightforward, and the path to a solution or outcome is clearly attainable
  5. Company, organization, entrepreneur or innovator has relevant historical data or can capture relevant data to solve the problem
  6. Company, organization, entrepreneur or innovator is willing to share some datasets in the community data repository (may be public or private)
  7. Company, organization, entrepreneur or innovator is willing to share the results of the project with the community and be identified as a participant
  8. Project requires the structure and resources being provided by the Smart and Connected Community Data Project but also has a team and resources to support the project
  9. Project could lead to the development of a repeatable solution that could be commercialized
  10. Project must be feasible within scope of the available funds or be able to demonstrate additional sources of funding

Application Instructions – Please provide the following:

Company Information: Please provide the following information with your application:

  1. Name of company/organization/entrepreneur/innovator
  2. Industry (if applicable)
  3. Location of applicant
  4. Contact name
  5. Contact e-mail
  6. Contact phone number

Project Information

  1. Please describe the project and include the following in your description:
    a. What problem does it solve?
    b. What is the impact of solving this problem?
    c. What level of support is there for solving this problem by those impacted by the problem?
  2. Please provide examples of the data sets you could use to address this problem, or data sets you could capture by solving this problem. Describe these data sets as best you can.
  3. Please identify any data sets you don’t have that might be available from other sources that could help you in solving the problem?
  4. Please describe the resources you will bring to the project, and those you require from external partners. If you are not sure of the external resources required to develop a solution, please state this.
  5. Please describe your willingness to sign a data sharing agreement with Enterprise Saint John that would leave one or more of the data sets you plan to use or generate by solving your business problem in the community data repository to be used (based on your approval) for future innovation and research purposes?
  6. Please describe your willingness to share the results of the proof-of-concept project with the public to help encourage other companies to engage in similar projects and to drive innovation using data and connected technology.
  7. Please describe your intention to continue to build on the results of this proof-of-concept project, and your plans to further develop the solution should the results of the proof-of-concept project be favourable.
  8. Please include a draft budget and timeline for your project.

Application Deadline

Applications for the first round of proof-of-concept projects is now closed.

Successful applicants for the second round have been notified.

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