Wanted: UT Students to Compete in Global Innovation Tournament

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KNOXVILLE — The Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is encouraging students from all majors to form teams to compete in the Global Innovation Tournament.

The competition, started at Stanford University four years ago, is now an official activity of Global Entrepreneurship Week, Nov. 16-22. This unique competition will pit teams from around the globe against each other, working on a solution for a common world problem and conveying their results in a short video posted to YouTube.

To enter the Global Innovation Tournament local competition, student teams must register at http://www.webjam.com/innovationvalley.

The mystery problem will be revealed on Nov. 4 and teams will have eight days to formulate their solutions and create and post their videos to the official tournament Web site by Friday, Nov. 13.

“A competition like this allows students to become unconstrained in creating and developing ideas — to be very entrepreneurial in solving problems,” said Tom Graves, a lecturer in management and director of the Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation within the College of Business Administration. “One of the things we want to do with the center is to embed an entrepreneurial culture on campus.”

Graves said entrepreneurs come from all fields, not just business. “And it’s entrepreneurs who create jobs,” he said.

The challenge in last year’s Global Innovation Tournament was to take a random object (water bottle) and increase its value by adding something creative, imaginative and innovative to it. To watch one of the video entries from last year, see http://blog.makeyourmark.org.uk/2008/11/25/my-favourite-entry-for-stanfords-innovation-tournament/.

This year, all local entries will be judged by the Innovation Valley Tech Council, consisting of local business leaders and entrepreneurs, during their monthly luncheon at Tech 2020 in Oak Ridge on Nov. 18. The top three entries will then be submitted for the global contest and winners will be announced online on Thursday, Dec. 3.

Students who need equipment to make videos can turn to the UT Libraries. To check out equipment, go to http://www.lib.utk.edu/studio/resources/index.html. Watching a short certification video is required, and there is no fee unless equipment is returned late.

Digital video cameras are recommended. Using a tripod will eliminate camera shake and using a wireless microphone will ensure better sound quality.

To reserve a workstation for editing the video, go to http://www.lib.utk.edu/studio/rez/frm-station.html. Instructions for editing and video composition can be found at http://www.lib.utk.edu/studio/rez/index.html.

Global Entrepreneurship Week is a global initiative to promote entrepreneurship, innovation and creativity in local communities across the globe. Thousands of activities are being planned in more than 70 countries around the world. Global Entrepreneurship Week was founded by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and the Make Your Mark campaign. To view a complete list of participating countries and organizations or to learn more, visit http://www.unleashingideas.org.

For a complete list of all local and statewide Global Entrepreneurship Week events, visit http://www.tnecd.gov/gew.

C O N T A C T :

Cindy Raines, (865-974-4359, craines1@utk.edu)

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