Message by Peter A. Bruck

Watch Out : Europe On Fire!

“Watch out : Europe on fire” is a warning, but even more a call to action! Action is taken by this year’s winners of the European Youth Award which is Europe’s leading contest for digital social entrepreneurs and young designers and developers of solutions with a positive social impact.

In 2019 EYA determined the best solutions from 59 countries of the European Union, the Council of Europe and the cooperating countries from the Mediterranean, created by young people.

The winning projects are what we need to watch out for and show where Europe is on fire, small or large. Young people stand up against the inaction of political elites not taking the scientific warning on climate change seriously and leading the world into catastrophe. Young people want action and they rightly want it now.

Do you know a digital solution, which fosters the rebuilding of forests and afforestation? Check out the EYA winning project “Forest and Climate” because it shows how it is done.

More young people demand changes to the democratic processes and public sentiments. They take the gamification approach to play a biographic game countering xenophobic rhetoric and false concepts about refugees.

Digitalization holds the promise to increase productivity and health. The winning project “LiGENCE” allows for quicker diagnosis and higher accuracy concerning 2D echocardiography measurements.

 “Watch out : Europe on fire” refers also to the issues faced by people with impairments, like the EYA winning tactile device “Eyelight” that substitutes sight by hearing and touch.

Physically paralyzed people need not be isolated any longer. The winning project “Eye Build It” offers an eye-tracking solution and an online platform so that impaired people can communicate with the outside world, autonomously.

Not long ago, a mobile app that discovers a person’s hidden potential would have been put off as fiction. Today it works and “Aivy” is a winning EYA solution.

EYA winning project “FreeHour”  allows face-to-face social interaction, crucial in a world of online strangers and increasing social alienation. It assists in organizing one’s work, studies and spare time activities according to one’s priorities.

Education facilities all over Europe struggle to find ways to introduce young girls to the world of code. Let me present you the EYA winning project “imagiLabs” which successfully approaches this issue.

European youths demonstrate an impressive variety and richness of solutions. The EYA Festival in Graz brings you all together for social networking, learning from the best and celebrating bright ideas and splendid implementations.

Thank YOU for your engagement and your interest in the EYA Festival!

The EYA network and community continue to grow and new events are created every year. With SHack – the social hackathon, we visited Novi Sad and Vienna, we held an Impact Weekend in Sarajevo and a Youth for Innovation programme in Prishtina. In the year 2020 events in Budapest, Vienna and many more are in the planning.

I thank the partners who make these events possible.

Thank you for watching out and for carrying the torch!

Peter A. Bruck
EYA Initiator| Honorary Chairman ICNM