By Editor Morten Reitoft

The printing industry is one of the world's largest industries, with hundreds of thousands of employees just in Europe. The industry, regardless of the COVID-19 situation, faces problems that need new approaches. VIGC has set the agenda for years to deliver invaluable events like the BOP (Benelux Online Print Event), and countless activities, mainly in the Benelux area.

October 12th-13th, VIGC again sets the agenda introducing the VIGC Hackaton. The term 'Hackathon" comes from combining the word 'hacking' with 'marathon' and is mostly known from computer events. Hackathon has, however, become a tool used to initiate innovation.

The basic idea is that a team of people can develop solutions to a specified problem within a specified short time. The VIGC Hackathon takes place from Monday, October 12th, 9:00 CEST to Tuesday, October 13th, 18:00 CEST, and the topics the attendees will work with is "How to re-invent the Commercial Print Segment," "How to create new added value for brand owners?" "How to create a hybrid (digital & physical) added value for future publishing?" and finally, "How can leaving the beaten track to create added value for the graphic arts industry?"

Interesting subjects, and interesting to see if the attendees can come up with valuable suggestions in such a short time. Interestingly, the project itself, since it, for once, asks the right questions about some of the more fundamental challenges in the printing industry.

Hackathons from other similar events have often created the foundation for several startup companies. Who knows, maybe this will be an opportunity for the global printing industry created in a new format - at least for us.

The process in a hackathon mostly follows a relatively strict pattern starting with the ideation moving on to Collaboration, Design, Prototyping (or describing the basic idea of a solution), Test, Iterate, and then present the pitch.

The VIGC Hackathon will be presented to a jury consisting of Alain Vermeire, Editor-in-Chief at Roularta Media Group · Magnus Thorkildsen, Partner at Grafkom · Robbert Delfos, Editor-in-Chief at ManagementMedia · Sabine Gelderman, Director Drupa & Global Head PrintTechnologies, and finally, I have been invited to be part of the jury as well.
Read more about the event, the prices, the mentors, and how to signup as a participant here.