We’re sure people have lots of questions about Idea Transform and weekend events – hopefully you can find the answer to your query below, but if not don’t hesitate to get in touch via email or Twitter.
What is Idea Transform?
It is an initiative to help develop ideas that can have a meaningful impact on society – in sectors as diverse as education, healthcare, the environment, community and mobile. We’ll help by providing events, support and mentoring to those with bright ideas.
The third Idea Transform weekend event will be held between 15-17 March 2013 at the Cambridge Judge Business School.
Who should come along to the weekend?
The weekend is open to everyone – young and old, students and non-students alike. You don’t need to live in Cambridge or have any connection with the University or city. The sort of attendees we’re looking to attract are:
- People with bright ideas that can make a difference to society – no matter how early in the process
- People that have the skills to help them develop their ideas over the course of the weekend. So you could be a marketer, have business experience, be a developer, designer or coder
- People with energy and interest in changing the world, while having a fun time – there will be plenty of things you can do as part of teams to develop ideas
What sort of ideas are you looking for?
Ideas that can potentially make a difference to society and the world around us, no matter how small. It could be an idea that will change the world or simply something that makes people’s lives easier.
Most of these ideas will be based on or use technology in some way – whether that is relying on the web as a platform to deliver services or mobile technology to communicate.
What happens during the weekend?
In a nutshell, people pitch ideas on the Friday evening and then attendees vote on which ones they’d like to work on. Teams form, based on interests and skills and then work for 48 hours to develop their project. There’ll be mentors on hand to help guide along the way, plus great speakers to inspire you with their own stories. Then on the Sunday night the projects are pitched and judged with the winners getting access to further mentoring and support after the weekend. The draft programme is here.
I don’t have an idea – is it worth me coming along?
Absolutely, we want people with skills, energy and enthusiasm to form teams, together with those people with ideas in order to develop them.
Is it just for students?
Absolutely not – while the event is being held at a University of Cambridge building it really is open to all. So whether you’ve just left university, have left quite a while ago or never even went there you’ll be welcome with open arms. No-one’s going to be asking about degrees or where you studied!
Is it just for entrepreneurs?
Nope, we think anyone interested in helping develop meaningful projects will benefit. We’ll have great speakers, experienced mentors and the opportunity to learn new skills, whatever your background.
I’m too old to come along
You’re never too old! At previous similar events we’ve had people from 18 to 50+ come along and have a great time, working with others of all ages.
What’s the cost? Where can I book?
We’ve worked hard to keep the event affordable. Tickets cost £40 for students and £70 for everyone else – book here!
It sounds a bit scary – not sure it is for me
It may sound daunting but the event aims to be a lot of fun – people will learn lots, meet interesting people and have a laugh. Everyone is very open and friendly – most people that come along don’t know anyone either so just get out there and mingle!
How many people are you expecting?
For the first Idea Transform event in 2012 we had 100 people attending over the course of the weekend. We expect similar numbers in 2013
Where can I stay?
Cambridge has plenty of hotels and B&Bs, close to the venue in the centre of town. Take a look on the web or let us know when you book if you want help finding accommodation.
What sort of businesses will come out of Idea Transform?
That’s really up to the teams – the aim is to encourage people to turn their ideas into sustainable businesses. Whether you see your future as a charity, not for profit company or simply a business that does good while making money that’s absolutely fine.
Why are you organising it?
We’ve all seen great ideas that never get the chance to develop and believe it doesn’t have to be that way. So we’ve come up with a programme of events and mentoring to give great ideas every chance of turning into brilliant businesses.
Is it a moneymaking enterprise?
No, this is a not-for-profit event – ticket prices and sponsorship are designed to cover costs.
Why are you charging to come along?
Simply to cover the costs of holding the event. Attendees get three evening meals (Friday, Saturday, Sunday) and lunch on Sunday, plus plenty of tea and coffee to keep you going between times, as well as the chance to hear great speakers that people often pay hundreds of pounds to listen to.
What about confidentiality of my idea?
The ideas we expect at the weekend will be in their early stages, so not really formed enough to worry about protecting confidentiality. That will definitely something to be addressed later in the journey and we’ll provide the mentoring to help with that. If you have a business idea that you’ve already developed and want to protect we’d recommend just sharing part of the project at the weekend.
How will winners be picked?
The exact criteria will be available at the weekend but it will revolve around the potential of the project to meet a definite need and how the team has developed it over the event. There’s a lot you can do in 48 hours but don’t worry – judges won’t be looking for completed applications or finished prototypes!