The ‘EMPOWER Project’ is a movement which promotes professionals coming forward to use their skills to help those in need. The Ideathon workshop, the 15th event of the SDGs Ishikawa-Kanazawa Dialogue Series, was co-organized by the UNU IAS-OUIK and the Code for Kanazawa Institute in order to collectively think about methods to encourage such activities within Ishikawa prefecture. Code for Kanazawa is an organization focused on finding IT-based solutions for tackling environmental challenges. The workshop was a collaborative effort involving professionals of diverse fields and interests.
At the ‘Ideathon’ (a portmanteau of ‘idea’ and ‘marathon’), participants were tasked with setting their creativity free and brainstorming within a group on various key topics, with a particular emphasis on the importance of collaboration between specialists from different fields.
The EMPOWER project’s philosophy of building a society which facilitates mutual collaboration is also reflected in the SDGs philosophy. EMPOWER invented the ‘Magenta Star-Badge’, a badge that can be worn to signalize the willingness to help—or the need to be helped—without needing to approach people directly. However, as of now, the reach of the EMPOWER project is relatively small. As such, one of the goals of the workshop was to reflect on how to gain more visibility.