Brad helps the hackers in Bendigo
The Australian Government’s Smart Cities Plan aims to position our cities to succeed in the 21st Century by “supporting productive, accessible, livable cities that attract talent, encourage innovation and create jobs and growth.
”Bendigo, in it’s bid to become a pilot site for the strategy, hosted a three-day Hackathon (a kind of think tank where different teams come together to solve problems for end users) in April this year.
Supported by Victoria’s Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP), the event brought people, ideas and technology together to work with leading technology experts to find technology-based solutions to challenges related to energy and water consumption in Bendigo.
Five teams have two days to rapidly prototype innovative solutions, with final presentations on day three.
BehaviourWorks Australia’s own Senior Research Fellow Dr Bradley Jorgensen was there as a contributor with expertise in behavioural science. He is unusually qualified for this type of event; not only does he bring years of teaching experience at university level, Bradley is a researcher, lecturer, consultant and behavioural scientist who lives in Bendigo.
His research includes energy efficiency, water management, biosecurity and community wellbeing, and he’s been invited to present his research all over the world. While only there for day one of the hackathon, Bradley helped get the team off to a strong start.
“My team challenge was: ‘How might the people of Bendigo utilise a real-time water sensor network so that the community can collectively reduce total consumption and moderate peak load?’
“The team brought together a mix of skills including engineering, design, water management and planning, and behavioural science.”
Dr Jorgensen adds that with the millennium drought still fresh in their minds, and the reality of more droughts to come, the Bendigo community could appreciate the need to have the latest technology in place to assist them with managing their water use.
Other teams in the hackathon were working through other important challenges aimed at making a big contribution to the quality of life and opportunity in Bendigo.