Second Half of Civil Society Week Engages IT Wonks, Debaters and Volunteers

laine uudised-laine
19. Apr 2011


The weeklong Estonian Civil Society week concluded yesterday with the third annual TEDx Tallinn conference on the shape of the future.

After an exciting and educational first half filled with conferences, workshops and a mock demonstration, the second half of Civil Society Week brought together speed-programming IT wonks under the Garage48 label, debaters at the Estonian Open Debate Tournament and volunteers during the Volunteering conference held Saturday.

The Garage48 weekend at the Ülemiste Technopolis in Tallinn gave birth to 18 projects, with over 120 people working on the ideas over three days. The winning project, storymarks  maps interesting stories, facts, legends, trivia and other information to real-life places.

The best business idea award was given to TuneSheet, an android app for storing music sheets for choir singers, musicians and bands. The same platform could be used by publishing houses to sell the musical scores.

Finally, the best public service award was given to http://www.bribespot.com which will allow people to register bribes and see all registered bribes by area and by type of services involved (police, healthcare, technical standards etc). In a long run, you'll see the hot spots or corruption and most corrupt areas of government.

The Estonian Open Debate 2011 brought together teams from Estonia, Lithuania, the UK, Turkey and Nigeria, to name a few places. The topic for the final round was: "This House Would Forbid the Use of Neuro-limiting Technology for Profit Purposes".

The Volunteering Conference, titled “Look at the World”, had the ambitious goal of raising awareness about the value and usefulness of volunteer work, by discussing examples of volunteering from across the world. Top international volunteering organizations such as AIESEC and EVS discussed volunteering in Estonia, Europe, the Americas, Asia and Africa.

Finally, TEDx Tallinn concluded the weeklong festival, with a volley of short speeches on the shape of the future, born today. The top speaker, Nic Marks, who also gave a public lecture at Tallinn University today, is best known for helping develop the Global Happiness Index, an alternative to the GDP.