Photo: Diane Cusack Photography
Cork City Council together with the Cork Smart Gateway initiative launched the €70,000 Small Business Research and Innovation (SBIR) Challenge with Enterprise Ireland today.
This seed fund challenge invites applicants to deliver innovative ways to prevent and mitigate against instances of graffiti across Cork City.
Through the challenge call, Cork City Council is seeking low-cost innovative solutions, which enhance the cleanliness of the public realm and specifically address the challenges associated with graffiti, while contributing towards Cork’s ambition as a smart city.
Solutions sought should decrease the incidence and reoccurrence of graffiti tagging in Cork City and reduce the time and cost associated with removing graffiti from all types of building surfaces.
The SBIR challenge is a joint initiative between Cork City Council and Enterprise Ireland and is open for applications from 12pm on April 4 until 12pm on June 1. Successful applicants will be selected by an open competition process run in two phases. The competition is open to any organisation, university and service providers.
Lord Mayor of Cork, Councillor Tony Fitzgerald said: “The impact of graffiti has negative effects, not only for homeowners and businesses in the affected areas, but also for tourists and visitors to the city. The cleanliness of the public realm is a key factor in how safe a tourist or a citizen feels exploring the city and also plays a role in determining their enjoyment of the city.”
Cork City Council Director of Services Environment & Recreation, David Joyce, said: “This SBIR call will complement the work of Litter Management & Street Cleaning divisions and help enhance the enjoyment and experience of all users of Cork’s public realm, including residents, tourists, businesses etc, when in Cork City.”
Executive Director, Global Business Development, Enterprise Ireland, Kevin Sherry said: “Enterprise Ireland is delighted to collaborate with Cork City Council as part of the SBIR Ireland initiative. While relatively new to Ireland, SBIR is a proven mechanism to develop partnerships between SMEs and public bodies to develop innovative solutions that address specific public needs and challenges. This particular challenge aims to harness the ingenuity of innovative companies in the prevention and mitigation of graffiti. Solutions arising from this challenge will ultimately result in positive benefits for societies, not just in Ireland, but around the globe.”
An information session in relation to this challenge will be held on Friday April 27 in the Council Chamber City Hall.