Urbantech – 6 Core Areas Focus

The COVID-19 pandemic is not the end for cities; rather, it signals a shift in urban futures that are more robust and sustainable. Urban technology (Urbantech) creates long-term partnerships between SMEs, start-ups, corporations, regional and local governments, and other innovative stakeholders, with a shared goal of improving urban future. Urbantech is an innovative approach to today’s challenges, advancing a smart city’s vitality, efficiency, security, and sustainability. 

The ParticleX Urbantech Global Challenge connects entrepreneurs with corporates, incubators, and investors, to continually improve the future of city life. To enter, applicants must be innovators fostering the urbantech revolution in one of these Six areas – 1) Real Estate & Built Environment, 2) Infrastructure & Utility, 3) Transportation & Mobility, 4) Food Supply, Public Health & Safety, 5) Circular Economy, Cleaning & Waste Management, 6) Lifestyle, Culture & Education. 

1) Real Estate & Built Environment

Proptech marketplace, based around the property lifecycle or its service offering.  Proptech actually involves every stage of properties’ life cycles, from supplying, planning, building, selling, using, managing and demolishing and beyond. Under this framework, PropTech refers to any real estate company using technology to increase efficiency, visibility, experience, flexibility, productivity and value. 

Examples of technology solutions:

  • 3D Printing
  • Advanced Building Technology
  • AI & IoT Inspection
  • AI generated design optimisation
  • Automation, Robotics & Sensors
  • Building Automation & Intelligence
  • Building Materials
  • Carbon capture/removal
  • Carbon Emission
  • Climate resilience/adaptation
  • Construction Management & Logistics
  • Database Solutions / Data Analysis
  • Digital Listing / Marketplaces
  • Financing / Capital Markets
  • Leasing & Lease Management
  • Legal, DD, Closing
  • Low carbon material
  • Nature-based solutions
  • Property Management
  • Self-healing materials
  • Simulation & modelling
  • Smart and Green Building
  • Smart cities
  • Social value
  • Tenant / Customer Experience
  • Urban Planning and Landscaping
  • Other Proptech Solutions

2) Infrastructure, Energy & Utility

Infrastructure services such as power distribution, smart energy, and water delivery lay the groundwork for long-term economic growth.  The utilities industry is at the forefront, when it comes to implementing sustainable practices, such as committing to a net zero carbon objective. Clean air statutes mandate that industries minimize carbon emissions and satisfy sustainability standards. 

Solutions based on the following technologies will be prioritized.

  • Advanced Energy Storage Technology
  • Applications of Robotics: Optimizing Automation and Increasing Productivity
  • Building Information Modelling (BIM)
  • Electric Vehicle – V2G, Recycling of Second-Life Batteries, Fleet Electrification Analytics, and EV Load Forecasting
  • Energy Management
  • Energy Sharing
  • Green Energy Technology
  • Innovative methods of Power Generation, Monitoring, and Performance Enhancement for Renewable Energy Sources
  • New Forms of Energy Sources
  • Recycling of Solar Panels or Wind Blades, as well as Enhancement Technologies and Forecasts
  • Smart Metering for Big Data Analytics Solutions
  • Solar Energy and Batteries
  • Sustainable Energy Systems: Optimization and Efficiency
  • Other Emerging Technologies

3) Transportation & Mobility

Rapid, efficient, and safe movement is becoming increasingly crucial in today’s fast-paced society. Data is collected by smart cities via devices and sensors installed in their railways, electricity grids, highways and other assets. It disseminates data using a smart communications system, which is frequently a hybrid of wired and wireless links. The intelligent software creates relevant data and digitally updated services. Startups using modern technology and unique concepts provide personalised experiences and a high level of service to keep cities moving.

Some of the areas of interest for the program are around smarter, more efficient technology solutions for the MTR. However, any startup aiming to make an impact within the mobility and transportation industries are welcome.

  • AI Solutions
  • Asset Life Cycle Management Solutions (From Planning, Design, Construction to O&M)
  • Blockchain Technology and Supply Chain Integration
  • Database Solutions
  • Energy Efficiency and Storage Solutions 
  • EV Charging-related solutions
  • Machine Learning Solutions
  • Mobility as a Service (MaaS)
  • Predictive Maintenance of Facilities and Equipment
  • Railway Technology
  • Real Time Information Synthesis and Alert Solutions
  • Robotics, Automation & Sensors
  • Social Inclusion Solution
  • Supply Chain Integration
  • Sustainable Environmental Solutions
  • Internet of things (IoT)
  • Visual and Non-visual Safety Solutions
  • VR / AR

4) Food Supply, Public Health & Safety

The COVID-19 epidemic is altering the world by accelerating transition to a more sustainable, affordable, and accessible economy worldwide. Adoption of innovative, technology-driven solutions can help create a sustainable urban food ecosystem and overcome food system challenges, such as hunger, access to healthy food, food- related illnesses, food waste, and improving environmental health and public safety for the developing world’s constantly growing urban population.

  • Automation in supermarkets and restaurants
  • Circular food economy
  • Cultured animal products (lab grown meat)
  • eHealth & telemedicine
  • Health and Safety Technology
  • Healthcare management
  • Personalised nutrition
  • Recombinant proteins
  • Sustainable farming (Artificial Intelligence, Data and analytics solutions)
  • Sustainable or novel food products
  • Traceable Food (Blockchain, Circular business models solutions)
  • Vegetable proteins and synthetic meat
  • Workplace wellness
  • Other Healthtech and Foodtech Solutions

5) Circular Economy, Cleaning & Waste Management

Material recovery and recycling have been impacted by the COVID-19 epidemic and current market instability. Although the epidemic and its effects make it more difficult to recover materials, the circular economy’s core principle is still the effective collection and return of wasted resources for manufacture.

  • Air quality monitoring – e.g. Monitoring indoor and outdoor air quality to prevent leakage and accumulation of toxic gas.
  • Biodiversity
  • Circular Management
  • E-waste and batteries
  • Recycling AI / Robotics
  • Sustainable Materials and Packaging; Plastic Recycling
  • Technology Application on 6Rs (reuse, recycle, redesign, remanufacture, reduce, recover)
  • Waste Management – e.g, IoT technology to monitor the waste level.
  • Waste Water Management – e.g. Water Leakage Monitoring, preventing bacterial growth.

6) Lifestyle, Culture & Education

Cities will need to place a larger focus on enhancing quality of life, creating a stronger educational environment, and promoting sustainable growth through the arts and creative sectors to accommodate future population increases.

Cities should embrace innovation and technology to establish a strong economy and a great quality of life for their citizens. People will be happier, healthier, wiser, and more affluent as a result, while the city itself will be greener, cleaner, more liveable, sustainable, resilient, and competitive.

  • ArtTech
  • Blockchain Technology
  • Digital Transformation (Process / Business Model / Cultural)
  • Education
  • Elderly Rehabilitation Services.
  • Environmental Solutions
  • ESG, Industry 4.0
  • Good Health and Wellbeing
  • Impact Investing
  • Social Inclusion Solution
  • Social Technologies
  • Web 3, Metaverse, NFT
  • Other Emerging Technologies