SOFIA DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION was founded as non-profit organization with the decision 348
of the Sofia Municipal Council to work for the sustainable development of the capital.


Architectural Hackathon: ELEVATED HABITAT V1.0

Elevated Habitat V1.0
Architectural Hackathon
26.04.2017, Sofia Tech Park


Elevated Habitat V1.0 Hackathon will take place during Webit 2017 and is part of the initiatives celebrating the 10 year anniversary of Bulgaria’s membership in the European Union, organized by the European Commission Representation in Bulgaria and Sofia Municipality.

The task for the participants is to develop innovative solutions for the roof space of a public building in Sofia - The Municipal Cultural Institute Sredets House of Culture.

Within its investment program under the "Regions in Growth" 2014 - 2020 Operational Programme, Sofia Municipality plans to carry out reconstruction and modernization of the Municipal Cultural Institute, transforming it into the Center for Contemporary Performing Arts and Education, in relation to which the architectural design of the site will be updated. The ideas and innovative solutions created during Elevated Habitat V1.0, have the opportunity to be included in the revised investment project.

The main challenge in the architectural hakathon Elevated Habitat V1.0 is to create a concept for the roof space of MCI HC "Sredets". Innovative, smart and forward-looking ideas are welcome to transform the roof into an attractive place in this zone of the city.

Sofia Municipality aims to transform the building into a stage, which will meet some of the needs of independent companies and artists, it will meet the latest standards in the presentation of performing arts work and at the same time will maintain and improve its educational functions.

The Centre for Contemporary Performing Arts and Education will support independent artists in the preparation and presentation of innovative artistic projects and practices, it will encourage and support young and debuting artists in the realization of their first projects, it will work towards raising the popularity and visibility of the contemporary performing arts in Sofia and towards the development of contemporary performing arts audiences by conducting educational programmes in arts for amateurs and professionals. It is essential that the participants’ concepts emphasize the link between the building and “Zaimov’’ park which will be reconstructed in the coming years.

The theme of the event is announced in advance, allowing participants to prepare their ideas. The hakathon participants will have the architectural project of the building in dwg format, which will be available after registration. They will have one day to finalize their concepts and to present them to the jury.

The aim of the hackton is to use shaping algorithmic methods of shaping. Previous experience with this type of software is an advantage.


Elevated Habitat v1.0 / 09:00 - 17:00
Entry presentations / 17:30 - 19:00
Announcing the Winner / 19:00 - 19:30

The participants in the hackathon will be provided with food, drinks and high-speed Internet connection.

The requirements for participation in the hackathon are:

1) innovative ideas; 2) personal laptop; and 3) preregistration

Following the preregistration process, the paricipant will receive additional information and access pass to enter Sofia Tech Park.

The work of the participants will be supported by a mentors team, provided by DESIGNMORPHINE.



For a third consecutive year, Goethe-Institut Bulgaria, Sofia Development Association, Sofia Municipality and Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski” will cooperate in the organization of the programme for postgraduate studies “Cultural Management Academy”. The programme offers opportunities for people working in the field of culture to raise their competences, to learn from leading Bulgarian and foreign specialists, to create new professional contacts and to become part of the growing professional network of the Academy, which includes cultural managers, representatives of foreign cultural institutes, municipal and national institutions, non-governmental organizations, etc.

This year the Academy grew with branches in Bucharest and Thessaloniki. In each of the three cities, a one-week course will be held with a group of up to 20 local participants.

Within the framework of the Academy, an international conference will be held in Sofia in September, which will be an occasion for the participants from the three cities to meet, exchange experience and discuss possible joint projects. Another result of the Academy will be a publication with articles and academic texts on cultural management and cultural policies. As part of the Academy, Goethe-Institut offers initial funding for joint projects among the programme participants in Sofia, Bucharest and Thessaloniki.

Deadline for application: 8 May 2017

Requirements to the participants: professional experience, completed higher education (min. bachelor's degree), fluency in English, motivation

Documents: motivation letter and CV

Send to:This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it."> This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

You can see the full call here:

#BG10xEU Hackathon

On 12 and 13 May 2017, Bulgarian innovators interested in information technologies, programming, design, multimedia and marketing will give a technological response to theopportunities and challenges surrounding us. The #BG10xEU Hackathon will be held in Sofia Tech Park on the occasion of the 10-year membership of Bulgaria in the EU.

This event is initiated by the Representation of the European Commission in Bulgaria and Sofia Municipality; Sofia Development Association, Software University, Webit Foundation, UPNETIX and the British Council in Bulgaria form the core of the organizing team.

The prestigious #BG10xEU Hackathon “10 Years of Bulgaria in the EU” will be held during and in a shared space with Sofia Science Festival. For a few days, Sofia Tech Park will be the innovation hub of Bulgaria. Are we going to display that we have better coders than many European cities and regions?

All who have technical skills, vision for the future, creative ideas and the courage to stand up for them and defend them are invited to participate in the hackathon.

The participants should register prior to 8 May 2017 and accept the general conditions for particpation in the Hackathon.

Those wishing to participate must register their teams of at least 2 and maximum 8 people:хакатон-2017

What is the TOPIC?
The topic of # BG10xEU Hackathon is dedicated to the 10 years of Bulgaria’s membership in the European Union. The goal is to find solutions to problems that we have not resolved yet or that lie ahead of us in the next 10 years, but we have not yet realized their salience.

Experience shows that each innovation makes its way with difficulty and it takes time before it is widely implemented. So, the Hackathon will focus on solutions that pave the way to the future.

What are the CHALLENGES?
         • Education: How can we prepare ourselves for the education of the future? What will the new jobs and the requisite new skills be? How can young people get access to training and employment opportunities that they need to succeed? How can we make sure that education and the demand for specialists are in synchronicity? There are many more questions that the hackathon participants ask themselves, and perhaps are already looking for a solution.

         • Environmental sustainability: How are we to solve environmental challenges? Are we ready to breathe more polluted air, especially in big cities? How are we to treat nature more responsibly? This is just a small part of the questions that we ask ourselves now; what would they be after 10 years and is it possible to propose solutions now?

         • Challenge! What are the challenges that await us, but we are still not aware of them? Is it not the time now to formulate them? What about seeking a solution that the world will need in 10 years? The future belongs to the brave and informed decisions.

What do winners get:
                                First prize: 10 000 leva
                           Second prize: 5 000 leva
                           Third prize: 3 000 leva

Special awards:
Eva Maydell, Member of the European Parliament and Ambassador of digital skills and Code Week, will award two hackathon participants with a visit to Brussels for Code Week 2017 programme events.

The teams have opportunity to present their projects to the partners of the initiative, who will themselves choose a project and will suggest the ways to support it.

#BG10xEU Hackathon “10 years of Bulgaria in the EU” will be held with the support of MOBILTEL, MICROSOFT and COCA-COLA HBC BULGARIA.

Hackathon partners are the Ministry of Education and Science, the Ministry of Economy, cultural centers of European countries in Bulgaria, Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski "- the Faculty of Mathematics and Informatics and the Faculty of Economics, University of Library Studies and Information Technologies, Technical University - Gabrovo, Bourgas Free University, Rousse University “Angel Kanchev”, American University in Bulgaria, NGO Links, Imperia Online, Fund of Funds.

More information can be found here:

Interregional InnoBridge Project Workshop


The 4th interregional InnoBridge project workshop took place in Tampere, Finland, from March 7 to 9th, 2017. The Tampere Region Council and the Foundation of Universities in the region of Castilla y Leon, Spain, presented their programmes and initiatives for fostering regional innovations and encouraging SMEs to utilize R&D findings. Both regions also proposed their own good practices that might be transferred to other interested localities, which varied from on-campus business representation to a staff person allocated to stimulate open data utilization for business purposes.

InnoBridge project is funded by the INTERREG EUROPE programme and unites eight partners from seven countries. Sofia Development Association takes part in it, also representing Sofia Municipality. Apart from SDA team, two representatives from Sofia Municipal Council and the Expert Council on Science and Education participated in the event.

Sofia hosts the first Sofia Innovation Camp this weekend

Sofia Municipality in partnership with the Green Sofia Division of the Sofia Development Association, together with the Ministerial Council and European Commission’s DG CONNECT are co-organizing the first Sofia Innovation Camp that will take place on 11th and 12th March 2017.

The camp will bring experts from diverse countries together to address policy challenges related to open innovation approaches for co-creating innovative public services, co-creating public disscusions on green topics, and co-creating the public administration.

The Camp is organised in the context of the forthcoming Bulgarian EU presidency in the first half of 2018.

The innovation camp will be a small-scale innovation dialogue leading to concrete results. The intention is to produce concrete proposals and prototypes for dealing with the challenges in the coming months.

Approximately 30 people will take part in the Camp. Participants are experts in their respective spheres and stakeholders of the specific challenges and have been selected by the organisers. Participants will be divided in dedicated workgroups, each one addressing a specific challenge.

Coalition of Positive Messengers Goes to Bucharest

The NO hate practitioners' meeting. Mainstreaming best practices, organized by the Civil Society Development Foundation (Romania) took place in Bucharest 1 – 4 March 2017.

The main aim of this event was to share experience and discuss possible mainstreaming of best practices related to countering hate speech in Europe. Participants from more than ten European countries were invited to share national realities related to the hate speech topic, to discuss differences in approaches used in different countries in order to counteract hate speech, and to plan new joint interventions in their local communities.

The event was a great opportunity to share the methodology and objectives of the project Coalition of Positive Messengers to Counter Online Hate Speech, implemented by 7 EU countries and coordinated by SDA. Snezhina Gabova from SDA participated in the event and presented the project in the first of the NoHate Talk sessions in the program.

Under the Coalitions project several training sessions for local stakeholders to design counter narratives to hate speech will be held in the partner countries (among them Croatia, Romania, Czech Republic, Greece). Interested CSOs will be invited to attend the local training sessions organized by SDA‘s partner in each of these countries. The event in Bucharest was an important forum to establish new connections and to exchange fresh ideas on an important but also challenging topic as hate speech.

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