Mondi, the global packaging and paper group, welcomed 50 PhD students from all over Europe to participate in the first Mondi Speed Data Hackathon.
The Hackathon challenged the PhD students in advancing conceptual ideas for innovations within the paper and pulp industry by applying big data solutions to production processes, energy use, finance, maintenance, human resources and sustainability. The students used industry insights from 14 Mondi experts as the basis for eight fresh innovation concepts.
The concept that convinced the jury most was titled ‘smart value chain’. It covered the full value chain for packaging and packed goods, with a focus on the end consumer, to create a closed feedback loop from the end consumer to the producer of the goods and packaging. Mondi has shared all results of the Hackathon with all participants in the spirit of open collaboration and knowledge sharing.
“Mondi’s culture embraces innovative approaches to evolve packaging and paper,” said Leo Arpa, head of research and development paper at Mondi. “At the Hackathon, these talented students have the opportunity to contribute to the future of the industry, and Austria, as one of Europe’s leading scientific hubs for packaging and paper, was the perfect venue. Mondi´s focus on research and development ensures that our customers and consumers benefit from highly efficient and sustainable processes and supply chains.”
The Hackathon was part of the three-day Cellulose Materials Doctoral Students Conference 2017, organised by Graz University of Technology under the auspices of the renowned European Fibre and Paper Research Organisation (EFPRO).
Tad Maloney, president of the European Fibre and Paper Research Organisation (EFPRO), said, “People are often surprised at just how much innovation is going on in the paper and packaging industry. It is very vibrant, with many organisations working on innovations that are right at the cutting edge of industry and science. By organising this year’s student workshop, Mondi showed its ongoing commitment to driving that innovation and its integral role in helping the industry to keep moving forward.”
The Hackathon is one example of Mondi’s many activities focused on innovation. The company is involved in numerous projects and collaborations and runs six innovation centres.