Our challenge: Sustainable cities and communities

Sustainable development is a big challenge for cities and communites on many levels. At the same time, innovative sustainable approaches often arise in creative urban and suburban niches. They carry the potential to become scaleable solutions and change things for the common good. Our common good, in present and future.

We believe, that the German-Danish border region is a land of creativity, which can use its rich diversity to cross-culturally foster social and ecological transformations in municipalities all along the shoreline of the baltic sea and beyond.

Prove us right and enter the first crossborder innovation challenge with your innovative approach for the common good. A binational jury will evaluate your application and award the 12 most promising sustainable solutions at the Innovation Festival in Kiel on August 31st.

Conditions for participation

Crossborder connection

In 2019, the registration is open for applications from cities and regions of Kiel, Lübeck, Kolding and Roskilde.

Individuals, project groups, startups or companies - We encourage and invite everyone from the selected regions to contribute, as the smallest steps could lead to the greatest leaps.

Please note, that we can only consider applications from the specified regions of the German-Danish border region.


Either submit a crisp idea you plan to develop and implement or a mature product / service / process innovation (not older than 5 years).

Our common good selection criteria:

  • Ecological sustainability
  • Social benefit(s)
  • Innovative character
  • Scaling potential

Within these margins, approaches to any subject (e.g. mobility, health, gaming, digitalization, etc.) will be considered.


With a successful contribution, you can receive a row of supportive benefits such as:

  • Official crossborder innovation award as nominee and/or winner
  • Visibility and coverage via binational showrooms
  • Free co-working infrastructure
  • Establishing funding for prototype development or market entrance

We do not directly supply the awardees with monetary prizes as we want to cherish and support each application individually.

Our aim is to promote and provide a cooperative challenge, including support activities for funding as a second step.

What´s next?

Application phase compleated, if you missed the deadline this year, we are looking forward to your application in 2020!

If you have any questions, don´t hesitate to contact us.

The process

Nominations compleated:
Due to the high quality and diversity of our applications we decided to change the original plan. Instead of 20, we are excited to invite the 38 most promising sustainable solutions for the common good to be presented at the Innovation Festival 2019 at Anscharpark Kiel. There up to 12 winners will be awarded.

Each application has been discussed and evaluated regarding its sustainable, innovative, social and scaleable potentials.

The process

On August 31st, the 38 nominees will showcase their developed concept presentation to the jury members and the public audience at the Innovation Festival in Kiel.

After the jury consultation, up to 12 presentations will receive our official crossborder innovation award. In addition, there will be an audience award throughout public voting.

The award winners will receive further individual support on infrastructure, showrooms, funding and marketing.

The process

The crossborder innovation award is not only a visible distinction for the innovative and sustainable potential of the contribution for the common good.

In addition it qualifies for subsequent supportive benefits such as:

  • free coworking infrastructure in our innovation hubs (6 months)
  • free participation at showrooms in Germany/Denmark (coverage of travel&accomodation costs possible) to increase crossborder visibility and contacts
  • support to acquire funding for prototype development and market entry
  • support in public relations and marketing for visibility and coverage
  • access to the VekselWirk community to exchange knowledge beyond borders

Meet the Winners

We congratulate these 12 awarded Ideas, which have been selected as a scalable solution to enable the much needed change for the common good. Welcome to the Crossborder Innovation Community!

100% Biocomposite Material

Niklas Jessen, Lena Reetz

Goldeimer Closed Loop Diaper System & Carbon Sanitation

Malte Schremmer, Enno Schröder


Aladedin El-Jomaa


Paul Brößke, Nils Weiher

Marktschwärmer Kiel

Nele Markwardt

Microgreens Danmark / Gro Lys

Hjalmar van der Buchwald


Carl-Felix Lentz

School of Unverpackt

Marie Delaperrière

Silkroad of Sustainability

Jannes Neuner, Dorian Dethloff, Tabea Wendenburg


Sergio Daniel Hoffmann de Ccahuana


Kristian Grove Poulsen

World of Swings

Sinja Möller

Meet the nominees

We are thrilled to present our 38 nominees! 38? YES! Due to the high quality and diversity of the applications, we decided to change the original plan. Instead of 20 we are excited to invite the 38 most promising sustainable solutions for the common good to be presented at the InnovationsFestival 2019 at Anscharpark Kiel.


Marcel Lungershausen

College Curries

Nils Lalleike

Designleitfaden für kleine Museen

Rike Gloy-Brüchmann, Anna Bandholz, Astrid Becker

Edible City Lübeck

Hansestadt Lübeck - Bereich Umwelt-, Natur- und Verbraucherschutz

FairNetz Kiel

Julian Sonntag, Henriette Scholz

Fangfrisch Lübeck

Tristan Wilcken


Duncan Mc Geough

Glückslokal e.V.

Nina Lage-Diestel


Johann Olsen, Felix Kruse, Nabil Imran

Kalle - Organic waste bin

Levke Schacht


Bernadette Büsgen

New Gründungsviertel

Hansestadt Lübeck - Team Gründungsviertel

ONE Fairtrade & Kaffeerösterei

Aykut Kayabas

Not a game!

Philipp Spiegel

Permakulturzentrum e.V.

Daniel Müller


Sofie Peters


Hannes Popken


Iben Østergaard Fog, Svetlana Petrova

Reapir Café Kolding

Tina Klemmensen

Rubbish-Art Turns Waste to Wealth

Lisa Buddemeier


Svantje-Kristina Schmidt

Sportzentrum Falkenwiese

Frank Schroeder


Sergio Daniel Hoffmann de Ccahuana

Sun L'Ocean

Jasmin Rötzer


Frank Dehnhard

Wurzel.Bildung e.V.

Felicia Hofstätter

Zero Waste Certification

Marc Delaperrière

About us

We are VekselWirk. A binational interreg-project in the border region of Germany and Denmark, that interconnects five innovation hubs to a vivid crossborder ecosystem.

We are an organization of dedicated supporters of different origin that believes in the freedom and the power of creativity and its capacity to improve society and business.

Within our partner regions Kiel, Kolding, Lübeck and Roskilde, we enable inspiring creators in non-metropolitan areas to realize their innovative ideas in a self-determined way, by providing the right place, atmosphere, connections and tools on demand.

Our five innovation hubs Anscharcampus (Kiel), Opencampus (Kiel), Business Kolding (Kolding) Technikzentrum Lübeck (Lübeck) and Handelsskole (Roskilde) are coordinated by community managers and embedded in a broad crossborder partner network.

Learn more about us and our activities on: vekselwirk.eu

Our partner network

As Lead-Partner, the Heinrich-Böll-Foundation Schleswig-Holstein is coordinating the project VekselWirk and responsible for the crossborder innovation challenge, co-funded by the city of Kiel.

Meet the jury

Our binational jury is an assembly of inspiring people from municipalities, politics, business, science, art and design. The jury members also represent the VekselWirk advisory board, which accompanies the project strategically.

Dario Arndt

General manager
(Wirtschaftsförderung Lübeck)

Leendert Bjerg

Business consultant
(Business Kolding)

Thomas Ehlert

Regional manager
(Kiel Region)

Teresa Inclan

Educational consultant
(Kiel School of Sustainability, Project yooweedoo)

Prof. Frank Jacob

(Muthesius Kunsthochschule Kiel)

Susanne Kasimir

Science commissary
(City of Lübeck)

Jessica Kordouni

Chairwoman of city council group
(Die Grünen, Kiel)

Jesper Legaard

Industrial designer
(Kolding Design School)

Lea Lückemeier

District manager
(Kiel Gaarden)

Antje-Britt Mählmann

Art manager
(Kunsthalle Lübeck)

Gudrun Neuper

Organizational consultant

Merete Due Paarup

City council member

Christina Schubert

City council member
(SPD, Kiel)

Wolfgang Schulz

Former city council member
(SPD, Kiel)

Volker Sponholz

Project manager
(Department "creative city" Kiel)

Frauke Wiprich

Policy advisor for sustainable development
(City council Kiel)