of the Hackathon
of coal mining cities
Mine new ideas!
On December 3-10, 2021, the Hackathon of Coal Mining Cities "Mine New Ideas!" took place. It was one of the steps to solve energy and environmental problems, as well as revitalize the territories of Ukrainian coal mono-cities.
International experiences demonstrate examples of successful transformations of coal regions into modern, promising, and ecological cities. Although not so long ago it was impossible to think about Ukraine's involvement in the decarbonization movement and the use of hydrogen - we are here now. Therefore, the main focus of transformation should be the future and real prospects of coal mining regions.
Deputy Minister, Ministry of Energy of Ukraine
The hackathon of coal mining cities took place online on December 3-10, 2021. The event is part of a UNDP project "The Butterfly Effect: Piloting Research to Support the Launch of Transformation of Ukraine's Coal Mining Regions".

The event was organized by the SYNCHRO SPACE team together with the Ukrainian League of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs (ULIE), with support of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Ukraine and in collaboration with the Ministry for Communities and Territories Development, Ministry of Energy, Ministry for Reintegration of the Temporary Occupied Territories та Ministry of Digital Transformation, city administrations of Chervonohrad і Myrnohrad, and Lviv and Donetsk Regional State Administrations.

This year's event brought together authorities and international organizations, teams of scientists, teachers from leading universities, businesses, startups, and local NGOs from around Ukraine and the world.
Thanks to the synergy of efforts of central executive bodies, local authorities, and local governments in cooperation with business and research institutions, we will be able to develop project ideas and turn them into complex development projects of each community.
General Director of the Regional Policy Directorate of the Ministry for Communities and Territories Development.
During the opening of the Hackathon on December 3, 2021, Alisa Bankovska, founder of SYNCHRO SPACE, UNDP System Transformation Coordinator, spoke about the "butterfly effect" in the transformation of Ukrainian cities.

The transformation of the pilot cities of Chervonohrad and Myrnohrad can be an example of the "butterfly effect" when minor changes turn coal mono-cities into prosperous regional players. Many countries have already gone the way of giving up coal. Thanks to innovative tools, we can also effectively stop using coal. One of the tools is the Hackathon. And because this measure is supported at various levels, and the results are ready to implement, its effectiveness is dramatically increased.

The key stakeholders of the project also shared recommendations on promising solutions to the hackathon participants.

The goal is Ukraine's transition to sustainable energy in the most inclusive way possible. After all, the refusal to use coal is depriving some communities of one of the key sources of livelihood. However, moderate promotion and community involvement through change, such as the current pilot study, can be the beginning of great changes - because these changes are based on true facts and people's expectatio
Deputy Resident Representative in Ukraine, UNDP
The opening ended with a presentation of the results of the UNDP project "The Butterfly Effect: Piloting Research to Support the Launch of Transformation of Ukraine's Coal Mining Regions" by Oksana Udovik, the Head of UNDP Acceleration Lab, and Alissa Ban'kovska.
On December 4, the event's participants were inspired by the public lecture program and started working on projects. Within the framework of the Hackathon, 20 strong teams were selected. They actively developed solutions for the transformation of Myrnograd and Chervonohrad during the next week. Three group mentoring sessions and more than 18 individual consultations with Ukrainian and international experts took place during the three-day intensive project work.

On December 10, 2021, 12 teams presented 14 decisions. The jury and experts chose the most promising solutions for piloting in Chervonohrad and Myrnohrad, as well as for scaling in other coal mono-cities.

The honorary jury included 22 representatives from various ministries, international organizations, and associations, namely: Ministry of Community and Territorial Development of Ukraine, Ministry of Energy, Ministry of Digital Transformation, Office of Reforms of the Cabinet of Ministers, USPP, UNDP, GIZ, USAID, Western NIS Enterprise Fund, European Enterprise Network, Embassy of the Netherlands in Ukraine, Embassy of the United Kingdom in Ukraine, Association of Small Towns, City Administrations of Myrnograd and Chervonohrad, Donetsk Regional Administration.
The five most promising projects were selected according to the voting results.

The winners are:
East Neoindustrial Team "MINT"
Industrial park on the territory of mine "5/6" in the city of Myrnograd, Donetsk region. In the industrial park, there will be a museum of the industrial history of Ukraine, which will include the front office of the industrial park, the center of creative industries, industrial accelerator, halls for exhibitions and conferences. The project is primarily designed to scale existing businesses of the region by incubating and accelerating them. The result of the project will be a change in the structure of the city's economy through the creation of new jobs and diversification of sources of revenue to the city budget.
Green Artlab
Revitalization of the territory of the Nadiya coal mine to create a Nadiya recreation and leisure park (including Nadiya exhibition, rope park, climbing wall, interactive amphitheater, Shakhtar museum and shop, kinetic plates, catamaran station, "Forest energy trail", slagheap reclamation, water purification, creation of a diving center, smart laboratories, infrastructure for active recreation on the slagheap) providing the cultural and social ecosystem services (health and sensory information), regulatory services, soil protection, neutralization of polluting substances).
"Chysta Voda" from science park "Kyivska Politekhnika"
The project's aim is the purification of mine waters with the help of modern technologies. Also, it is providing high-quality water to the population, agriculture, industrial enterprises.
GeoTherm Project
by "Dniprovs'ka Politekhnika"
Ecologically safe use of the thermal resource of water of mine 5/6 in Myrnograd. It will reduce CO2 emissions and provide heat to local infrastructure.
Revitalization of the Nadiya mine heap through the implementation of a general recultivation project. It is a part of the future infrastructural transformation of the Chervonohrad Mining and Industrial District based on sustainable development.
The winning projects will be able to pilot their solutions in Myrnohrad and Chervonohrad with the support of various stakeholders, as well as the opportunity to scale in other coal-mining cities.
The projects proposed at the Hackathon are aimed to bring a fair transformation in these regions, to create new jobs, to address socio-economic and environmental issues. I am very proud that we were one of the first to support the Hackathon. And the Ministry of Energy will assist the winners in implementing their projects.
Deputy Minister, Ministry of Energy of Ukraine
The rest of the projects that were not among the five winners were also of interest to the jury and have prospects for further development.

  • "Vugleinnovatsiya" – a project uses low-potential energy sources (including mine water, ventilation air, heaps) of mine "5/6" for heat supply.
  • Lviv/ANILSAM project 1 – a project of the coal-chemical complex "THERMOTEC POWER", which is one of the world's leading gasification technologies.
  • Myrnohrad Innovation Hub – the creation of a platform focused on the provision of social services by public associations, searching and co-financing local small and medium-sized businesses.
  • Green Power Hybrid – underground storage facilities for hydroelectric power plants as a way to use mine water in abandoned coal mines.
  • Chervonohrad 2.0 – project solves the city's infrastructural problems by creating profile instructions.
  • Tehmet – physico-chemical treatment of highly saline mine waters, which reduces treatment costs and eliminates radionuclides.
  • Lviv/ANILSAM project 2 – arrangement of a local solar power plant for energy production and increasing the energy independence of the utility facility in order to provide jobs and reduce the cost of electricity.
  • Bioplato – the use of bio plates for the purification of water contaminated by mine emissions.
  • SYNAPS – the project of the energy center for Chervonohrad.
We are interested in such projects as East Neoindustrial Team "MINT", Green Artlab, EcoMining, GeoTherm. We see in them the potential for urban transformation and are ready to help draw the attention of foreign partners. And I hope that these important initiatives will receive feedback from potential investors.
Co-Chair of the German-Ukrainian Energy Partnership
On December 16, with the assistance of the Deputy Group on Fair Transformation of Coal Regions headed by Yuriy Kamelchuk and Victoria Hryb, at the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine summed up the Hackathon in the format of DEMO DAY: Transformation Projects for Coal Regions - INNOVATION, ECOLOGY.

At the same time, a multi-illustrated research book by Valentyna Lazebnik “The European Footprint in the Formation of Ukrainian Industry. The middle of the 19th - the beginning of the 20th century.”

This book is created to promote the idea of ​​preserving the industrial heritage in Ukraine: the creation of a network of technical museums based on industrial enterprises subject to closure with the prospect of their inclusion in the European Industrial Heritage Route (ERIH).
The event was organized by the Ukrainian Union of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs together with the Hub of Innovation for Cities SYNCHRO SPACE, as well as the publishing house "Summit Book".

Participants of the event were People's Deputies of Ukraine, representatives of Ministries and departments, regional state administrations of coal regions, city administrations of coal cities, embassies in Ukraine (Netherlands, Germany, France, Belgium, USA, UK, Switzerland), international organizations (UNDP, USAID, GIZ, EU), WNISEF), higher education institutions, museums, and the public.
Promising projects are submitted to the competition. They are devoted to the development of alternative energy, preservation of industrial heritage, use of purified mine water, improvement of ecological situation, creation of industrial parks on the territories of mines Investors, the state, international partners, and the government have a choice now. In addition, it can be a crucial practice of maximizing the entrepreneurial initiative of local communities, based on the principles enshrined in the documents of the World Bank.

With the right approach, Ukraine can create the best models for closing mines and resuming economic activity in small mining towns.
Denis Krasnikov
Vice-President of the ULIE, Member of the Coordination Center for the Transformation of Coal Regions under the Cabinet of Ministers
SYNCHRO SPACE is a unique platform for synchronizing the activities of different specialists in order to jointly develop and implement innovative projects in the cities of Ukraine and the world.

By working with city halls, communities, scientists, startups, professionals, entrepreneurs, Ukrainian and international experts, we help address pressing urban challenges through innovative projects.

Join the community of smart city creators. Because with us are those who create the cities of the future!
If you want to become a sponsor or partner of the event - write here:
Innovation hub for cities SYNCHRO SPACE
The activity of the innovation hub for cities SYNCHRO SPACE (SP) is aimed at helping cities to solve current problems and challenges of innovative projects of teams of different professionals, startups, scientists and businesses. SYNCHRO SPACE conducts unique urban hackathons, own programs and activities, as well as introduces best foreign practices for urban development.
Ukrainian League of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs
The Ukrainian League of Industrialists and Entrepreneurs is a powerful public association, which includes representatives of large, medium and small businesses, traditional enterprises, factories with a century-old history and the elite of the latest high technologies, exporters and producers of products for the domestic market. The Union has a history dating back to February 15, 1992.
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