One of the purpose of the MEDAIA project is to create opportunities for various actors to connect and to facilitate the emergence of co-operations. To this end Yle (the Finnish BBC) and Metropolia started to develop the experiment in the fall of 2016 that would benefit both parties and result in something concrete. As a result Yle pitch an idea: they needed fresh ideas to develop Yle’s vaalikone, which is essentially a vote matcher – a voting advice application – where anyone can search for best possible candidate that they can vote in elections.
Yle and Metropolia decided to invite students to participate in the experiment and to connect with Yle. For this purpose Reverse Pitch format was chosen, because with that an organisation, Yle, can pitch a problem that needs to be solved to the audience and the audience to create solutions. Additionally the organisation can pitch a request new ideas or need to re-design products and or a services to the audience. Consequently it is the audience’s turn then to create possible solutions or ideas to solve the problem and/or create new prototypes for products/services. Therefore the audience then presents their ideas to the organisation. Subsequently out of the possible solution suggestions Yle can choose which ones, if any, they wished to take for next stage of development. Also, Yle had the option to choose some students to co-operate with them.
The two-day experiment started on Friday where all the participants introduced themselves and shared their area of expertise. Some were experienced coders, where as other were studying journalism. After the introduction Yle made their pitch to the students who were then divided into groups of three to four members. Subsequently the groups started to develop the new updated vote matcher preto- an prototypes. The students were told that they can develop any kind of new vote matcher updates, therefore no restrictions or limitations were set either by Yle or Metropolia. All throughout Friday representatives from Yle and teachers from Metropolia were available to offer their advice and suggestions to the students while they were working on their prototypes. On next Monday the students presented their prototypes to representatives from Yle and Metropolia, which was followed by a detailed feedback session during which the students were given feedback on their vote matcher prototypes and overall presentations.
Overall Yle and Metropolia were highly impressed of the good quality prototypes that the students had designed. After the two-day Reverse Pitch -session Yle was interested in working with some of the students and to continue developing their prototype into actual new vote matcher apps for the coming elections in 2018. We from MEDAIA-project are extremely happy that Reverse Pitch was a success both in idea-wise and being able to connect students with Yle.