The ProFit project combined public & private partners to stimulate active lifestyle in public areas based on the field lab model in 5 cities in 4 countries
The ProFit project (an Interreg IV-B funded project) combined public & private partners to stimulate active lifestyle in public areas based on the field lab model. It aimed to innovate existing sports and physical activities by adding new forms of activity and game play, and to support this by developing the necessary equipment and infrastructure.
Within this project the concept of Field labs that was initiated in the Brainport region (Cluster Sports & Technology) was introduced and elaborated in 5 regions in the Interreg area. A supportive research program provided a better understanding of the Field Lab concept and scientific backing of the development & operation of the Field Labs and the innovative concepts & products. For this and future research & tests a number of methods have been developed and tools for monitoring & analysis are installed. Within the ProFit project two PhD candidates performed their scientific work.
In the five participating cities cooperation between municipalities, universities and companies created new links or enhanced existing contacts. At the same time a valuable international network for sports, play and movement innovation has been established.
The project resulted in a number of new concepts to promote physical activity, that were co-developed and evaluated in the field lab concept. Some more focussed on children activities like Twinkle Tiles or Swinxs, some more on young adults like Cone2020 or SmartGoals (see also www.fieldlabs.eu).
A total of 10 partners were working in a consortium, in a mix of field labs, knowledge institutes and cities, achieving one unified infrastructure.
The project was funded by the Intereg IV-B program with in total a budget of approx. 5,8 M€.
Evidence of success
The most important achievements have been:
• 5 Fieldlabs as innovative settings for product development in the field of sport and play
• Real novel research systems - the ‘user activity capture & data management systems’
• New and improved product innovations
• 2 new tools:
o the User as Co-researcher approach, a method to involve users in the innovation process
o the Value Design Canvas Method, a method to identify value relations between stakeholders and to develop strong business models
Public private innovations & value creation to stimulate healthy active life have a large potential. But the project showed that differences between cities & regions were rather high: city policy can be a driver for the innovation but can also be a burden in creating innovations and value
Potential for learning or transfer
The ProFit project sought to develop new & original forms of physical activity through innovative environments & facilities that add value to the user-experience and promote physical well-being.
The ProFit project has delivered Five Field Labs where innovations for sports and play are being developed. Within the ProFit Field Labs, local governments, knowledge institutes and businesses work together on the development of innovations for sports and play. This collaboration has raised awareness of, and improved capacities with regard to the importance & potential of innovation and business creation. Also the involvement of SMEs, in the promotion of sports and play and a healthy active, lifestyle, and the importance of a user-centred approach (experiences and motivations of end users as source of inspiration for the design of innovations) were elements that can be used in other regions in Europe that need to invest in the change of citizens behaviour into more healthy and active living.
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