Fostering young women’s entrepreneurship and technical innovation, the
InnovaTech Challenge, organized by
, has welcomed more than 1,500 participants since its launch in 2016.
This year’s edition concluded in May in Paris to great excitement. On a quest for impact, NXP’s
Susanna Vargiu and Julie Athanassiadis worked their way to the finals from
our NXP sites in Sophia Antipolis and Toulouse respectively. Every step of
the way, they shared their expertise with aspiring, young female engineers
and collaborated on solving common social and environmental concerns.
Mentoring and Inspiring the Younger Generation
It was the first InnovaTech Challenge for Susanna, NXP Digital Verification
Engineer, and Julie, NXP Product Engineer. Julie was in team BIKEPOST
consisting of six people: one retired professional, two students from Lycée
Berthelot and two high school students. Susanna’s team F’AMI comprised
three high school students, an engineering school student and two
engineers, all combining fresh ideas and skills. Both teams reached the
grand finale having delivered a five-minute pitch for an innovative project
to a jury of women. In total, seventeen regional finalists contested in
Susanna Vargiu (left) and Julie Athanassiadis (right) at the 2023 InnovaTech Challenge Finals
Bright minds. Bright futures. NXP team members create breakthrough technologies that advance our world. The future starts here.
Harnessing the Power of Innovation to Address Common Concerns
Roughly 21% of France’s population is above the age of 65
a significant number of those people live alone
. As a result, social isolation of the elderly is becoming an increasing
concern for many in the country. Susanna’s team project, F’AMI, is
a global application for reducing social isolation among the elderly,
helping them in their everyday lives and improving their overall sense of
well-being. The easy-to-use app suggests online and in-person opportunities
for social connection based on users' interests, location, mobility and
Meanwhile, Julie’s team addressed a different need in France. A significant
amount of organic waste is currently disposed of in the country, with
mandatory compositing expected by 2024. Julie’s team project, BIKEPOST,
centered on recycling organic waste to produce biogas through fermentation.
Through fermentation, 10 m3 of the resultant biogas can create 7,72KWh of
electricity in about 20 days, enough to charge up eight e-bike batteries.
The energy can also be used for enterprises or campsites. The project came
in second in the rankings.
Fulfilling the Ultimate Goal
Susanna and Julie expressed great satisfaction with their teams’
performance, even more with the impact they made on the younger generation.
After the results were announced, Julie remarked: “Participating in the
InnovaTech Challenge was a superb experience. The challenge enabled us to
show that women have a place in the tech space. I am very proud that my team
came in second position.”
amazed by my team’s energy and ideas! The goal of this contest has always
been to empower young girls, attract them to engineering careers by showing
them what’s possible. I am glad we achieved that!”
Click here for a
video of the finale (in French).