The Open Geneva Association

Open Geneva is a non-profit association, based in Geneva, whose mission is to promote and stimulate open innovation by bringing innovators together, bringing their ideas to life, communicating their projects and supporting their development in the fields of art, science, technology and society.

The main activity of Open Geneva is the organisation of the Open Innovation Festival in Geneva. During this festival, public institutions, universities, research centres, local and multinational companies, associations and citizens organise moments of innovation and sharing, such as workshops, hackathons and conferences.

Open Geneva is...

During the week of the festival, 30 hackathons and workshops took place in several locations in the city of Geneva


At the Geneva Solutions conference, the meeting with Ruta Nimkar, who develops fablabs for Terre des hommes, made an impression on us: "What do we need in the refugee camps? Innovation!

...of places

There is nothing like an inspiring place to encourage the creativity of the teams who have imagined the mobility of tomorrow at Idea Square, CERN in the presence of some twenty Akka engineers.


With the sensor, the patient breathes in and out to raise or lower the vessel. It calms him down and at the same time stimulates his breathing exercises.

Discover the story of Open Geneva as told by its community


Open Geneva was created in 2015 by the Geneva Creativity Center in collaboration with theUniversity of Geneva, the HES-SO Geneva, the SITG and the TPG to promote open innovation in order to improve the quality of life in Geneva through the use of open data. During the first edition, several teams of students worked during two weekends on scientific projects and social and technical innovations related to energy, health and mobility. The 2016 edition broadened the profile of its participants and focused on health, in close collaboration with the University Hospitals of Geneva.

In 2017

Open Geneva has become a Festival of Hackathons. Thanks to the support of the Digital Strategy of the University of Geneva, more than 21 initiatives took place from 12 to 14 May, involving schools and research centres, administrations and companies, public and private structures. Around 400 participants of all profiles developed more than 50 innovative projects, some of which are still growing. This spontaneous enthusiasm confirms that there is a real desire for open innovation in Geneva and that it should be supported.

In 2018

For its 2nd edition, the Open Geneva open innovation festival took place from 9 to 15 April 2018 and gathered nearly 800 participants in 31 hackathons and co-creation moments, and around 400 participants in various events, such as conferences, workshops and open doors, as well as an event to close the week and present the outcomes of the challenges (Hack Show) on Sunday 15 April.

In 2019

For this 3rd edition of the innovation festival from 18 to 24 March 2019, 22 hackathons and 8 workshops were organised throughout the city, bringing together nearly 1200 participants . Open Geneva is also a forum for public debates with 3 conferences held during the festival on topics related to digitalization in society (Cyber Nexus), international and humanitarian Geneva (Geneva Solutions) and the sustainable city (Sustainable Cities). The festival was followed by the Innovation Festival on 28 May 2019 at Campus Biotech. The aim is to showcase the results of the hackathons together with our network of acceleration partners, and finally to expand to the French-speaking region of Switzerland and the French Genevois.

In 2020

Due to health and regulatory developments related to the spread of the covid-19 virus, Open Geneva found itself unable to guarantee the framework of the festival, which should have taken place from 19 to 29 March 2020, with a programme of 43 events. Open Geneva proposed a new innovation highlight at the end of the year, with theAutumn of Innovation. Online and hybrid events were introduced!

In 2021

Open Geneva organised its 5th Open Innovation Festival in the Greater Geneva area from 18 to 28 March 2021. Given the health conditions, the Festival took place 100% online with over 30 events on the programme bringing together 1500 people. This festival was a great moment of collective learning, a place for training in the skills that have become essential in the post-covid digital era, namely digital skills. By organising its first 100% online innovation festival, Open Geneva explored new forms of participation in innovation for its community, made available new collaborative tools and trained in new skills.

In 2022

Open Geneva organised the 6th edition of the Greater Geneva Open Innovation Festival from 17 to 27 March. More than 50 events - online, in-person and hybrid - animated the innovation community throughout the city. More than 1000 participants took part in the workshops, hackathons and conferences. The opening of the Festival with the Geneva Trialogue, organised by UNITAR and the University of Geneva, strengthened the Festival's international coverage. In 2022, thanks to a wide range of diversity of formats and audiences and audiences reached, the Festival has become very inclusive and has strengthened its role as an activator of civil society in the innovation process.

Festival 2022 Report

In 2023

Open Geneva organized the 7th edition of the Open Innovation Festival in Greater Geneva from March 16 to 26, 2023.

30 venues in Greater Geneva, including 14 partner spaces such as FER Genève and Les Voisins, hosted the 42 Festival events. Over 1,000 participants took part in the free workshops, hackathons and conferences. The opening of the Festival with the Geneva Trialogue, organized by UNITAR and the University of Geneva, consolidated the Festival's international coverage. In 2023, participants were able to experiment with NFT technology at the service of events, making the Festival a highlight of innovation throughout the city.

Festival 2023 Report

History of the association's activity reports

Open Geneva for Hackathon Science

Reference : Miendlarzewska, E., Anastasaki, A., Gomez Teijeiro, L., Maillart, T. and Ugazio, G., Play and work for greater good: the case of hackathons, accepted to European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS), 2021

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Open Geneva was incorporated as a non-profitassociation in October 2017, with members representing various institutions (academic, private, semi-public, public) among the most dynamic and innovative in Geneva.

Open Geneva is an association committed to gender equality

Gender Equality Plan

The members of Open Geneva:

The Open Geneva Committee:

  • Thomas Maillart (Chairman)
  • Afroditi Anastaski (Vice-Chair)
  • Justin Cornut (Secretary)
  • Cyril Jaquet (Treasurer)
  • Helena Bornet Dit Vorgeat
  • Fabio Balli


Applications for admission to join the association may be made to the Committee, which shall admit new members on the recommendation of two members and inform the General Assembly.


Federating a community of innovation actors in Geneva

One of the strengths of Open Geneva is the mobilisation and animation of a lively community of innovation actors in Geneva (hackathon organisers, project leaders, accelerators, etc.) throughout the year, in order to circulate knowledge, resources, feedback and encourage knowledge sharing.

Digitalising the organisation of hackathons

One of the added values of Open Geneva is the provision of a web platform, the Sparkboard, which facilitates the organisation of hackathons, documents the projects, ensures their follow-up and online visibility, and creates a direct interface between the different actors of the community, including the accelerator programmes in the Lake Geneva region.

Open Geneva is continuously developing and improving this platform to best fit the needs of innovation actors.

To find out more about the Sparkboard, click here

Promoting projects and communicating on open innovation

A project does not exist if it is not talked about. Whether it is within the community of innovators, in the media, or with acceleration partners, projects need to be visible in order to find resources, be they technical, financial, human, logistical, etc. Open Geneva develops tools and events with many partners, including media, to promote projects and open innovation.

In an effort to share knowledge and promote open innovation, Open Geneva provides free downloadable documents to learn about open innovation:

"How to organise a hackathon?and howto use the project platform?"

Open Geneva has developed a platform to support innovative projects: Open Geneva Crowdsupport. The objective: to directly involve the community in the development and support of innovative projects by combining participatory financing and in-kind contributions!

Testimonials from our partners

Our Offices

Open Geneva
C/O: SDG Solution Space - UNIGE
Avenue de Sécheron 15
1202 Geneva

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