Hawa Dawa hosted their first “Smart City Meetup” on January 29. With exciting presentations and a high-level keynote from Fraunhofer Morgenstadt Initiative, Hawa Dawa was able to attract a wide audience – reaching from Smart City solutions providers, representatives from cities to interested citizens. The objective of this event was on putting spotlights on the various aspects of the topic “Smart City” and to provide a space for networking and exchange of ideas. The event focussed on the areas of “Smart City and air quality – the framework, impact and trends” and “Artificial intelligence and machine learning – working principles, applications and chances”. In his keynote speech on “Smart City – between technical capability and public needs” Dr Alanus von Radecki of the Fraunhofer Morgenstadt Initiative showed fascinating examples and provided exciting food for thought. After the presentations, the audience got engaged in lively and committed discussions with the Hawa Dawa experts and the invited speaker. Karim Tarraf, CEO and co-founder of Hawa Dawa, says: “We are very pleased with this great audience and we feel strongly encouraged by the high interest in the topic ‘smart city’ and its contribution to sustainability and healthier environment.”
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Every year, TechCrunch dives deep into the international startup scene to find innovative startups to compete in Startup Battlefield – TechCrunch’s famous global startup competition. Read more
Frage: Herr Tarraf, wie sind Sie auf die Idee für Hawa Dawa gekommen und was zeichnet Ihr Produkt aus?
Karim Tarraf: Ich habe mehrere Jahre in der internationalen Entwicklungszusammenarbeit gearbeitet. Die Erfahrungen, die ich während des frustrierenden Konzernjobs gemacht habe, gekoppelt mit den prägenden Erlebnissen im arabischen Frühling 2011 haben mich zum Gründen motiviert. Ich wollte nochmal die Bank in der Universität drücken, um dort Ideen zu entwickeln, mit denen ich ein Startup aufbauen kann. Wichtig bei diesem Schritt ist mir der social impact, also eines der großen gesellschaftlichen Probleme anzugehen – seien es Umwelt- oder soziale Themen. Read more
Hawa Dawa was selected as one of the businesses to be supported by the European Space Agency’s Business Incubation Programme in order to support them in integrating satellite data into their air quality models. The programme runs for 18 months and offers expert mentoring and coaching from the technical partners of the managing company, Anwendungzentrum GmbH, including the German Space Agency (DLR), financial support and office space.
Cairo: ideas through the smog
Our CEO and co-founder, Karim Tarraf, grew up in Cairo – a city displaying all of the typical traits of an emerging economy when it comes to air quality and health. His vision was to be able capture and visualize air quality data in such a way as to make it accessible to the population in developing countries, enabling cities and affected citizens take action to curb air pollution, improving health and quality of life.
Raw Meat & Canary Birds
Here at Hawa Dawa we follow an interesting lineage; from raw meat used in the 9th Century to detect the lowest levels of ambient pollution and thus situate a hospital; to canary birds who fell out of usage for detecting carbon monoxide in mining in the 1980s. In 2018, we’re not leaving it to chance: our data is gathered using a combination of proprietary IoT networks of gas sensors in the field and highly complex machine learning algorithms and artificial intelligence. The output is a reliable, comprehensive, real-time ‘heatmap’ of air pollution. A map that enables cities to be innovative, dynamic and targeted in the measures they employ to combat pollutant levels. No one else is offering this combination of bottom-up and top-down measurement: a viable, low-cost, digital alternative to costly official stations; a new digital value chain based on the commodity of environmental data.
Looking to the future in 2018
We are proud that almost 13 centuries after the first physicians recognized the value of understanding where and how air pollution affects lives, Hawa Dawa is able to offer the first reliable digital solution to measuring air quality, providing actionable insights to enable citizens, cities and companies understand and mitigate for the dangerous and costly effects of air pollution.