City of Durham NIS Community Engagement

Durham Demo Day to Celebrate Innovation Partnership Program

Durham Demo Day to Celebrate Innovation Partnership Program

New ideas and technology are now percolating inside Durham City Hall and residents are invited to meet the local startup companies that made it happen during an event next month.

On Thursday, February 8 beginning at 5:30 p.m. at Hayti Heritage Center, located at 804 Fayetteville St., the four 2017 cohort participants in the City of Durham’s new Innovate Durham program will share presentations about their company and the work they did in partnership with City departments at the program’s first-ever Demo Day. The event is open to the public and will provide an opportunity for residents and other local startups interested in civic technology to see a model for government innovation in action.

"We're so pleased with how this first year of Innovate Durham has gone," said Josh Edwards, director of the City's Office of Performance and Innovation in the Budget and Management Services Department. "We know that to be a truly innovative organization it can't all come from inside of City Hall. Partnering with companies right in our backyard allows us to continue to make Durham a high performing and innovative organization."

Over 12 weeks, these four local startup companies worked with the City to solve problems that departments face or brought a new solution to a local government service. The program allowed each startup to partner with a department and test out their product. The Demo Day will act as a celebration of the first year of the program and will spotlight the four partner companies:

  • Dropark - a real-time parking app to help visitors find available public or private parking near their destination.
  • Talented - an experiential learning game platform that gamifies trainings to help improve learning.
  • 8 Rivers Networks - an optical wireless communications system that delivers gigabit speeds over air instead of fiber.
  • Lucid Dream VR - a virtual and augmented reality company that can visualize unbuilt structures or overlay data sets.

During the event there will be comments from City officials as well as presentations from the four partner companies. In addition, there will be a reception with light refreshments and a chance to ask questions of the startups. "We see this as a way to thank the first cohort of companies and highlight the work that they did," Edwards said. "We also want this to be an opportunity for startups or entrepreneurs that are interested in working with the City to find out more about the program and to apply for the 2018 cohort."

For more information about the Innovate Durham Demo Day or the Innovate Durham public-private partnership, contact Edwards at (919) 560-4111, ext. 20102 or

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