Sacyr iChallenges receives 276 proposals from innovation agents with a higher international participation

  • The fifth edition of Sacyr’s open innovation program looks for agents from the innovation ecosystem to solve four business challenges

The fifth edition of Sacyr iChallenges confirms the international projection of the open innovation program of the P3 company. This year’s edition has closed the open call with 276 proposal submissions in total for the four challenges issued by the company. This represents a 13% increase compared to the 2021 call.

Additionally, international participation has increased by 20%, with proposals from up to 34 different countries like Spain, Chile, the United States, Colombia, Israel, Finland, the United Kingdom, Sweden, Italy, South Korea, or Ireland. The call has made its way to countries as varied as Gabon, Tunisia, or China, which shows the international nature of the initiative.

Marta Gil, Chief Strategy, Innovation, and Sustainability Officer of Sacyr, emphasized the higher participation rates this year: “It is gratifying to see how Sacyr iChallenges grows every year, thanks to the involvement of the best internal talent and the reception from the global innovation ecosystem. A program that consolidates with specific projects involving the different business divisions and has become a reference outside the company”.

“We want to keep evolving through better infrastructures and services, and therefore, we continue to explore new horizons, promote solutions, and think up other ways to design, build, and operate our infrastructures and services, with innovation and sustainability at the core for everything we do”, said Marta Gil.

Sacyr iChallenges is one of the drivers in Sacyr’s innovation and transformation strategy. With this open innovation program, Sacyr looks for new partners with whom to promote sustainable solutions that help improve the quality of life of citizens through better infrastructures and services.

Four challenges on sustainability

The four challenges of this edition of Sacyr iChallenges are focused on making some of Sacyr’s key activities more sustainable.

The challenges are: to promote the sustainable urban mobility, maximize renewable energy use; recovery of new materials; and reduce the carbon footprint in construction activities.

Program, deadlines, and selection criteria

The next phase of the process will be the evaluation of all the proposals received by the people in charge of the different business areas of Sacyr.

After this review, priority will be given to those proposals that offer the most innovative, efficient, and scalable solutions, technologies, or business models to solve the proposed challenges. In this phase, experts from the business lines become involved to provide first-hand knowledge of the solutions and work together to match the proposals with the challenge to be solved. After this process, the three best ideas per challenge will be selected and communicated during the month of October.

The teams leading the selected proposals will work together with Sacyr's business experts to develop solutions that will materialize in a pilot project. The selected teams will also receive mentoring from the sponsors of the challenges, directors of different Sacyr business areas, whose guidance will help drive these projects forward.

The iChallenges program finalizes with the celebration of the Sacyr Innovation Summit, which will take place in November, at the company's headquarters in Madrid. At this event, the selected innovative agents will publicly present their initiatives to solve the four challenges.

In addition, the Sacyr Foundation will recognize, as part of the 12th Edition of the Sacyr Innovation Awards, some of the solutions presented by the innovation community in Sacyr iChallenges.

A reference in innovation programs

This is the fifth edition of a program that is adding successful collaborations with new national and international innovation agents. Sacyr has been working with the innovation ecosystem for more than a decade in the creation of solutions with the aim of incorporating them into its business areas and always upholding sustainability as a reference value.

To date, Sacyr iChallenges has received a total of more than 1,250 proposals from all over the world to solve the challenges that have arisen in each of the editions, promoting different projects. This capacity for implementation is what has consolidated the program as a reference in innovation in the infrastructure and services sector, where it is challenging to innovate.

Some of the most outstanding projects from previous years are:

  • Together with Contilio, a British startup focused on the analysis of 3D data in construction sites using artificial intelligence, we have worked on automating the progress report of construction work from data from the environment such as drone flights, images, etc. The goal is to measure the evolution of the project more accurately and generate reports on the project status in real time.
  • In collaboration with scaleup Detektia, Sacyr is developing an early warning system to anticipate the geotechnical behavior of the terrain. The system is based on satellite imaging, multiple data sources, and different artificial intelligence models.

More information available at

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