Innovation INvades Wilmington

Delaware Innovation Week 2018

Delaware Innovation Week is a misnomer. When an event encompasses NINE days of programming, you might just have to call it a happening.

Entering its fourth year, Delaware Innovation Week is a celebration of technology and innovation that runs from November 2-10, 2018. Parties, conferences, workshops (and more parties!) engage attendees in ”tracks” (not just classic tech tracks: it includes Civic and Access – think “diversity” and educational opportunity) that align with their areas of interest, from creative to development, and connect them to other innovators as well as decisionmakers from successful companies.

DIW began in 2015 with over 2,000 attendees and partners, and was established to align with Global Entrepreneurship Week to showcase Delaware’s technologists, entrepreneurs and leaders. Past events have included venture capitalists, awards ceremonies, coding case studies and entrepreneur bootcamps.

We talked with DIW’s Jeanette Lloyd, Media’s Senior Manager of Marketing and Partnerships, who has three years of DIW under her belt about what’s different in 2018.

Starting in 2017, DIW was able to bring several large companies to its business conference and were able to match them with small Delaware companies. Local products and services were introduced to corporate decisionmakers.

Lloyd said, “Having access to companies like Amtrak and Neutrality Properties and being able to connect them to locals and get them a meeting they might not normally be able to get was most exciting.”

One change from 2017 is a reduction in events. Lloyd describes this as an improvement.

“The events are more focused. It’s not about the quantity of events, it’s about quality. The events feel more curated.”

DIW’s past efforts to connect people – including event planners – has resulted in improved offerings. Not only do stakeholders, such as DIW’s Dev committee, convene to review DIW’s ideas for workshops and speakers, but they collaborate on events. The 2018 is carefully curated, with programming that matches the community’s desires, not simply what DIW predicts will be valuable.

“Panelists, keynotes and moderators can gear the conversation toward solutions people want.”

With partners like Great Dames (which is announcing the winner of its Remarkable Ideas Pitch Competition at a DIW event) and Delaware BioBreakfast, DIW’s growth is unsurprisingly stable and the pool of potential event topics and presenters is almost infinite.

Be sure to catch these events, which include our IN picks as well as those Lloyd recommends:

  • The first-ever DIW Kickoff, on Friday, November 02, 5–8pm at Delaware College of Art and Design, 600 N. Market Street. This is the place to meet sponsors and stakeholders, experience tech demos and consumer brands, and has been coordinated with DCAD’s monthly art gallery open house. Cash bar and free nibbles. It is free, but you must register.

  • Cocktails & Trends, on Tuesday, November 6, 7–9pm at the University & Whist Club, 805 N. Broom Street. Futurist and investment advisor Jim Lee of StratFI will share insights on both investments and aging, extending your quality of life and regenerative medicine. Cash bar and free nosh, as well as music by Sharon and Shawn Q. It is also free, but you must register.

  • Pick a track and attend that track’s talks – consider either the Business Conference, Tuesday, November 6, 9:30am–3pm at the Emerging Enterprise Center co-located at the New Castle County Chamber of Commerce, 920 Justison Street, or Dev Talks, Wednesday, November 7, 2–5:30pm at Delaware Technical Community College – Wilmington Campus, 300 N. Orange Street, Suite 1200. Both are free and require registration. Be sure to check out all the tracks’ offerings.

  • 1st Annual Women in Innovation & Technology Day, Thursday, November 8, 3–9pm at The Mill 1007 N. Orange Street. Meet other women interested in or working in technology/innovation fields, from peers to mentors, and discuss entrepreneurship, hacking the system and creating your own destinies. Free, registration required.

  • Wilmington Content Creators Meetup, Thursday, November 8, 6–8pm at the Wilmington Public Library, 10 E. 10th Street. Content creators, developers, YouTubers, filmmakers, bloggers, copywriters, social media influencers, will meet to collaborate, share ideas, and grow their content. Free, registration required.

Visit our Delaware Innovation Week event listing for more INfo.