At this one-day event, contestants are presented with a problem statement for a systems engineering challenge relevant to our time, then given six hours to develop a solution. Contestants may use any MBSE tool, any modeling language, and any modeling methodology. They may bring other engineering tools and may use the Internet to do additional research. At the end of the working session, they present their solution to a panel of judges.
Contestants may compete in one of two categories: Individual and Team. A third award is conferred for Most Innovative—it may come from either Individual or Team contestants. Winners receive a certificate and a trophy. Judges evaluate each competitor based on their mastery of tools and modeling methodologies, systems thinking skills, innovation capabilities, creativity, communication skills, and ability to thrive under pressure.
Background and Context
Prolonged extreme drought combined with forces encouraging portions of the US population to migrate to desirable lower cost-of-living location are straining the natural ecosystem’s abilities to meet these demands in places like Arizona, home of Integrate23. Communities such as Rio Verde Foothills near Scottsdale have recently lost access to drinking water. Reservoirs such as Lake Mead are at all-time low water levels. These competing factors place ever increasing challenges on municipalities in these affected areas. New, innovative systems solutions are needed to meet the challenges that these competing demands place on the municipalities located in these regions.
Contestants come from the private sector as well as educational institutions, and from around the world.
Individual Michael Vinarcik, of SAIC
Team Tara Rhodes, Patrick Meharg, and Matt Johnson, all of Noblis
Most Innovative Daniel Scoggin and Derek Hughes
What’s it like to take part in this event? Listen to this 45-second account by Michael Vinarcik, the winner in the individual category in 2023. He appreciates the fact that the challenge was designed to truly test the modeling skills of the contestants and not one’s domain knowledge. And, in spite of the tight time-frame for the competition and the tough nature of the challenge, Michael said he had a great time and recommends you give it a try!