Creating a sustainable diet can often take large amounts of time and effort – something students, workers and families don’t often possess in large amounts. While supermarket competition in Australia has allowed certain staple items to drop in price, maintaining both a healthy and sustainable diet can be challenging to a household budget.

On top of this and exacerbating the problem is the cost of sustainable food, which can be prohibitive. There are efforts to help sustain this type of diet in a community setting – community gardens are a good example. Often these are created by small groups of people who give up their spare time, and aren’t sustainable to service large population centres.

We know it’s hard for students, workers and families in Western Sydney to maintain a sustainable diet. UWS Sustainable Agriculture experts have been exploring the science behind achieving a sustainable diet. They want to push this to the next level and develop products or services which could enable the Western Sydney community to achieve a sustainable diet which is healthy, cheap and convenient.

Together with the University of Western Sydney, Google, Cisco and the New South Wales Government, PwC is piloting a new approach to public innovation and problem solving – and we want to tackle the problem of sustainable eating.

Our “open innovation” model brings together a wide mix of experience and expertise from business, governments, individuals and entrepreneurs to solve structural problems impacting growth and sustainability.

The following problem is being put to groups attending our upcoming innovation event at the UWS:

How do we create a new approach to developing innovative ways to accelerate a sustainable diet for students, workers and families in Western Sydney

As part of the Open Innovation process, teams will put together a solution for UWS, the main sponsor of this problem, potential investors and customers for the opportunity to work in a 12-week acceleration process alongside PwC and UWS. The process will help strengthen the chosen solution in order to attract demand.

Does this sound like a problem you want to solve? Then consider applying for the Open Innovation event, which takes place at UWS on September 6+7.

Applications close on Friday, 29 August – visit to submit an application and for more information on the event.

Our Open Innovation process has been proven successful in other areas. In 2012, we worked with Transport for New South Wales and other entrants to come up with solutions for the public transport system – multiple public-facing apps were developed during the process. To read more about the 2012 App Hot House, click here.