Validation program

Startup in Residence The Hague is in full swing! A few months ago, 10 problem owners within the Municipality of the Hague set out a tender for urban challenges via the Startup in Residence programme (product of Impact City). We were happy to see that a great amount of startups signed up with their innovative solutions. In June, 12 of these startups were selected for 6 urban challenges.

The startups followed an intensive validation training from August 13th to September 4th at the impact startup hub Apollo 14 where they validated their solutions. They received lectures about customer segments, customer engagement, growth hacking, value propositioning and competitive advantages. Startups were also challenged to go into the city and online to interview their customers and really understand the problems they are facing so that they could pivot their solutions if necessary.

The validation program was facilitated by Ideahackers. Plenary theory sessions were organized in the mornings and 1-on-1 sessions in the afternoons in order to personally guide each startup. External professional mentors with specific expertise on the topic were invited to help each startup as well.

Every week had a specific theme:
Week 1 Customer engagement – getting an insight into the problem and the wishes of the customer
Week 2 Channel testing – testing the products in the market – finding the problem/solution fit
Week 3 Competitive advantages – what is your value proposition?


The startups vary from young passionate starters that recently finished their studies to more experienced entrepreneurs that have a great idea for a startup. The solutions are mostly technical and it is already clear that there are some very nice innovations! A great start to a possible co-creation with gemeente Den Haag and a perfect example of the opportunities that gemeente Den Haag offers for startups via its Impact Economy programme