Open Category Themes


For the WRO Open Category in 2020, teams are asked to come up with innovative ideas for the following sub-topics. Teams may choose one of the two areas (1, 2) to work on, but they can also choose to work on a project focusses on both areas.

Manufacture locally to avoid transportation

The transport of goods and people is one of the main sources of greenhouse gas emissions. Nearly 10,000 aircraft are in flight at any given time, nearly 40,000 cargo ships are at sea and hundreds of millions of cars and trucks are on the roads, powered by fossil fuels.
Robotic solutions to manufacture locally what we need are being sought. This would avoid having the goods travel thousands of kilometers by boat, plane, car and truck using fossil fuels. These solutions shall use energy coming from renewable sources.
Similarly, solutions that allow physical work to be carried out remotely without having to travel long distances are also sought. This would reduce need for flying or commuting.

Restoring nature’s ability to regulate the climate

Natural mechanisms capture greenhouse gases (mainly carbon dioxide) and sequester carbon while releasing oxygen. But humans have altered nature and these mechanisms so we need your team, the Climate Squad, to restore them.
Robotic solutions for reforestation and wetland restoration are being sought, as well as solutions to increase the absorption capacity of greenhouse gases in natural environments.
You may find inspiration around this topic in the Sustainable Development Goal No. 13 “Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts”, see more at:

General Rules – WRO 2020