WHO collaborates with Big Tech for mega COVID-19 hackathon

Developers are invited to join the industry-wide effort to help communities and businesses through the pandemic

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has partnered with major tech firms to launch a global hackathon, with developers invited to support the COVID-19 fightback and businesses struggling through the pandemic.

Developers are being encouraged to register their interest for the week-long event to be held in April, designed to build and generate software that can tackle some of the wider economic and social challenges related to the pandemic.

Entries into the #BuildforCOVID19 hackathon can be based around several themes outlined by WHO, including health, vulnerable populations and community, as well as education, businesses, and entertainment.

Developers are also being encouraged, however, to get creative with their entries and don’t need to necessarily stick to these ideas.

The spread of the virus has had a measurable impact on healthcare systems, government agencies, and businesses from all sectors over the course of 2020.

While many companies have had their workforce shift to remote working, others have seen revenues dry up and business grind to a halt.

Registration has opened with Devpost, a company that hosts countless hackathons each year, with developers able to submit completed projects from 26 March until 9am PST (5pm BST) on 30 March. All entries must be submitted alongside a two-minute video walkthrough.

The judges, who are yet to be announced, will offer feedback after the deadline, before connecting with the highlighted projects and showcasing these on 3 April 2020.

The likes of Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and Slack will support individuals submitting projects into the hackathon with company resources. They will also be joined by Giphy, Pinterest, TikTok and WeChat.

“With the World Health Organization (WHO) declaring coronavirus (COVID-19) a global pandemic, governments have issued guidance for members of the community to practice social distancing, while companies have enforced work from home policies in an effort to flatten the curve of viral infections across the population,” Devpost said.

“Given the isolation currently being experienced within communities right now, we want to create an online space where developers could ideate, experiment and build software solutions to help address this crisis.”

Successful entries can either take the shape of a production-ready platform for immediate impact, or an “awesome proof-of-concept” with bags of potential.

Examples that fall into the latter, more conceptual category include tools for helping people with supplies, combating loneliness, or replacing income with work-from-home options. Production-ready projects will be favoured by the judges, however.

There are no cash prizes, with the reward for successful projects being a combination of social impact and recognition throughout the wider tech community and partner networks.

Featured Resources

Preparing for AI-enabled cyber attacks

MIT technology review insights

Download now

Cloud storage performance analysis

Storage performance and value of the IONOS cloud Compute Engine

Download now

The Forrester Wave: Top security analytics platforms

The 11 providers that matter most and how they stack up

Download now

Harness data to reinvent your organisation

Build a data strategy for the next wave of cloud innovation

Download now

Recommended

US government renews COVID-19 vaccine distribution agreement with Palantir
platform as a service (PaaS)

US government renews COVID-19 vaccine distribution agreement with Palantir

26 Jul 2021
How LSE is using digital technology to shape the future of higher education
digital transformation

How LSE is using digital technology to shape the future of higher education

15 Jun 2021
Smart devices more than doubled in US homes amid COVID pandemic
Mobile Phones

Smart devices more than doubled in US homes amid COVID pandemic

9 Jun 2021
How to manage people successfully from a distance
Business strategy

How to manage people successfully from a distance

9 Jun 2021

Most Popular

RMIT to be first Australian university to implement AWS supercomputing facility
high-performance computing (HPC)

RMIT to be first Australian university to implement AWS supercomputing facility

28 Jul 2021
Tesla Megapack goes up in flames at Australian battery site
Hardware

Tesla Megapack goes up in flames at Australian battery site

30 Jul 2021
PwnedPiper flaws threaten infrastructure of 80% of US hospitals
Security

PwnedPiper flaws threaten infrastructure of 80% of US hospitals

2 Aug 2021