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

The complete guide to changing your phone system provider

Optimise your phone system for better business results

Download now

Simplify cluster security at scale

Centralised secrets management across hybrid, multi-cloud environments

Download now

The endpoint as a key element of your security infrastructure

Threats to endpoints in a world of remote working

Download now

2021 state of IT asset management report

The role of IT asset management for maximising technology investments

Download now

Recommended

The IT Pro Podcast: What COVID-19 can teach us about open data
Data & insights

The IT Pro Podcast: What COVID-19 can teach us about open data

30 Oct 2020
The future tech helping battle the pandemic
Technology

The future tech helping battle the pandemic

20 Oct 2020
Transforming training with virtual reality
Careers & training

Transforming training with virtual reality

20 Oct 2020
Salesforce aims to help manage coronavirus vaccine demand
sales & CRM

Salesforce aims to help manage coronavirus vaccine demand

29 Sep 2020

Most Popular

Do smart devices make us less intelligent?
artificial intelligence (AI)

Do smart devices make us less intelligent?

19 Oct 2020
Best MDM solutions 2020
mobile device management (MDM)

Best MDM solutions 2020

21 Oct 2020
What is Neuralink?
Technology

What is Neuralink?

24 Oct 2020