By Akbar Mammadov
Azerbaijan hosted the Global Virtual Hackathon competition on technological solutions to combat the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic on April 10 and 12, the Ministry of Transport, Communications and High Technologies reported in its official website.
The competition was held in connection with the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, and searched for ways to combat the virus worldwide and ways of switching to remote working mode. It had been organized by the ministry jointly with the United Nations Development Programme and the SUP.VC Acceleration Center.
Around 600 applicants from 45 countries covering five continents registered to participate in the Global Virtual Hackathon by registering at www.hackcov19.com.
The team “Crisis Heroes” from Poland won the competition after developing a virtual platform that brings people and organizations together to help each other during a pandemic.
The second place was taken by the Azerbaijani team “Javid-19”, which presented the idea of supporting small and medium-sized businesses through vouchers. The third place went to the Brazilian team “Zebrafish”, which offered equipment for rapid testing for coronavirus antigens using zebrafish.
The final decision of the jury has been based on the effectiveness of the proposed solution, as well as on how easily and quickly the idea can be implemented at the local, regional and international levels.The winner of the first place will receive $5,000, the second place – $3,000, and third place – $2,000. Prizes will be transferred to the winners’ bank accounts.
During the competition, the teams also asked their questions through the Discord platform, held discussions and benefited from mentors’ support. Considering the large number of applications and the interest of ideas presented, it was decided to increase the number of selected ideas from 20 to 25.
The jury was composed of local and international experts in such areas as “Support those who are most vulnerable and at risk”, “Technology and healthcare”, “Support small and medium-sized businesses”, “Physical distance and social contact”, “Enhance awareness, shape appropriate behavior and take public opinion into account”, “Technology and education”, “Technology and engineering”, “Technology in everyday life”, etc.
Akbar Mammadov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AkbarMammadov97
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