Azerbaijan’s first global virtual hackathon was held last weekend, organised by the country’s Ministry of Transport, Communications and High Technologies together with UNDP and SUP.VC, bringing together over 600 applicants from over 40 countries across the world to come up with ideas and solutions to help people cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.
The jury of international and national innovation experts and practitioners had a difficult task selecting the winning applications.
The first prize ($5,000) went to ‘Crisis Heroes’ from Poland fordeveloping a virtual marketplace matching people and organisations which can help each other during the pandemic crisis.
The second prize ($3,000) went to ‘Javid-19’ from Azerbaijan for their idea to help support SMEs through a voucher scheme allowing people in isolation to buy goods and services in advance at a discount.
And the third prize ($2,000) went to ‘Zebrafish’ from Brazil for their work on a rapid kit that speeds up the detection of COVID-19 antigens with the help of zebrafish.
Over the coming weeks, the three winning teams will be working together with mentors to bring their ideas and solutions to life.
Numerous national partners and sponsors joined the hackathon, including Pasha Bank, Socar AQS, Azerbaijan’s Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources, the Ministry of Education, the Women’s Committee on Family, Women and Children Affairs, ABAD, Azerbaijan Tourism Board and State Tourism Agency, the Public Health and Reforms Center of the Ministry of Health, AzCloud and AzInTelecom, and Data Processing Center.
International partners and sponsors included Amazon WES, European Startup Network, Startup Grind, Hackquarters, Tekwill, Astana Hub, Fongogo, Silicon Valley In Your Pocket, Start-IST, MeOut and Startup Weekend.