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Source: Federal Ministry of Education and Research

01.10.2020Press release: 140/2020

At the end of the implementation program: The world’s largest hackathon #WirVsVirus produces numerous innovative applications

From March 20 to 22, more than 28,000 people took part in 1,500 digital projects in the federal government’s #WeVsVirus hackathon, the world’s largest hackathon against the corona virus. The aim of the hackathon was to develop ideas for applications that can help limit the social impact of the corona pandemic. The Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), the largest donor, has funded the further development and implementation of 34 promising ideas with a total of around 1.5 million euros. At the end of the implementation program on October 1, 2020, Federal Research Minister Anja Karliczek declared: “The pandemic presents us with numerous challenges every day. With innovative strength and creativity, many people in our country have been looking for possible solutions to the small and large problems that the responsible handling of the Covid19 virus brings with it since the beginning of the crisis. This is also the case within the framework of the federal government’s hackathon, where 147 specific project ideas were developed. I am delighted that, thanks to funding from the BMBF, 34 project ideas have been developed from the hackathon to prototype maturity since June. This resulted in exciting digital solutions that are useful for everyday use. This includes, for example, a widget, a screen element that can be used to make verified and verifiable information about Covid-19 available on websites free of charge. Or a protected, digital communication channel that was developed by the child and youth welfare service to care for families in need. With the funding of these projects, we were able to make an important contribution to further developing the creative potential of developers for Germany as a country of innovation. “Background: Details on the funded projects can be found at: https: // round-wvv / The organizers of the hackathon have set up an implementation program for which 130 project ideas were able to qualify. 34 particularly ambitious and innovative project ideas were identified as suitable for the ongoing BMBF funding measure “Prototype Fund”. The submitters of the respective project ideas were therefore asked to apply out of turn for this funding measure. A total of around 1.5 million euros were available for funding the 34 projects. In each case, the development of a prototype to cope with the negative consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic was realized. The range of projects is very broad. The projects dealt, for example, with issues of supply, production support, culture, community life or target group-specific information. The common origin of the projects was the civil society engagement of their initiators. In addition to funding, the Prototype Fund’s “Corona” projects also benefited from professional project support from the Prototype Fund team. It supported the projects in project management, research and the dissemination of results. Experienced coaches, who advised and supported the implementation of the projects, supplemented the financial support of the competition participants by the BMBF and contributed to the sustainable establishment of the innovations.


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