Updated on April 6, 2016
A hackathon is typically an event bringing together computer programmers, graphic designers, software developers, and other persons with technical skills to collaborate intensively on projects. The events usually last 1-2 days, and participants usually work in teams and compete to develop the best solutions to a pre-defined challenge.
More recently, international development organizations have been using hackathons as opportunities for intensive brainstorming, without necessarily featuring coding or software development.
Our hackathon is primarily focused on bringing agriculture organizations and actors from the region together to hack a common farming challenge, so the solutions need not be strictly technology-based. However, we believe the local technology community has an extremely important role to play in developing regional agriculture, and we hope the involvement of local coders and technical persons will help these agriculture organizations to develop better and more efficient solutions to their challenges.
Both local software programmers, developers, and other persons with computer and data management expertise, and local agriculture actors are crucial to creating a successful hackathon team. If you are in either of these groups and share a passion for helping develop local agriculture, we'd love to hear from you!
There is no fee to participate, but prospective hackers must contact the organizers in advance to be assigned to a team. In addition, the participant must cover their own travel expenses to the venue. Food and beverages at the event are typically provided.
Prizes or awards offered vary by hackathon and the event partners. In the past, awards have included a consultancy contract to further develop the project idea. Of course, there are many non-monetary benefits to participating in a hackathon as well, such as the networking opportunity and the ability to participate in the creation of impactful solutions across the agriculture value chain.
The specific challenge varies by event and will be announced prior to or at the start of the hackathon. Past challenges have focused on agricultural data management and communication, for example.
Not necessarily. If you are interested in attending one of our upcoming hackathons and believe you have a skill to offer, contact us and let us know. While we sometimes give preference to persons with technical skills in assigning the hacking teams, if you feel you have particular expertise in agriculture, communications, or other fields that might be helpful on a team, get in contact with us!
We are continuously seeking new partners and new opportunities to use our hackathons to forge valuable connections and brainstorm solutions to agricultural challenges. If you are a member of a government agency, NGO, research institution or other agricultural entity and your organization would like to co-host a Hack4Farming event in your area, we'd love to hear from you!
Founded in 1999, aWhere collects and analyses over a billion points of data from around the globe each day to create unprecedented visibility and insight known as Agricultural Intelligence, critical decision making from farm level through to national policy. aWhere is based in Colorado, USA. For more information, visit our website here.
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