CODE19: A 72-hour hackathon to find solutions to COVID-19 challenges

COVID-19 requires a new set of ideas and mitigation strategies: Organisers

HEALTH-CORONAVIRUS/GERMANY [File] The hackathon is being organised by the Motwani Jadeja Foundation and HackerEarth | Reuters

Starting Friday evening, a 72-hour online hackathon event called 'CODE19' is being organised to find solutions to India’s challenges against the menace of COVID-19. The event is aimed at encouraging participants to collaborate with mentors, subject matter specialists, data sources and a network of collaborators to find solutions against the coronavirus pandemic. The online hackathon also aims to create open-source projects that may help solve the problems of the current COVID-19 crisis in India.

Interestingly, through this hackathon, individuals will be able to participate from their homes and can  carry a prize money worth $10,000. It is being organised by the Motwani Jadeja Foundation and HackerEarth that provides enterprise software solutions to different organisations. The hackathon is expected to result in open source prototypes that can be developed quickly and applied in day-to-day life. 

“Less than 3.5 per cent of India's GDP is spent on healthcare. All new crises such as COVID-19 requires a new set of ideas and mitigation strategies. Hence we are aiming at a collective responsibility to put our brains together to come up with new ideas and solutions to fight the virus. This hackathon can be a perfect platform to bring expert minds together. The hackathon will result in working on solutions through brainstorming, ideation, wireframes, designs, developments and prototype testing,” explained Asha Jadeja Motwani, the Founder of Motwani Jadeja Foundation. 

The CODE 19 hackathon will have multiple themes. There would be themes such as medical treatment and testing wherein participants will come up with technical solutions for reducing the severity of symptoms of COVID-19. This would also focus on testing and delivery of essential services and also to build IoT (Internet of Things)-enabled digital assistants for surgeons, patients, and the likes throughout a patient's journey. For instance, this will involve building dashboard and reporting tools for patient data monitoring or data backend decision-maker for surgeons with features like care plans, healing time estimation, patient feedback, or customised counseling for patients. 

Besides this, there would be themes such as travel and tourism that would try to analyse the impact of COVID-19 lockdown on the tourism and the travel industry. This theme will aim to build a predictive analytics model or a product to help the aviation industry or customers on ways to handle the COVID-19 crisis. This will also aim at building a travel dashboard that gives feedback or updates about travel safety, on-boarding the safest route, nearest hospitals, prompt measures to be followed in emergency cases or other infographics.

Additionally, there would be themes focused around mitigation of the virus and building solutions to enable isolation and social distancing and use technology to enable effective supply chain management of protective equipment like masks, sanitizers, etc to the general population as well as to the medical community. There would also be themes around welfare and awareness, R&D, education and awareness etc. 

There would also be a theme focused around  open innovation for COVID-19 that would propose technologies, innovative solutions, bioinformatics, datasets, apps for diagnosis that can be leveraged for strengthening the fight against the disease. This would involve building a platform for connecting vulnerable, at-risk people with volunteers via a call center and task dispatch app to prevent further isolation and loneliness. 

In order to participate, one will need to sign up on There is no age criteria for a participant. This hackathon is open for participants from across the world and the number of participants per team is unlimited. The participants will need to upload a video of their pitch and demo (of maximum 2 minutes). 

The organisers are expecting that the project is well-documented and each one should be able to test the project and be able to develop it or build on it. There will be open voting at the end along with a jury to assess the most interesting projects. The event will also have a few online sessions, including talks with business leaders to keep the participants inspired. The winners would be announced at 9 pm on April 14. The organisers are expecting around 3,000 participants in the hackathon.