UN, EU launch 2nd OSS4SDG Hackathon on Sustainable Cities & Communities—Register Today!

The Office of Information and Communications Technology (OICT), the European Commission Directorate-General for Informatics (EC DG--DIGIT) and OpenStreetMap (OSM) have launched the second series of innovation challenges in the framework of the Open Source Software for Sustainable Development Goals (OSS4SDG) initiative. The seven challenges—hosted on the United Nations crowdsourcing platform, Unite Ideas—relate to SDG #11: “Sustainable Cities & Communities.“

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In recent decades, the world has experienced the largest wave of urban growth in history. Hundreds of millions of people now live in crowded cities with limited access to water, electricity and healthcare services.

Emerging information and communication technologies (ICT), such as open source, big data, the Internet of Things (IoT) and real-time systems, are increasingly being used to develop solutions to global urbanization issues. These technologies are playing a key role in making cities more resilient, sustainable and smarter.

United Nations and the European Union teams work with these technologies to help cities and communities reach sustainability. Located around the world, the teams develop solutions that, for instance, create links between nature and human wellbeing to better plan investments in nature and maximize benefits for people and communities.

About the OSS4SDG challenges

Through the competition, which will take place 1-31 October, participants will collaborate with OSM mentors to establish concrete open source software solutions that can then be re-used through open source licensing terms and conditions.

"The great thing about hackathons is that they allow us to connect with open source communities," said Thomas Gageik, Director of Digital Business Solutions at DIGIT. "The enthusiasm of the community is very motivating, and by doing this together with OICT, we reinforce the working-together spirit between the two institutions".

The following entities developed the challenges:

  • Eurostat
  • Open-GIS
  • United Nations Global Service Centre (UNGSC)- United Nations Mappers
  • Directorate-General for Communications Networks, Content and Technology (DG CONNECT)
  • OpenStreetMap (OSM)

A jury of experts from the European Commission, OICT and OSM will determine the winners based on predetermined selection criteria such as creativity, innovation, relevance, applicability and user experience. Winners will be announced in November.

To learn more about the initiative and individual challenges, and to register for the second Open Source Software for Sustainable Development Goals challenges on SDG 11, visit: https://ideas.unite.un.org/sdg11/Page/Overview.


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For more information, email Omar Mohsine at mohsine@un.org