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Kampala INSPIRE Hackathon 2020 Updates

A Hackathon and Ideathon for Sustainable Africa


The IST-Africa 2020 conference, supported by the European Commission (EC) and the African Union Commission (AUC), addresses a series of societal challenges.

The Kampala INSPIRE Hackathon 2020 is a contribution to the joint efforts to solve these challenges. The hackathon addresses some of the key topics identified by the IST-Africa conference, such as agriculture, environmental sustainability, collaborative open innovation and ICT-enabled entrepreneurship.

The Kampala INSPIRE Hackathon 2020 is one of the satellite INSPIRE hackathons. The hackathon is organised in the frame of the IST Africa 2020 Conference. The hackathon is a collaborative event organised by Plan4all, Club of Ossiach associations, GODAN, FAO, IST-Africa Conference, Makerere University, AfriGEO, RCMRD and EU projects including EO4Agri, STARGATE, RDA Europe 4.0, SIEUSOIL, DEMETER, SmartAgriHubs, NextGEOSS, EUXDAT, PoliVisu and AFarCloud.



The goal of the Kampala INSPIRE Hackathon 2020 is to continue to build and strengthen relationships between several EU projects and African communities that started in 2019 with the Nairobi INSPIRE hackathon. This was one of our most successful hackathons with more than 200 participants representing 26 African countries. The INSPIRE hackathons are not a competition, rather the main focus is building relationships, making rapid developments, and collecting ideas for future research and innovation.



The hackathon starts on March 2020 by creating hackathon teams addressing pre-defined challenges. The hackathon will run as a fully virtual event and the final phase is on 6th May 2020 between 12 PM and 15 PM CEST where the hackathon results will be presented remotely.



The hackathon consists of the following phases and components:

  • a virtual period: The teams will work virtually led by the team mentors. Membership and participation in this part is open to all.  There will be educational webinars during the virtual hackathon to facilitate the progress/collaboration.
  • a series of webinars covering topics relevant to the challenges, information about the challenges and the INSPIRE hackathon itself
  • final virtual presentations of results 



The Kampala INSPIRE Hackathon 2020 is organised using an unconventional approach, tailored to cater for cross-continental collaboration.

The hackathon starts with a set of predefined challenges. Each project has a mentor (see the list of projects and mentors below). The participants of the hackathon can choose to work on any of the predefined projects. In this way, teams will be built to collaborate on the projects.

The mentors will organise the work and are responsible for the communication in the project teams and will act as team leaders.

The projects and their mentors for the Kampala INSPIRE Hackathon 2020 include:

1. Transportation related aspects of Urban Planning - use case of Kampala (mentors: Stephen Kalyesubula, Tuula Löytty, Daniel Beran and Karel Jedlička)

2. SmartAfriHub – Agriculture Digital Innovation Hub for Africa (mentors: Jiří Kvapil, Emmanuel Okalany, Maureen Agena, David Martin Amitu, Francis Otto and Jacob Kato from Regional Universities Forum for Capacity Building in Agriculture (RUFORUM) based at Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda, Petr Uhlir, Tuula Löytty, Dimitrij Kozuch, Filip Leitner, Jan Vrobel)

3. Open Land Use for Africa (OLU4Africa) (mentor: Dmitrij Kozuch)

4. Desert Locust (mentors: Paul Kasoma, Kizito Odhiambo, Lilian Ndungu)

5. IoT Technologies for Africa (mentors: Michal Kepka and Joel Muhanguzi)

6. Climate Change Trends for Africa (mentors:  Pavel Hájek, Jiří Valeš, Karel Jedlička, Samuel Ekwacu)

7. EO4Agri Challenge (mentors: Karel Charvát, Jiri Kvapil, Dmitrij Kozuch, Hana Kubickova, Jan Chytry, Lilian Ndungu)

8. Text Mining and Metadata (mentors: Karel Charvat, Michal Kepka, Karel Panek, Marek Splichal and  Stepan Kafka)

9. Ethical and legal aspects of open data affecting farmers (mentors: Foteini Zampati, Alice Namuli, Chris Addison)



An important component of the INSPIRE hackathon concept is the capacity building activities. It is provided in webinars organized by each of the challenges. In addition to a short introduction to the INSPIRE hackathon concept and the specific challenge, experts are invited to speak about topics covered within the challenge. This way transfer of knowledge (often across disciplines) go side by side with efficient management of the challenge work. The webinars will be announced within a couple of weeks after the hackathon is kicked-off. 


  • March 2020 - start of the hackathon, registration opens
  • 1st April - 9th April - a series of webinars introducing the teams and their progress. There are educational elements in these webinars.
  • 6 May 2020 - remote presentation of the hackathon results 



In order to participate in the hackathon, please REGISTER HERE 

You can join the teams mentioned above at any time between now and May 2020. The registration is open to anyone from anywhere in the world as the hackathon is done virtually. 



Participating in the Kampala INSPIRE hackathon is free of charge. 


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