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We’re supporting the COVID-19 #SmartDevelopmentHack

Smart Development Hack is a collaboration of the European Commission and the BMZ (german Federal Ministry of Economic Cooperation), and is a development of the hugely successful WirVsVirus hackathon. Vodafone are at the heart of supporting of supporting innovative technology concepts designed to help battle COVID-19.

The coronavirus brings with it severe implications for economies, small businesses and response capacities worldwide. In emerging markets which are yet to experience the full force of the virus, and in partner countries of the European Commission with already vulnerable economies this is a tremendous cause for concern.

In Germany, the Vodafone Institute provided support for the WirVsVirus hackathon. The event attracted more than 42,000 participants over its three-day duration.

Vodafone is a European Commission partner in Africa, and we are now proud to announce Vodafone and Vodacom’s support of ‘Smart Development Hack’.

This initiative, developed from the WirVsVirus hackathon, is led jointly by the European Commission and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). It seeks to marry together European tech companies, international development agencies and individuals with ideas that will help to mitigate the life-threatening impact of the coronavirus, in and beyond Europe.

The Commission and BMZ have called for ideas that fall into the five pillars of their digital strategy:

  1. work and economy
  2. local innovation
  3. equality of opportunity
  4. good governance and human rights; and
  5. development data

Those with the best digital ventures will be entered into a two-day intensive hackathon, collaborating with implementation experts, and that’s where Vodafone comes in. Our teams will be offering expert advice during the hackathon, and we’ve already involved some of the most innovative teams and people across our business to support hackathon entrants.

Smart Development Hack 01

The best teams can expect to potentially receive significant financial support and help with scaling their projects for immediate implementation.

Paresh Modi, Head of Business Development and Innovation, Vodafone Group, said, “The WirVsVirus hackathon has identified some tangible new ventures that can help Europeans through this crisis period. Following on from the original hackathon, It is great to see that initiative expand and that Vodafone can use our knowledge of both innovation and emerging markets to support that process and identify more ideas that can make a positive social difference across the globe.”

To learn more about how we're helping families, communities and businesses to stay connected during the COVID-19 pandemic, please visit

  • COVID-19
  • Digital Society
  • EU
  • Technology

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