The Largest Hackathon in the Middle East Will Be Hosted by Saudi Arabia |

The Largest Hackathon in the Middle East Will Be Hosted by Saudi Arabia

The hackathon aims to help improve the Hajj experience of pilgrims to the Kingdom

Posted on

29 July 2018

Last updated on 29 July 2018
The Largest Hackathon in the Middle East Will Be Hosted by Saudi Arabia

Saudi Arabia will host the largest hackathon in the Middle East this August.

A 36-hour hackathon will be held at the International Exhibition and Convention Centre in Jeddah from August 1st to 3rd, 2018.

Around 3000 developers are expected to participate in the event which is aimed to streamline Hajj and improve pilgrim’s experience.
On the official Hajj Hackathon website, they state: “Every year over 2 million people from across the globe journey to Saudi to perform The Hajj. How can you leverage technology and innovation to streamline the process and improve the overall experience for pilgrims?”

SEE ALSO: Saudi Arabia's Women Are Its Untapped Economic Resource

The hackathon is open to both male and female tech entrepreneurs, innovators, developers and designers from all over the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and participants stand a chance to win amazing prizes.

A total pool of over 2 million SAR worth of prizes is up for grabs with first place walking away with 1,000,000 SAR for 15% equity investment. The runner-up will receive 500,000 SAR for 10% equity investment, and the 2nd runner-up will get 350,000 SAR for 7% equity investment.
Participants in the Hajj Hackathon will have to find and build solutions that help streamline the process of Hajj and improve the overall experience of pilgrims.

What areas will the hackathon focus on and what criteria is used to judge the solutions?

As we mentioned above, the idea of the Hajj Hackathon is to improve the whole Hajj experience for pilgrims, as well as to streamline everything possible.

The focus areas for the Hajj Hackathon are:

  • Food & Beverage
  • Transportation
  • Crowd control & traffic management
  • Travel & accommodations arrangement
  • Public health
  • Waste management
  • Housing
  • Communications solutions
  • Financial solutions

All participants will be given a score out of 20 based on 5 criteria areas:

  • Design: Was the UX/UI intuitive and appealing?
  • Simplicity: Is the application simple to use and can the team explain it clearly in three sentences or less?
  • Creativity: How creative was the team in developing an innovative solution for the challenge?
  • Impact: Did the team create an application that can have a real and valuable impact?

SEE ALSO: Guidebook for expatriates recruited for work in the Kingdom of Saudi

What is a hackathon?

A hackathon is a gathering of people with different technical skills and backgrounds to find solutions for a specific challenge. At the end of the hackathon usable software needs to be produced as a solution to the problem.

Usually, multiple teams with diverse backgrounds compete against each other to provide organisers with a range of high-quality solutions.