The Climate Challenge Hackathon

The online hackathon "The Climate Challenge", organised by the Goethe-Institut together with Scientists4Future Heidelberg and The Hackathon Company, took place on the last weekend of October 2020.

Eine Weltkarte im Hintergrund, davor 4 Menschen, die miteinander reden und gestikulieren © Lena Ziyal Are you tired of just talking about the climate change? Do you want to take action instead? That was the call for the online hackathon "The Climate Challenge" organised by the Goethe-Institut together with Scientists4Future Heidelberg and The Hackathon Company from 30 October to 1 November 2020.

For one weekend, around 250 developers, designers, creatives, scientists, problem solvers and digital entrepreneurs from 24 European countries worked together in 30 teams across different online platforms to develop innovative solutions in four thematic areas to help EU citizens - and everyone else - tackle the climate challenge. They were supported and accompanied by 28 scientific experts.

These thematic areas were specified:

Raising awareness
How can we achieve behavioral changes that support climate protection? (e.g. by nudging)
How can we make traveling more eco-friendly?

How can we communicate climate change to the public in a way that encourages people to take concrete environmental actions?
How can we counteract fake news around climate change effectively?

Social perspective
How can we adapt measures that were developed in the context of the Corona crisis to achieve sustainable climate protection?
How can we emphasize the benefits of a reduced digital CO₂e footprint?

Big Data
Which possibilities does big data offer to evaluate climate mitigation measures?
How can we enable local authorities to access climate data and to develop solutions that help them overcome risk factors associated with their geographical conditions?

If you are interested in how the hackathon went, you can read about it in the agenda.

Need more information?

Background information on the hackathon can be found in the article Digital Climate Protection by journalist Annette Walter. 

The four projects selected by the jury on 1 November are:

CeCeCe uses natural language processing tools to analyse the "tone" and sentence structure of statements on climate and suggests alternative wording where appropriate. The aim is to objectify the discourse on climate change.

Face Responsibility
Face Responsibility creates analyses on the responsibilities of acting persons and makes this data available in a compact form via social media so that the decision-makers in question can be addressed in a more targeted manner.

Is This an Expert
Is This an Expert is a bot on Twitter that checks whether tweets on climate change come from experts and how valid the information they contain is.

Pledge4Future is a web tool for monitoring and reducing work-related emissions. With a playful approach, universities and companies are to be encouraged to keep a better eye on their environmentally impacting behaviour and to change it if necessary.

The four winning teams continuesly work on their projects - supported and accompanied by Scientists4Future Heidelberg and the Goethe-Institut.

In June 2021, the project teams can apply for further funding.

Do you have any questions? We will be happy to help! Get in touch:

Brigitte Döllgast and Sabine Reddel
Headquarter of the Goethe-Institut in Munich

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Learn more about our partner here:
Scientists for Future Heidelberg