Unlimited: Azerbaijan's 1st Inclusivity Hackathon

The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Country Office in Azerbaijan is launching the first ever Inclusivity Hackathon in Azerbaijan on 28 – 30 June 2019. Bringing close to a hundred people together in the capital Baku, the Hackathon will draw innovative solutions to support people with varying abilities.

At present over 15% of the world’s population are living with a disability. In Azerbaijan, the number of people with disabilities (PwD) is reported at 620,000 or about 6% of the population. They constitute about 30% of 1.3 million pensioners with 60% of recipients of disability benefits being minors. Every day PwDs face difficulties and encounter barriers, which oftentimes remain invisible for the broader public: inaccessible infrastructure, stigma, lack of relevant assistive technology, nonexistent services and policies in almost all areas of life. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the most common challenges facing people living with disabilities include attitudinal, physical limitations, social factors, lack of accessible infrastructure, including communications and transport systems as well as the lack sufficient legislative and policy support. Often, people with disabilities encounter more than one barrier at a time.

To tackle these barriers in a non-traditional way, UNDP Azerbaijan is organizing a two-day Inclusivity Hackathon under “Unlimited” concept.

The main purpose of the 48-hours non-stop event is to bring together motivated representatives of the civil society, people with disabilities (PwD), and young civic and technology enthusiasts where they get exposed to challenges of PwD experience in Azerbaijan, come up with ideas and open source code solutions to tackle these challenges (e.g. apps, websites, e-products) as well as “acquire the fire” from a group of mentors to further their ideas into a workable prototypes to improve lives of PwDs.

The programme is now open for applications from civic activists and volunteers, students, web designers, web programmers, people with disabilities, journalists, government officials interested in joining the hackathon! Registered applicants will work in a fast-paced team environment and within only 48 hours will generate a certain number of workable prototypes that can facilitate a greater level of awareness of the challenges and needs of people with disabilities as well as help solve these challenges for them.

The winning idea will receive a grant award of 5,000 Azerbaijani manat and access to professional mentorship guidance for the period of three months following the award. During this time to operationalise the prototype and develop full scale working solution.

The Hackathon will be held at the Museum of Art (Bayil district, National Flag Square, 1000 Baku, Azerbaijan). Experienced mentors will support the participating teams and assist them in developing best possible solutions. By the end of the three-day intensive programme, filled with exciting learning modules and adrenaline-driven experience, the Jury members selected from among high profile national and international experts in the field of innovation, inclusivity and technology will review individual team profiles and will give their final verdict on the winning idea.

If you and your team want to partake in a positive social change, create digital solutions to improve the wellbeing of PwDs in Azerbaijan and make this world a better place to live Leaving No One Behind please join the UNDP’s inaugural Inclusivity Hackathon!

For more insights, please visit the UNDP’s Unlimited page here: http://www.unlimited.az/
Interested individuals who wish to join the Hackathon to co-design new innovative technologies and both low-tech and high-tech disability-friendly solutions should submit your application via this form: https://unlimitedhackaton.typeform.com/to/xrc4TZ

Applications close on 23 June 2019, at 23:59 (Baku Time).