As many successful apps and computer programs, even start-ups and hubs, have been borne out of the dynamic hackathon environment in the past, under the theme ‘Gamification for Social Good’, programmers, designers, problem solvers and subject matter experts will meet for four days of competitive creation.
The 30 participants come from all throughout Africa – Botswana, Cameroon, Congo, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Madagascar, Mali, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, South Africa, Togo and Zimbabwe – hence truly shaping African diversity.
Teams taking part in the Gamify it! Hackathon! are made up of committed professionals looking to develop new ways of learning and sharing. With a particular emphasis on the African context, they will be required to create applications that involve gamification and serious games, as these are “particularly powerful ways to address individuals’ competences and change behaviour for the better,” says GIZ, who are organising the event on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development in cooperation with Ethiopian tech hub iceaddis and eLearning Africa.
First, the teams will need to identify key challenges and problems, and the suitable learning methods that will help their creation take shape. Organisers say they welcome ideas from a variety of areas, such as gamification and green technologies; gamification in education and (vocational) training; gamification for emergency and disaster management or agriculture; and immersive environments – virtual reality and augmented reality.
The hackathon will start at iceaddis and finish up at the eLearning Africa conference on May 20. Working on practical real-life solutions the participants will meet questions like the following: Is it possible to achieve a measurable impact towards sustainable development through fun and engagement? Do gamified learning interventions potentially offer a bigger impact than traditional blended learning scenarios or knowledge management systems? And which incentives beyond points, badges or leader boards could be applied in this specific context and what could they look like?
All teams will present their results to an international audience at the eLearning Africa conference, which is being co-organised by the African Union and hosted by the Government of Ethiopia. The award winning team will be invited to visit Berlin, Germany, for OEB in December 2015 – the global, cross-sector conference on technology supported learning and training.
Keep up-to-date on the progress and see what sustainability solutions are taking shape by following the hashtag #HGFSG (Hackathon Gamification for Social Good)