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Ideas marathon to make Ireland a better place to live and work kicks off

Ideas marathon to make Ireland a better place to live and work kicks off
‘ShareDrive’, winners of the 2019 Emerging Leaders Hackathon, hosted at DCU last year by American Chamber of Commerce. Picture: Chris Bellew/Fennells

More than 120 participants from across 100 companies descended on DCU Saint Patrick’s Campus for the fourth annual American Chamber Emerging Leaders Hackathon 2020 which ran from Thursday to Saturday, February 6 to 8 — in what has been described as a weekend of ideas and the ultimate networking event.

At Thursday night’s opening, the stage was set as participants created pitches for this year’s challenge to create an innovation to make Ireland the best place to live and work.

Since its inception four years ago, teams have developed ideas on projects such as climate action, housing and data security.

Speaking about the event, director of programmes at the American Chamber, Miriam O’Keeffe, said: “The hackers will be working down to the wire over 48 hours to ideate, innovate and to pitch the winning innovation on Saturday evening. Participants have 48 hours to come up with a minimal viable product (MVP) and they will need grit and stamina to get through what is essentially an ideas marathon.”

The teams are being guided throughout by a group of mentors from business, state agencies and the public sector, all of whom will be on hand to answer questions, share their networks, experience and knowledge.

The event is held in association with the DCU Ryan Academy and sponsored by Alexion, Accenture, Altech, Citrix, Coca- Cola Company, Emergenetics, Facbook, Microsoft, United Airlines and VHI.

The programme concluded on Saturday when teams had just five minutes to pitch their idea to an expert group of panelists.

The Emerging Leader’s hackathon is part of a more comprehensive programme offered by the Chamber for emerging talent within its member companies.

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