’’In the past decade we've come to realize that technology is truly moving into the public arena’’

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We are proud to have such a strong and respected panel of jurors that will decide which teams deserve to win next week. Juror Taco Ekkel, Partner at Q42, Creative technologist and hands-on geek, shares his story in the run-up to the #Hackathonforgood.

What is your expertise as one of the jurors and what will be your key points of attention during the Hackathon?
’’My background is in digital product development and my expertise is to support execution of big ideas with a focus on technology, problem/solution fit, and team. 

At the Hackathon for Good my lens will be the same I use for most new ventures: does the world need this specific solution to this specific problem? is it built on a concrete, actionable vision that has legs? does it use technology to its maximum potential, but also in a realistic, pragmatic way?’’

Why is it so important that we try to solve social problems specifically with technology?
’’Until a few years ago, the tech revolution unfolded mostly in the private space. We invented ideas and structures to quickly realize technology-based improvements to our lives. And hackathons happened primarily to benefit private companies' goals. 

In the past decade we've come to realize that technology is truly moving into the public arena—the space of safety, security, education, care, and other common structures. It's time for hackathons in the public space to become the place where the forefront of innovation happens. The fact that this hackathon focuses on public social issues in combination with (big) data & tech makes it especially relevant to our future.’’

What is your view on the challenges that the hackers will face during The Hackathon for Good?
’’The challenges vary in degree of specificity— to me the more open ended ones are most interesting as they allow for unexpected outcomes. I am specifically interested in NCI's challenge as I think it's one of the most pressing issues technology is confronting us with globally. Besides that I like the concreteness of Asser Institute's challenge, and hope that we'll end up with an approach we can actually bring to life on the short/medium term.’’

Where are you most excited about?
‘‘I am very much looking forward to a big turnout of talented teams that come up with ambitious, concrete and powerful ideas to solve some of the real issues of our time.’’

 

Emiel Lijbrink