We are facing a severe economic crisis like no other as traditional methods for stimulating the economy don’t work under lockdown.

Steve Jurvetson

Co-founder of Future Ventures. Board Member of SpaceX and Tesla
We like to invest in moonshot thinking, big visions, dreams so audacious to be breathtaking when first proposed. I challenge you to do that.

Why economy?

We are facing a severe economic crisis like no other as traditional methods for stimulating the economy don’t work under lockdown. This is already having immediate economic consequences as we do not know how long this crisis will last and the impact is expected to last for a considerable time after that too.

Track organisers

Economy track of The Global Hack is organised by Latvian creative forces from startup, tech, corporate and creative communities, all powered by Swedbank. The same people who were behind HackForce, crisis response online hackathon in Latvia that took place between March 17 and19.

Challenges set by our partners

Challenge by Locate in Kent

Kent sectoral challenges

There will be significant impacts on those sectors reliant on discretionary consumer spending. This applies to the non-food retail sector, already facing major structural challenges, and to leisure and hospitality. Although relatively small in absolute employment numbers, Kent has a large and productive agricultural sector, reliant on a seasonal (and to a large extent migrant) workforce. While demand for food is resilient, social distancing measures and reduced migration could impose significant supply shocks on the industry.How can these sectors be protected? How will the future of these sectors look? What policy changes will help? Can there be a PPP model that is effective?

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Challenge by Locate in Kent

3 phases of the Kent Recovery Plan

Emergency: Kent is the Garden of England, its fruit and salads help to feed the country. Kent alone needs up 7,500 workers on the fields. How can this be achieved.\ Recovery: We don’t know when, but do know for certain that we will emerge from the coronavirus crisis. When we do, our local Recovery Plan must be ready to roll. As the most successful inward investment agency nationally, Locate in Kent has a major role to play – but what should it be?\ Sustainability: What is the new normal for Kent?

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by Swedbank

Swedbank challenge

Various businesses have put their operations on hold, more and more people are out of work, while there are businesses that now face skyrocketing demand for their goods and services and cannot keep up. Such industries as event, tourism, media, avio, catering have to fight extinction, while others thrive.

Think, for instance, about how to fix this structural imbalance, how to boost those businesses thriving and support those barely surviving. How to approach the rapidly increasing unemployment rate in both short and long term, how to mobilize the talented and bright minds now out of work. How to take advantage of the banking and fintech solutions out there to fight the crisis or what new solutions are needed now. What online tools or platforms can be part of the solution and what new framework of cooperation and partnerships would work best?

by Enterprise Estonia

Stay safe and enjoy Human Contact Free Tourism

Tourism companies, especially the smaller ones, in the present state of emergency situation, are suffering economic losses, because their direct source of income is the service consumers, both domestic and foreign tourists, who are not allowed to travel until unknown time. Tourism companies need immediately and quickly rethink their business model and use the existing situation to offer a different kind and innovative service, that usually is not their core business. Read more about the challenge here:

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by Estonian Social Insurance Board

Preventing a dramatic drop in youth employment rates after COVID-19

After the economic crisis of 2008, there was a dramatic rise in young people's (16-26 years old) unemployment rates. We should be better prepared to deal with possible similar consequences after COVID-19. We are looking for a proactive solution to manage possible risks rising from the economic repercussions of the virus. In addition, the solution could support the community by linking the unemployed youth and community problems/shortcomings.

by The European Commission

Economic impact & support to SMEs and startups

Actions and solutions to support local SMEs & startups, so they can stay afloat, adjust business models, continue their businesses, collaborate effectively, manage value chain disruptions, and facilitate the transition towards online.

by Estonian Social Insurance Board

Conflict Resolution during Times of Crises: Practicing Restorative Justice Online

Due to the spread of COVID-19 and the need to abstain from physical contact, we among many countries have been forced to shut down victim offender mediation and other restorative justice services.It is troubling to see rise as well as transformation of conflicts in communities, families and among juveniles while being unable to provide mediation services due to the isolation requirements. The solution we are looking for, should enable us to create a safe and functioning online environment that is easy to access, enables identification, does not require high-level IT skills and provides protection of personal data and online security.

Full Brief >

by The World Bank

Curving the Impact

COVID-19 has had a substantial impact on society in terms of health, emergency response, and economy. As the number of cases rises, the countries started to implement unprecedented measures such as lock-down their cities and stay-home order. Those policies surely save lives. However, the economic disturbance due to COIVD-19 and related policies might affect people’s lives just as much as any other financial crisis. The challenges are more hazardous in the countries where their economies are not formalized, guaranteed, and not publicly recognized/supported.

The most vulnerable to the economic challenges due to the COVID-19 are those who have been working in the informal sector or those with a disability, sickness, and old age. Hence, several national governments have already announced their social protection measures, such as cash transfer programs to mitigate the risk associated with COVID-19. Though the success of cash transfer is critical to saving vulnerable people from economic severity, the cash transfer program, especially in developing countries, have several challenges:

 No effective ways to transfer cash to those in need\  No accurate governmental data on the locations/names of those in need\  In many cases, they are not up to date

There is a significant risk of exclusion/inclusion error, due to the lack of accessible service and problems with transparency of policy implementation:

 No effective ways to communicate with those in need\  Those people tend to have no access to an information source such as internet

The situation requires solutions using technologies such as:

 Mobile payment solutions to obtain cash from local organizations such as bank\  Biometrics identifications to maximize the effectiveness of the cash transfer\  Integrating the several governmental databases to update the beneficiaries’ status\  Use of ML model to minimize the exclusion/inclusion error and establish objective decision-making process for recipients\  Big data analysis using data from the public such as national/local governments and private organization\  Use of drone or robots to promote cash transfer program to those who need it avoiding physical interaction of people

The World Bank team has been supporting the government in identifying the right and cost-efficient technologies that solve the delivery problems. However, the urgency of the issue requires more agile and creative solutions to address the challenges described above.

by Ministry of Rural Affairs, Estonia

Distant Socialising

While the virus is having a halting effect on our lives, it has none on the seasons. Spring has reached the Northern hemisphere marking the beginning of a busy season in agriculture – a period where hiring in large numbers is an absolute necessity.\ \ The share of immigrant labour among both skilled and seasonal workforce in this sector is a well-know secret in most parts of the world. Many workers left during the outbreak of the crises, but most were just getting ready to come. Except that now, borders are closed, and ironically, national food security now falls on the shoulders of locals – those who have never had any interest and lack skills to take on this line of work.\ \ At the same time, unemployment is on the rise in many other sectors, figures on payslips are diminishing and workers are forced to accept unpaid vacations for the unseen future. How to bridge these problems? How to get locals with reduced working hours to contribute to this season’s harvest and our local food supply?

by European Commission

European Solidarity Voucher to ensure liquidity of SMEs in the EU’s tourism sector

The European Solidarity Vouchers (voucher) Scheme incentives customers to buy services from suppliers in the tourism sector and consume the services after the crisis. Under the scheme customers would buy vouchers (for a small hotel or B&B, or restaurant) via existing aggregator platforms.\ \ An emphasis of the solidarity scheme is that all actors are coming together to support small businesses. The suggestion is that the online platforms (i.e.;, etc.) would be willing to waive some of their booking fees based on the motivation of demonstrate solidarity with small businesses. Second, the SMEs themselves would offer discounts (10-15%) to costumers to provide them with incentives to purchase the vouchers. Finally, the consumers would make a critical contribution to finance the SMEs and micro-businesses through the purchase of the solidarity vouchers, knowing that they won’t be able to use the vouchers for the next couple of weeks or even months.

Full Brief >

by City of Barcelona

Future of Barcelona

We're looking for all kinds of innovative solutions. Please see full Brief.

Full Brief >

We have the winners!

Top 3 teams

Top 3 teams

10 000€

More and more small businesses are forced to close their doors, unemployment is on the rise and could potentially reach 24 million people around the world, their only hope to survive is to sell online or by the phone. Sounds pretty simple right? Our SOM is 4.1 million SMBs in Mexico that don't have any kind of e-commerce

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Crisis Budget

New assistance packages are announced by governments throughout the world each day, it can be confusing and overwhelming to see what actually applies to you and what assistance you are eligible for. Our chatbot makes this understanding an easy and seamless process.

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We expect that this solution will reduce the friction in the SNAP application process. Studies show that the program reduces the probability of an recipient being food insecure by 30 percent (after controlling for factors endogenous with SNAP eligibility). Helping even one family get the food they need would make this work worthwhile, but we expect many more would benefit from this significantly easier process.

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Humans AI

Providing a reliable source on income to the worst-hit economical classes of India due to the lockdown. Small shop keepers, salesmen, taxi drivers and watchmen in India have no means of earning money during the lockdown. They also lack computers/laptops and cannot work from home. Unable to find means to pay for rent, bills and food along with little government support, a solution is needed, now.

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With over 3 million brick and mortar stores having to close, many were ready to sell online for lack of presence and also payment reliance on card presence to go cashless. Deliveries went through the roof, but with no trust in cash (or lack of availability with customers due to lockdowns), merchants have little options in majority of the world. Cash on delivery also poses risks of customer not present, cancelled orders (changed mind), or simply no change.

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We are here to support the restaurant industry communities, restructuring how we operate and also saving jobs. NosiFood platform aims to keep as many restaurants & cafes in business as possible. NosiFood is here to stay. We are not only built for the crisis, but here to change and elevate how restaurants & cafes operate their takeaway services online & in their communities.

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Samanya App

Governments around the globe are looking at a phased out removal of lockdown restrictions. To allow appointment based visits to groceries/pharmacies/utility stores, keeping in mind social distancing norm and to allow rush free, easy shopping of essentials, Samanya is the solution to connect suppliers (all size retailers & stockists) to the buyers- our major target market, to streamline outdoor visits for all citizens for the next 3-6 months.

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Small businesses are jeopardized by COVID-19 and help that the banks and government are providing is not enough, and citizens must act together in order to save jobs. In some countries, there is not any support and lend money in the bank with a high rate of interest it´s no and option to going up.

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Many small shops experience extremely high losses in sales because they can no longer sell their products . Whilst many products could be sold online a lot of the owners don't know how to do that or can't afford fees of existing marketplaces (e.g. Amazon). At the same time people who are looking for those products are stuck at home and want to support shops in their vicinity.

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We allow restaurants to have an immediate cashflow and a new digital offer for the future by leveraging the loyalty of the customers and by taking advantage from big brand and famous chefs. Give people the chance to bring a local dimension and that "sense of neighborhood" in online experiences

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We have plenty more fish.

  • richard eldridge

    Product management, Marketing, Sales, Executive, Investor

  • freshta a. farzam

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management, Public sector innovator

  • margus pala

    Tech - full stack software, Tech - software back-end, Business development

  • anu oks

    Business development, Product management, Onboarding investment

  • elina varendi


  • chris robbins

    Tech - mobile apps, Sales & Marketing, Business development, Design

  • kaspar hanni

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management

  • rick rasmussen

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Public sector innovator, Early stage finances

  • herkki valiste

    Business development

  • athanasios

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Public sector innovator, Data Scientist, Scientist

  • kai netthoefel

    Process setup and improvement

  • mart maasik

    Business development, Product management

  • john l. german

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management, Design, Public sector innovator, Decades of experience in international banking, and at UN HQ in New York

  • kaiser naseem

    International Development Banker

  • motlhabane

    Business development, Public sector innovator, Legal

  • rodrigo de alvarenga

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Strategy, testing & validating, MVP, Management, People

  • kristi tammet

    Business development, Product management

  • arzish azam

    Sales & Marketing

  • ruslan

    Sales & Marketing, Business development

  • andi belegu

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Public sector innovator, Scientist, Legal

  • andrew quinn

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management, Insolvency and corporate advisory.

  • eugene theodore

    Tech - mobile apps, Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management, Design, Data Scientist, Behavioural & Cognitivie Science / Behaviour Change / Storytelling

  • lisa la bonte

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Public sector innovator, economic dev / infrastructure

  • aleksandra pinar

    Business development, Product management, Design

  • stuart miller

    Tech - full stack software, Tech - software front end, Tech - software back-end, Business development

  • albion sutaj

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Public sector innovator

  • heiti mering

    Tech - full stack software, Tech - software front end, Tech hardware - mechanics, Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management, Public sector innovator, Process optimisation

  • jan-jaap verhoeve

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Investments

  • lawrence lau

    Business development, Design, Public sector innovator, Scientist, Legal, High performance computing, scientific visualisation

  • sébastien grèverie

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management, Design

  • alex baker

    Sales & Marketing, Business development

  • laura leon

    Tech - software front end, Product management, Design

  • aivar pehme

    Business development

  • randy swensen

    Business development, Product management, Business Cost Recovery

  • toni eliasz

    Business development, Public sector innovator, Digital business models and startup ecosystems in emerging markets

  • svetlana jefimova

    Business development

  • luigi dilauro

    Sales & Marketing

  • giuseppe spataro

    Business development, Product management

  • jan luts

    Tech - full stack software, Tech - software front end, Tech - software back-end, Business development, Product management, Design

  • mattia esposito

    Sales & Marketing, Business development

  • steffen maas

    Business development, Product management, Data Scientist

  • pooran chandra pandey

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management, Design, Conception of the program, management and leadership

  • luca borella

    Sales & Marketing, Business development

  • justine kurant

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management, Design

  • ivanina stoyanova

    Business development

  • reinis

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management

  • sidorela suli

    Tech - devops or cloud, Business development, Design

  • dr. muhammad ehsan khan

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management, Public sector innovator, Entrepreneurship

  • skannd tyagi

    Tech - mobile apps, Sales & Marketing, Business development, Design

  • elise bikova

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management

  • tengiz aghakishiyev

    Sales & Marketing, Business development, Product management, Public sector innovator, Legal

Track organisers