Call for Challenges

Working in the sectors of social development and humanitarian action is an incredibly powerful and direct way to make a global impact. 

But there are unprecedented challenges for humanitarian actors and social innovators today. We have to deal with a long pandemic period and its consequences. Many faced loss of income or social safety nets falling apart. Giving assistance and protection is extremely difficult at this moment. On top we are asked to solve them with a new systemic approach.

What the world needs to solve them is the right combination of skills, values, knowledge and people, and to foster the impact in the world on a large scale.

We, as THE Port Association, are aiming to pool the best science and technology related humanitarian innovators to create a tangible solution and bring this global impact a step closer.

We Can Help You

What is the brilliant idea you were mulling over for a long time, but for which you lacked the knowledge, the skills or infrastructure to bring it to reality?

What is the main problem your association is struggling with and for which you need hand-picked brains to work?

We help you to shape your challenge and hand-select a specialised team to work on it in a live event that we organise each year in October. Our volunteers share their brainpower and enthusiasm to tackle meaningful humanitarian projects in a unique atmosphere hosted by CERN IdeaSquare.

Four Steps

Finding a suitable innovative solution for your humanitarian challenges can be accomplished by following our basic 4-step methodology outlined below.

1. Challenge Definition

Together with you we shape your idea, problem or goal into an appealing and well-defined challenge for one of our teams to work on. Gaining factual information, comparing expectations to reality, looking for root causes of problems and even looking for potential partners are all part of that process. We will write the narrative of your challenge by refining goals, required results and project description details.

2. Resources Assignment

We put together a well-balanced and diverse team to work on your challenge. We will identify the knowledge, skills and creativity that are needed to tackle it. Highly motivated hand-picked participants are formed in a multidisciplinary team. The team will be completed with experts, coaches and mentors.

3. Challenge Discovery

In a 6 weeks preparatory phase of collaborative remote sessions the team will discover your challenge and the world it lives in. The goal of challenge discovery is to independently research the current state, explore directions for solutions and define requirements. Equally important is the process of forming a team in which each member is stimulated to give the best of her or his ability.

4. Co-Creation and Prototyping

During the live event of the Humanitarian Hackathon all teams will have 3 days of intensive hacking, ideating, engineering and building. Finally they will come up with a tangible prototype with potential to develop into a real product to solve your problem. 

After the event, we foster the projects that emerge from the challenges and stimulate the networking both within our community of change-makers and between them and our partners.

Timeline for Challenges' Submission

The dates for the 2022 edition are still being finalised, but you can submit your challenge at any time. To give you an idea of the schedule, the following is the timeline for the 2021 hackathon:

Timeline for defining a challenge.

Now It's Your Turn!

Let us know what your idea, goal or problem is. All you need to do is click this button and tell us what it’s all about. No need to dive into full detail. We will contact you to set up a meeting about it either virtually or in person.

Submit your challenge

Do You Need Help?

If you’re not sure what to write down in the form or maybe you prefer to tell us instead of writing it down. Just contact us and we will work together to set up your proposal at its best.