Sat Mar 03, 2018
The Urb-Hackathon Organized for the First Time in Lebanon after France & Korea

Under the patronage of the President of the Council of Ministers His Excellency Mr. Saad Hariri, the first Urb-Hackathon in Lebanon and the Middle East was organized on March 1st, 2nd and 3rd, 2018 addressing the special theme: “Data-urbanism: Reducing City Air Pollution from Transport”.

The Urb-Hackathon is organized in Lebanon by e-EcoSolutions and IPT Energy Center (IPTEC) in collaboration with Universcience – La Cité des Sciences et de l’Industrie (the organizer of the Urb-Hackathon in France), and with the strategic support of Berytech, the Ministry of Environment in Lebanon, the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) in Lebanon, the Order of Engineers and Architects of Beirut, the Global Compact Network Lebanon (GCNL), Saint Joseph University of Beirut (USJ) and the French Institute in Lebanon.

Following the big launch of the Urb-Hackathon through the press conference held at the French Institute in Lebanon on January 23rd 2018, more than 140 registrations from professionals and students from different fields and backgrounds were remarkably received. However, the Urb-Hackathon selection committee had to select 37 final participants to form teams and work on finding solutions to reduce the impact of air pollution caused by transport in the city, in a limited time frame and in the most technological, advanced and innovative ways.

The 37 participants set to work like bees in a beehive on Three Full Days on March 1st, 2nd and 3rd  at the Berytech Innovation Park in Mar Roukoz, to invent, design and produce their prototyped solutions, after being familiarized with the latest data and studies about air pollution in Lebanon. The three days were led by the French Experts team from Universcience, and included workshops, presentations and empowerment sessions. Additionally, the participants were offered a free access to the Berytech Fab Lab - the first certified digital fabrication laboratory in Lebanon, offering a vast array of resources and machines to fabricate their prototypes and innovative products.

The 3rd Day of the Urb-Hackathon concluded with the Award Distribution Ceremony at the USJ Science and Technology Campus in Mar Roukoz in the presence of Minister Raya Hasan representing Prime Minister Mr. Saad Hariri, during which key notes were addressed by Mr. Gilbert Tegho CEO of e-EcoSolutions, Dr. Toni Issa President of IPT Energy Center (IPTEC), Mrs. Patricia Pizzorno Sardena Project Manager of the Experimental Laboratory and Workshops at Universcience, Mr. Ramy Boujawdeh Deputy General Manager at Berytech, Mrs. Celine Moyroud Country Director at UNDP. The participants’ teams submitted their projects to an international jury panels constituted of 8 members, the latter selected three winning groups as follows:

Beirut Rah Tondaf-Detox Beirut, 1st position
Hackollution, 2nd position
Breathe, 3rd position
SmartT, Univercience Prize

The prizes included the Recognition Prize by Universcience, certificate of participation to all participants, Entrepreneurship Prizes by Berytech, Support in Lobbying with the concerned ministries by IPT Energy Center (IPTEC), to work on turning eligible projects into real applicable solutions in Lebanon and Eco-Friendly “Quantum” Fuel Gift Cards from IPT to all the members of the winning team. 

Mr. Gilbert Tegho, e-EcoSolutions CEO
“We were very happy to bring this international experience to Lebanon and to build all the right partnerships to make it happen successfully. We were even happier to witness the great results presented by the smart Lebanese minds that succeeded to capture this opportunity and to transform their ideas into achievable solutions.”

Dr. Toni Issa, IPTEC President

“The Hackathon enables the participating students and entrepreneurs to acquire professional and technical expertise as well as guidance from international specialized experts. It also provides them with the opportunity to connect with governmental and international entities that have the resources to put their ideas and projects into effect. We look forward to obtaining their smart solutions for a problem that can no longer be ignored, namely: air pollution in Lebanese cities. This project falls in line with the ongoing efforts of IPT Energy Center (IPTEC) which began in 2012 when we launched a national campaign on the subject. In conclusion, we hope that the Urb-Hackathon will constitute an opportunity or a glimmer of hope for the ambitious and creative Lebanese youth whom we hope will become involved in solving the growing environmental problems.”

Finally ,the Urb-Hackathon Organizers highly thanked the key supporters for their important engagement and contributions to the event success, and showed a high gratitude for the event sponsors Bank Audi, Raidy Printing, Bioland, and M Social Catering, and for their official media partner LBCI.

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