#DevPolHack

For the #DevPolHack experience to be successful, we want to make sure you are aware of all the responsibilities and roles that play a crucial element in your success.  Every #DevPolHack includes the following roles: 

  • Participant – anyone who registers and takes active part in the #DevPolHack experience 
  • Innovation Partner – anyone with a challenge to solve, who has in-depth undestanding of the challenge and the local context it appears 
  • Organizer – anyone who takes care of all the logistics of organizing the #DevPolHack, responsible for making sure the experience is smooth and enjoyable for everyone 

Important support roles: 

  • Mentor – usually chosen or suggested by the Challenge Hosts, mentor is anyone with experience and expertise in the challenge. The mentor will help the teams progress and develop their idea in a feasible way 
  • Jury Member – usually chosen by Organizer, prior to the #DevPolHack, jury member is anyone with experience and expertise in the challenge and/or the local context and can assess the ideas in order to choose the winning one 

To make the preparation as useful as possible, please choose the role that describes you the most and click on the links below.  

The preparation phase begin well in advance of the #DevPolHack and will require 2 to 3 sessions or meetings. 

Amazing that you decided to apply this innovative process for your challenge! Here you will find an overview of suggested roles and responsibilities that make #DevPolHack a success for you and your team. Ultimately, how you divide responsibilities amongst the people on your team is up to you. We just want to give you an overview of all that needs to be done! Every #DevPolHack may be organized a little bit differently. We cherish the diversity of experiences and working styles, so make sure to feedback and share with us how your experience has been. Here are some suggestions that will help you going: 

- We suggest at least 2 people to manage the basic responsibilities to successfully pull off a #DevPolHack 

Volunteers are brilliant! However, make sure that everyone has clearly defined responsibilities (with little or no overlap with anyone else) and understands deadlines and what success means! 

Great decision – this will surely be an unforgettable experience! As a participant in the #DevPolHack, you are responsible for embracing the attitude and responsibilities of a designer. What does that mean? 

  1. Trust the process – get comfortable with confusion and help other participants get comfortable with it 
  2. Be on time and respect the timing of the process – because time means freedom and creativity at its best. If you have few more things to discuss in your group but the facilitator says move on to the next step, take the next step 😊 
  3.  Use “Yes, and” more then “No, but..”  when listening to other participants 
  4. Ensure that people around you are taking time and space to express themselves, and it’s not only you talking 
  5. If online: please do your best to keep the camera on all throughout.

The DevPolHack process will expose you to a variety of tools that encourage you to think “outside-of-the-box" or even get rid of the box. In this toolbox, we cover the basics how to create safe spaces and possibility for designing solutions together with other people. These tools will be embedded in the different chapters, sometimes available as text, templates, games or videos. The most important part to remember is that the DevPolHack is not just several tools grouped together. It is the relationship and flow between these tools that matter. Whether we offer tools and techniques to support conversations or we guide you into prototyping, this process will make sure you experience working together. Unfortunately, most of the time just working together already has challenges. Communication, bias, inequity, power dynamics, accessibility and politics to name a few. So just like any other skill or activity you might want to succeed in, becoming an expert in DevPolHack and these tools is iterative and experience-driven.   

To dive right into the tools of #DevPolHack, use the search button: 

Person A: #DevPolHack Organizer & Partner Manager 

This person focuses on successfully delivering value for the participants. 

  • Selection of challenge to focus on 
  • Partnership management inside Helvetas and externally 
  • Invitation management 
  • Participants journey and communication 
  • Managing and delivering the curriculum (external facilitators can be involved) 
Person B: #DevPolHack Finance + Operations 

This person is more inward-focused, ensuring that the #DevPolHack runs from an operations and budgeting perspective.  

  • Travel and accommodation costs (if in-person event) 
  • Online tools & tech (if online event) 
  • External collaborators 
Person C: Event Logistics 

This person is focused on logistics and event-logistics so the event is pulled off without a hitch!  

  • Fix the date and time 
  • Figure out which video call platform to use 
  • Choose the white board option 
  • Organize breaks and fun elements with other supportive platforms (if needed) 
  • Create visual boards, slides and materials that will support the event  

Offline #DevPolHack 

  • Logistics 
  • Fix the date and time 
  • Identify and lock in location for the #DevPolHack (if online, choose the tool you will use) 
  • Organize food  
  • Organize all materials for the #DevPolHack 
Person D: Communicator 

This person is focused on communication of the #DevPolHack in Helvetar and externally, before, during and after the event. 

  • Communication to participants 
  • Social media posting 
  • Raising awareness about the chosen challenge 
  • Ensuring video and photo materials are captured at the event 
  • Post-event follow-up
If you are (interested in being) a #DevPolHack Organizer

Amazing that you decided to apply this innovative process for your challenge! Here you will find an overview of suggested roles and responsibilities that make #DevPolHack a success for you and your team. Ultimately, how you divide responsibilities amongst the people on your team is up to you. We just want to give you an overview of all that needs to be done! Every #DevPolHack may be organized a little bit differently. We cherish the diversity of experiences and working styles, so make sure to feedback and share with us how your experience has been. Here are some suggestions that will help you going: 

– We suggest at least 2 people to manage the basic responsibilities to successfully pull off a #DevPolHack 

Volunteers are brilliant! However, make sure that everyone has clearly defined responsibilities (with little or no overlap with anyone else) and understands deadlines and what success means!  

Roles & Responsibilities

Person A: #DevPolHack Organizer & Partner Manager 

This person focuses on successfully delivering value for the participants. 

  • Selection of challenge to focus on 
  • Partnership management inside Helvetas and externally 
  • Invitation management 
  • Participants journey and communication 
  • Managing and delivering the curriculum (external facilitators can be involved) 
Person B: #DevPolHack Finance + Operations 

This person is more inward-focused, ensuring that the #DevPolHack runs from an operations and budgeting perspective.  

  • Travel and accommodation costs (if in-person event) 
  • Online tools & tech (if online event) 
  • External collaborators 
Person C: Event Logistics 

This person is focused on logistics and event-logistics so the event is pulled off without a hitch!  

  • Fix the date and time 
  • Figure out which video call platform to use 
  • Choose the white board option 
  • Organize breaks and fun elements with other supportive platforms (if needed) 
  • Create visual boards, slides and materials that will support the event  

Offline #DevPolHack 

  • Logistics 
  • Fix the date and time 
  • Identify and lock in location for the #DevPolHack (if online, choose the tool you will use) 
  • Organize food  
  • Organize all materials for the #DevPolHack 
Person D: Communicator 

This person is focused on communication of the #DevPolHack in Helvetar and externally, before, during and after the event. 

  • Communication to participants 
  • Social media posting 
  • Raising awareness about the chosen challenge 
  • Ensuring video and photo materials are captured at the event 
  • Post-event follow-up

What do you need to do in the preparation phase?

As an organizer, you are first hunting for most relevant and interesting challenge that the #DevPolHack process can help tackle or solve. In step one, please publish a call for expression of interest to attract "Challengers” – projects or organisations who want to enter their specific challenge for a Hackathon. Communicate clearly that 

  • the Hackathon focuses on advocacy solutions, not on ‘technical’ aspects and solutions (e.g. service delivery, training provision); 
  • all submissions will be considered along a few criteria (explain them and provide each one example of a good and a bad proposal); 
  • the ‘client’ is expected to offer a decent prize to the hackathon winning team (give examples of a decent prize). 

Tip: Use social media to advertise your call and attrach more applications.Suggested channels: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Personalised invitations via Email etc. 

From the submissions received, select a challenge that meets the defined criteria for an advocacy hackathon:  

  • clearly defined advocacy challenge/problem (i.e. linked to regulatory, legal, institutional framework);  
  • interesting for sufficiently large number of participants (see team formation); 
  • demonstrated will and ability of the "Challenger” to implement possible solutions (e.g. as a project, established organisation, network); 
  • addressing one of Helvetas’ fields of expertise: private sector development, vocational education, governance, civil society strengthening. 

Tip: make sure each team member or facilitator is part of the selection. We suggest ranking proposals individually, based on a predefined template with the criteria from above, followed by an online meeting to discuss and make the final decision. When the decision is made, make sure to get back to all candidates to communicate and explain the decision. 

Now that you have your challenger selected, it is time to dive into the selected challenge. Invite the challenger to a preparatory session to concretize the challenge and get focus. If time allows, we suggest organizing two consecutive exercises: 

  • Do a “But Why”-exercise and  
  • formulate a ‘How might we’-question 

If you have to choose only one, we suggest going with the How-might-we question.

How to do a “But Why” exercise?

The "But why?" technique is one method used to identify underlying causes of a community issue. These underlying factors are called "root causes." The "But why?" technique examines a challenge by asking questions to find out what caused it. Each time an answer is given, a follow-up "But why?" is asked.  

Exact steps: Organize a session with the challenge host, ideally with their team. Ask them to write down the challenge they defined for this hackathon in the simplest possible way. Allow for the group to discuss and decide on the challenge definition (10 mins). Then start with a collective reflection on But Why? At each But Why the team is capturing and writing their answer. They have 10 mins per “but why” to find an answer. 

Link to the board: https://miro.com/app/board/uXjVM7sGeVo=/ 

Formulate a ‘How might we’-question (solution focused, not problem-focused)

How Might We (HMW) questions is a technique for the problem definition phase of design thinking. It is a technique that allows you to sift through all the stubborn and rigid issues discovered during the research of the Empathy step and helps to define solvable problems.

How to do it best?  

#1 Start with the Problems (or Insights) You’ve Uncovered  

The challenge host and team will be crucial for generating the HMW question. In a session, explain the HMW technique and share few examples of HMWs that are not specific.  

For example, let’s look at this question: How might we improve use digital advocacy to inspire more recycling in the Western Balkans? This question is not specific to what the team knows or has uncovered in their experience working on green policies in the Balkans. This question might sound good but the answers to it can result in ideas that don’t address the root problems and the insights the team has uncovered. If the problem is that citizens aren’t recycling because the infrastructure is messy and unorganized, a more suitable HMW question would be How might we increase awareness and encourage citizens to request better support in recycling from the municipality?    

#2 Avoid Suggesting a Solution in Your HMW Question  

It can be easy to limit your thinking and embed solutions in your HMW questions. But doing so restricts the pool of possibilities, and fewer ideas are generated. In the example below, the first HMW suggests a particular type of solution, whereas the second is agnostic about any particular solution.   

Example:  

Insight: Citizens are often unsure about where to recycle.  

HMW (poor): How might we tell citizens where to recycle?  

HMW (good): How might we make citizens feel confident they are able to recycle and find their best option?  

The problem with the first HMW question is that only solutions related to communication will be generated – and digital advocacy solutions are much much broader.   

#3 Focus Your HMWs on the Desired Outcome  

To avoid solving symptoms of the problems rather than the root problems themselves, ask yourself whether your HMW question focuses on the desired outcome. In the example below, the first HMW question loses sight of what we really want to achieve.   

Problem: Citizens have no time to recycle.  

HMW (poor): How might we decrease the stress in time management and help citizens recycle?  

HMW (good): How might we make citizens feel confident they have all the information they need?   

#4 Phrase Your HMW Questions Positively  

Stating your HMW questions positively can generate more ideas and also encourage creativity.  

If you find yourself using negative verbs like ‘reduce,’ ‘remove,’ ‘prevent,’ ask yourself if you can frame things more positively by using positive action verbs, like ‘increase,’ ‘create,’ ‘enhance,’ ‘promote’ and so on.  

Together with the Challenger, choose the mentors and jury members. Also, make sure to discuss the final award, advisinf for practical, understandable and fun award 😊 Use a separate meeting to discuss and send out invitations.  

Tip: The jury usually consists of one challenger representative plus relevant system actors / influencers. The challenger can suggest system actors/influencers who might be reached out by email.

Time to publish the call for registrations! You can do that on the Future Hacks blog post and invite participants to the hackathon! Make sure to present the challenge, the jury and the prize; and spread the word as broad and as wide as you can. Contact possible participants personally by extending the core group of advocacy network members with new ones (or alternatively introduce an application process through social media to join Hackathon Teams). 

After all registrations have been accepted, invite all participants in an online session where the groups/teams entering the DevPolHack can be formed. Your role as an organizer will be to ensure that each team has a good balance of diverse skills and expertise, gender and age. In the session, let people self-declare their profile (along predefined criteria), then build teams. Jury and mentors are encouraged to take part and meet the participants in this session. 

Tip: Basic skills needed in each Team: Thematic expertise; Communication skills; Digital facilitation skills, Creative and Critical thinking. Groups should not be larger than 6 persons, ideally 4-5 people. 

What do you need to do in the preparation phase?

1. Call for Challengers 

As an organizer, you are first hunting for most relevant and interesting challenge that the #DevPolHack process can help tackle or solve. In step one, please publish a call for expression of interest to attract “Challengers” – projects or organisations who want to enter their specific challenge for a Hackathon. Communicate clearly that 

  • the Hackathon focuses on advocacy solutions, not on ‘technical’ aspects and solutions (e.g. service delivery, training provision); 
  • all submissions will be considered along a few criteria (explain them and provide each one example of a good and a bad proposal); 
  • the ‘client’ is expected to offer a decent prize to the hackathon winning team (give examples of a decent prize). 

Tip: Use social media to advertise your call and attrach more applications.Suggested channels: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, Personalised invitations via Email etc. 

2. Challenge Selection 

From the submissions received, select a challenge that meets the defined criteria for an advocacy hackathon:  

  • clearly defined advocacy challenge/problem (i.e. linked to regulatory, legal, institutional framework);  
  • interesting for sufficiently large number of participants (see team formation); 
  • demonstrated will and ability of the “Challenger” to implement possible solutions (e.g. as a project, established organisation, network); 
  • addressing one of Helvetas’ fields of expertise: private sector development, vocational education, governance, civil society strengthening. 

Tip: make sure each team member or facilitator is part of the selection. We suggest ranking proposals individually, based on a predefined template with the criteria from above, followed by an online meeting to discuss and make the final decision. When the decision is made, make sure to get back to all candidates to communicate and explain the decision. 

3. Preparation session for How-might-we question formation 

Now that you have your challenger selected, it is time to dive into the selected challenge. Invite the challenger to a preparatory session to concretize the challenge and get focus. If time allows, we suggest organizing two consecutive exercises: 

  • Do a “But Why”-exercise and  
  • formulate a ‘How might we’-question 

If you have to choose only one, we suggest going with the How-might-we question.

How to do a “But Why” exercise?

The “But why?” technique is one method used to identify underlying causes of a community issue. These underlying factors are called “root causes.” The “But why?” technique examines a challenge by asking questions to find out what caused it. Each time an answer is given, a follow-up “But why?” is asked.  

Exact steps: Organize a session with the challenge host, ideally with their team. Ask them to write down the challenge they defined for this hackathon in the simplest possible way. Allow for the group to discuss and decide on the challenge definition (10 mins). Then start with a collective reflection on But Why? At each But Why the team is capturing and writing their answer. They have 10 mins per “but why” to find an answer. 

Link to the board: https://miro.com/app/board/uXjVM7sGeVo=/ 

Formulate a ‘How might we’-question (solution focused, not problem-focused)

How Might We (HMW) questions is a technique for the problem definition phase of design thinking. It is a technique that allows you to sift through all the stubborn and rigid issues discovered during the research of the Empathy step and helps to define solvable problems.

How to do it best?  

#1 Start with the Problems (or Insights) You’ve Uncovered  

The challenge host and team will be crucial for generating the HMW question. In a session, explain the HMW technique and share few examples of HMWs that are not specific.  

For example, let’s look at this question: How might we improve use digital advocacy to inspire more recycling in the Western Balkans? This question is not specific to what the team knows or has uncovered in their experience working on green policies in the Balkans. This question might sound good but the answers to it can result in ideas that don’t address the root problems and the insights the team has uncovered. If the problem is that citizens aren’t recycling because the infrastructure is messy and unorganized, a more suitable HMW question would be How might we increase awareness and encourage citizens to request better support in recycling from the municipality?    

#2 Avoid Suggesting a Solution in Your HMW Question  

It can be easy to limit your thinking and embed solutions in your HMW questions. But doing so restricts the pool of possibilities, and fewer ideas are generated. In the example below, the first HMW suggests a particular type of solution, whereas the second is agnostic about any particular solution.   

Example:  

Insight: Citizens are often unsure about where to recycle.  

HMW (poor): How might we tell citizens where to recycle?  

HMW (good): How might we make citizens feel confident they are able to recycle and find their best option?  

The problem with the first HMW question is that only solutions related to communication will be generated – and digital advocacy solutions are much much broader.   

#3 Focus Your HMWs on the Desired Outcome  

To avoid solving symptoms of the problems rather than the root problems themselves, ask yourself whether your HMW question focuses on the desired outcome. In the example below, the first HMW question loses sight of what we really want to achieve.   

Problem: Citizens have no time to recycle.  

HMW (poor): How might we decrease the stress in time management and help citizens recycle?  

HMW (good): How might we make citizens feel confident they have all the information they need?   

#4 Phrase Your HMW Questions Positively  

Stating your HMW questions positively can generate more ideas and also encourage creativity.  

If you find yourself using negative verbs like ‘reduce,’ ‘remove,’ ‘prevent,’ ask yourself if you can frame things more positively by using positive action verbs, like ‘increase,’ ‘create,’ ‘enhance,’ ‘promote’ and so on.  

4. Mentors, Jury & Award  

Together with the Challenger, choose the mentors and jury members. Also, make sure to discuss the final award, advisinf for practical, understandable and fun award 😊 Use a separate meeting to discuss and send out invitations.  

Tip: The jury usually consists of one challenger representative plus relevant system actors / influencers. The challenger can suggest system actors/influencers who might be reached out by email.  

5. Launch registrations to the hackathon 

Time to publish the call for registrations! You can do that on the Future Hacks blog post and invite participants to the hackathon! Make sure to present the challenge, the jury and the prize; and spread the word as broad and as wide as you can. Contact possible participants personally by extending the core group of advocacy network members with new ones (or alternatively introduce an application process through social media to join Hackathon Teams). 

6. Onboarding session 

After all registrations have been accepted, invite all participants in an online session where the groups/teams entering the DevPolHack can be formed. Your role as an organizer will be to ensure that each team has a good balance of diverse skills and expertise, gender and age. In the session, let people self-declare their profile (along predefined criteria), then build teams. Jury and mentors are encouraged to take part and meet the participants in this session. 

Tip: Basic skills needed in each Team: Thematic expertise; Communication skills; Digital facilitation skills, Creative and Critical thinking. Groups should not be larger than 6 persons, ideally 4-5 people. 

If you are (interested in being) a #DevPolHack Innovation Partner

Great to see that you have a challenge to solve – we are passionate about exactly that! As a first step, please watch out the Future Hackathons website because all open calls for Challenges are always published there (even before event registrations are open). When you see an open call, please apply and share as much detail about your challenge as possible. Your aim in this stage is not to overload the organizers with information, but to make it clear why you feel the DevPolHack process is suitable for solving your challenge. After the application is sent, you will get an answer in few days! If you got in, here is what will follow: 

1.You will be invited to a preparatory session to concretise the challenge and get focus. The organizer will host two consecutive exercises: 

  • Do a “But Why”- exercise and  
  • formulate a ‘How might we’-question 

These exercises will shed some new light to how you understand the problem and what you can expect from the #DevPolHack experience. 

2. Together with the organizer, you will have to choose the mentors and jury members. Every jury has one member that represented the challenger, while the other members are relevant system actors/influencers. Use a separate meeting to discuss and send out invitations. You are welcomed to recommend experts in the challenge and/or local context. 

3. Spread the word about the hackathon, sharing the link sent by the Organizers. Use social media, but also newsletters or personal emails to reach out to people. 

4. After all participants are confirmed, join the onboarding session where you can meet all participants and potentially the mentors and jury members. 

If you are (interested in being) a #DevPolHack participant

Great decision – this will surely be an unforgettable experience! As a participant in the #DevPolHack, you are responsible for embracing the attitude and responsibilities of a designer. What does that mean?  

  1. Trust the process – get comfortable with confusion and help other participants get comfortable with it  
  2. Be on time and respect the timing of the process – because time means freedom and creativity at its best. If you have few more things to discuss in your group but the facilitator says move on to the next step, take the next step 😊  
  3. Use “Yes, and” more then “No, but..”  when listening to other participants.
  4. Ensure that people around you are taking time and space to express themselves, and it’s not only you talking.
  5. If online: please do your best to keep the camera on all throughout. 

 

What do you need to do in the preparation phase?  

  1. watch out the Future Hackathons website because all open calls for #DevPolHacks
  2. Register your interest and sign up for any updates on the way
  3. Spread the word about the hackathon and get other friends, peers or colleagues on board too!
  4. Once you are IN, join the onboarding session, to meet other participants and find/form your team.

Tip: Basic skills needed in each Team: Thematic expertise; Communication skills; Digital facilitation skills, Creative and Critical thinking 

  1. Get to know your team and join a session where you can share more about each other. The organizer will invite you to one, but we also encourage setting up a whatsapp (or any IM) group with your team members, so you can get to know each other better. 

    Game suggestion that can help with that: 

2truths & a lie


https://miro.com/app/board/uXjVM7sGeVo=

The game Two Truths and a Lie is usually played with a small group of people, but it can be played with just two people or a giant group of people, too. To start, one person has to give three statements about themselves to the rest of the group. The trick is: all of the statements won’t be true—two of the statements given should be and one should be a lie. After you’re finished, everyone should guess which statement they think you made up. Once everyone has made their guess, reveal which statement was your lie. Keep the game going by then choosing someone who guessed correctly to go next and then play as many rounds as you’d like. If the group is larger than 10 people, match people in pairs so they can share their 2 truths & a lie with each other.  

Example: 

We played the 2 truths and a lie for “fun facts about myself”. I had these three statements written: 

  1. I ran a half-marathon last year. 
  2. I don’t have a netflix account 
  3. I know how to juggle. 

In this case, the lie is: I don’t have a netflix account 😊 

For #DevPolHack, you can also use this game in a different way 😊 

The team leader or facilitator can come up with several statements about digital advocacy or the challenge we chose, and the rest of the group votes which one is the lie.  

Example: 

  1. Digital advocacy is about campaigning. 
  2. Digital advocacy is only for young people. 
  3. Digital advocacy can make use of chatGPT. 

The lie is: Digital advocacy is ONLY for young people. 

The game can be played at a separate session or team meeting prior to the hackathon or as a starting game when the hackathon begins. 

6. Add a photo of your team to the website and promote the start of the DevPolHack 😊

Now that we have the team, the tools and the challenge – let’s organize a fun way to engage with team members, jury members, participants or anyone interested. 

Now that we have the teams and the challenge – the only missing part is the tools that will help us get there. In the links below, you will find useful tips on tools to use, especially for online engagement. As a participant or a Innovation Partner, feel free to skip this part and click to the Next Chapter.

“If the only tool you have is a hammer, you treat everything as if it were a nail.”
-Abraham Maslow-

DevPolHack tools

The DevPolHack process will expose you to a variety of tools that encourage you to think “outside-of-the-box” or even get rid of the box. In this toolbox, we cover the basics how to create safe spaces and possibility for designing solutions together with other people. These tools will be embedded in the different chapters, sometimes available as text, templates, games or videos. The most important part to remember is that the DevPolHack is not just several tools grouped together. It is the relationship and flow between these tools that matter. Whether we offer tools and techniques to support conversations or we guide you into prototyping, this process will make sure you experience working together. Unfortunately, most of the time just working together already has challenges. Communication, bias, inequity, power dynamics, accessibility and politics to name a few. So just like any other skill or activity you might want to succeed in, becoming an expert in DevPolHack and these tools is iterative and experience-driven.   

To dive right into the tools of #DevPolHack, use the search button: 

For online #DevPolHacks 

For online #DevPolHacks 

For successful online #DevPolHacks, we suggest using an online white board that will allow for co-creation and real-time collaboration in the virtual world. An online whiteboard is a web application that allows people to use their Internet browser and mouse as a physical whiteboard and marker respectively. The best options with their pros and cons are listed here: 

miro

Miro 

Pros: 

  • Simple interface with a plethora of tools to draw your ideas 
  • Free to use 
  • Can be set up without any giving credit card details 
  • Allows you to choose a template to start your projects from 

Cons: 

  • Asks too many questions while setting up your account 
  • Limited free use for a smaller number of participants and up to 3 boards. 

Website URL: https://miro.com/ 

(for the purpose of this toolbox, we will be using Miro and if this is your first time DevPolHack, we recommend you to use Miro) 

hamboard

Jamboard 

Pros: 

  • The app is free for anyone with a valid Google account 
  • Gives complete control over the privacy and security of the online Canvases 
  • Offers plain and clean interface 
  • Allows you to set background to make the board more engaging 

Cons: 

  • Limited options to draw symbols and icons 
  • Whiteboards can be saved only in PDF format 

Website URL: https://jamboard.google.com 

tutorialpoint

Tutorialspoint 

Pros: 

  • Free to use 
  • No sign up or sign in required 
  • Easy to access 
  • Intuitive interface 
  • Works on any web browser 

Cons: 

  • Doesn’t offer an export option other than right-clicking the Canvas and using ‘Save image as’ to save your visuals on your PC 
  • No templates are available 

Website URL: https://www.tutorialspoint.com/

Can be a valuable tool for organizing and facilitating a virtual hackathon. This platform allow participants to connect, present their ideas, and engage in discussions with team members, mentors, judges, and organizers. Here are some tips on how to use Zoom effectively for your event:

Use Zoom's video meeting feature to connect with participants, judges, and organizers. Schedule and host meetings for orientations, team check-ins, presentations, and awards ceremonies.

Utilize Zoom's breakout room feature to divide participants into smaller teams during work sessions. Assign specific topics or tasks to each breakout room, and allow participants to collaborate within their respective groups.

Encourage participants to share their screens during presentations or demonstrations of their projects. This allows for a clear and interactive showcase of their work.

Leverage Zoom's chat feature for real-time communication during the hackathon. Participants can ask questions, share resources, and collaborate through chat messages.

Record important sessions such as orientations, presentations, and award ceremonies. This allows participants to revisit the content later and serves as a reference for future events.

Engage participants by utilizing Zoom's polling feature. Conduct quick surveys or polls to gather feedback, opinions, or voting during the hackathon.

Utilize the waiting room feature to manage the flow of participants. This allows organizers to control access to the main session and ensure that only authorized individuals join.

Set up dedicated Q&A sessions using Zoom's webinar feature. This allows participants to ask questions to judges or guest speakers in a structured manner.

Implement appropriate security measures to protect your virtual hackathon. Use features like meeting passwords, waiting rooms, and host controls to ensure a secure and smooth experience for all participants.

Conduct test sessions prior to the hackathon to ensure that all participants are familiar with Zoom features and can troubleshoot any technical issues in advance.
 
Remember to communicate clear instructions to participants on how to join Zoom meetings, use the features effectively, and adhere to any guidelines specific to your hackathon. With careful planning and effective use of Zoom, you can create an engaging and collaborative virtual hackathon experience.

Ensure that participants have access to technical support throughout the hackathon. Set up a dedicated email address or a support channel where participants can report technical issues, seek assistance, and receive prompt responses. Assign a technical support team to address common issues, troubleshoot problems, and provide guidance to participants whenever needed.

Internal Team Tools

Internal Team Tools  

In our digital age, there are myriad tools and apps for communication.  Our suggestion is to keep things as simple and direct as possible.  As you work together to accomplish things, keep responsibilities clear and communications as-needed.  There’s a lot to get done in just a few months and disorganized communication can eat up a lot of time. 

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MS Teams 

The Helvetas Regional Advocacy Team uses MS Teams as a task/project management software. Feel free to check it out here. We’ve found it to be very useful in keeping the team informed on the progress to accomplish a task. 

Email 

You will use your existing email address as your email address for the #DevPolHack 

meetings

 Live-time meetings

Whether it’s in person or via telephone, Skype or Google hangout, you can’t beat hearing voices, seeing faces and getting your whole team together to discuss priorities and review reasons to dance. We suggest weekly team meetings!