To celebrate its 20th anniversary, POTRAZ is running two Hackathon Challenges in September and October 2021. The two events, which will be conducted virtually in light of the COVID-19 Pandemic, will be held under the theme “#POTRAZ@20Challenge”. The first Hackathon will focus on a COVID-19 sub-theme whilst the second one will focus on agriculture.
The first Hackathon will run from 27 September 2021 to 01 October 2021 This Hackathon will run under the sub-theme “#TowardsADigitalEconomyInACovid-19Zim”.
This Hackathon will be aimed at proffering sustainable solutions that make use of Information Communication Technologies (ICTs) to mitigate the disruptions caused by the COVID-19 Pandemic on different human endeavours in the health, education, agriculture, industry and commercial sectors.
Applications aimed at minimizing the spread, coordinate response mechanisms, and promote public awareness, of the COVID-19 Pandemic, will also be considered for support under the first 2021 Hackathon.
The second POTRAZ Hackathon for 2021 is expected to run from 04 to 08 October 2021 and will focus on proffering solutions aimed at solving the problem of low average agricultural yields in the country, and will run under the sub-theme “#TowardsVision2030WithAgric-Tech”.
In a 2019 study by the Zimbabwe Agricultural Society (ZAS) and the Financial Gazette, findings revealed that the country’s average maize production was 0.64mt/ha, whilst South Africa, Zambia, Malawi and Kenya produce an average 5.3mt/ha, 2.8mt/ha, 1,67mt/ha and 1.66mt/ha respectively. Whist the survey focused mainly on maize, it equally applies to other crops as well.
The challenge in Zimbabwe is that smallholder farmers, the 1.8 million households, that constitute the majority of farmers in the country, produce only about 0.54mt/ha whilst commercial farmers contribute 3.82mt/ha, hence the low average yield and low production (too much idle land). These issues require urgent and sustainable interventions that can only be brought about by the introduction of technologies that address the root cause of these problems, hence the need for a Hackathon aimed specifically at addressing the problem of low average agricultural yields.
You can find the application forms for both hackathons in the links below: