For the first time Rail Baltica global project coordinator launches fully online hackathon with the aim to facilitate new ideas around the infrastructure of the future, linking people, nations and places. The Rail Baltica Hackathon will bring together over 100 participants from all three Baltic countries and beyond during a fully online 48h hackathon held on December 10-12, 2021. Participants from across the Baltic countries and beyond the region’s borders are invited to submit inspiring and innovative ideas in either of the three core elements: Connectivity, Sustainability and Community.
The idea at the core of Rail Baltica goes far beyond the construction of a railway – it’s a platform for connectivity which offers huge possibilities for economic growth, cross-border innovation, digitalisation and community development.
Therefore, entrepreneurs, developers, NGO’s and community representatives, academics and students, infrastructure and mobility experts, as well as design and product experts are invited to join the initiative, take part and offer their fresh perspectives on the Rail Baltica project. No previous experience is required to take part, but a creative idea and a team consisting of 3-8 people.
Registration to the hackathon is organized through the event platform eventornado.com/event/rail-baltica-hackathon or can be done on the global project’s website: railbaltica.org/rail-baltica-hackathon
On the Connectivity
The future Rail Baltica infrastructure will offer opportunities for new services that do not exist in the region now but have been demonstrated or offered in other places or by other transport modes. Solutions can be built on both the future physical infrastructure, as well as the economic corridor it will empower. Examples could be related to the reuse of existing building blocks, to passenger services, to freight, to the infrastructure itself, or other things which could potentially be delivered at the same time as the railway and boosting entrepreneurship in this new economic corridor.
On the Environmental Sustainability
The railway itself will play an important role in facilitating decarbonization and improving environmental sustainability in the Baltic transport systems. What further solutions can the global project explore that would help build and operate the railway with the least impact and most benefit to the environment? Example solutions could include the optimization of processes, campaigns involving volunteers, suggestions for PPPs or self-sustaining solutions.
On the Community
The third core element in the virtual hackathon – community. The Rail Baltica main line crosses more than 210km in Estonia, 260 km in Latvia and 390 km in Lithuania. By engaging with communities living in the vicinity of the railway, Rail Baltica has already been able to improve infrastructure solutions (e.g. pedestrian and road crossings, facilitate wider discussion on the territorial development around the railways and services to be offered) and to prepare for the unavoidable inconveniences during construction phase. Example solutions would be ideas on tools and formats, including digital and physical, fit for engaging different society groups and interests.
During the hackathon expert mentors both from Rail Baltica project implementing organizations as well as state, academic and private sectors will take part to provide individual consultations to hackathon participants. Every participant will have access to a mentor’s guidance and advice on improving their approach, including choosing the best solutions suited for your idea.
“On top of already existing routines for how to engage different audiences and seek for new ideas, on behalf of the project, we would like to use the hackathon format to address questions on what services can this future infrastructure enable that do not exist yet in this region? How can Rail Baltica contribute to sustainability goals? How can we ensure communities are an active part of the process? We invite everybody to take an active part of the process of designing the transformation,” says Ģirts Bramans, Head of Strategic Stakeholders and Communications at RB Rail AS.
Working language for the event is English. The hackathon is organized by RailBaltica in partnership with innovation management company Helve.