On 24-26 April, the European Commission, led by the European Innovation Council and in close collaboration with the EU member states, hosted a Pan-European Matchathon to connect civil society, innovators, partners, and investors across Europe in order to develop innovative solutions for coronavirus-related challenges.
Over 30.000 people from across the EU and beyond submitted 2.164 projects related to various domains including health and life (899), business continuity (381), remote working and education (272), social and political cohesion (453), digital finance (76), and other challenges (83).
The jurors then selected 117 finalists and winners, who have been invited to the EUvsVirus Matchathon, which included a Demo Day (21 May). During this event, the event's partners have helped these teams match with corporates, investors, accelerators, venture capitalists, etc. around the world to put their innovative solutions into production and save lives.
What is #EUvsVirus?
The EUvsVirus Program is a three-in-one initiative (Hackathon + Matchathon + EIC COVID Platform) organized by the European Commission, led by the European Innovation Council with the patronage of Commissioner Mariya Gabriel, and the national hackathon organizations of Europe and the United States.
What is the hackathon about?
The #EUvsVirus Hackathon offers a common organizational and technical framework in which the participants can get involved online and develop prototypes and solutions for technically, politically and socially relevant issues in the context of the Coronavirus crisis. It aims at collectively developing innovative solutions, e.g. high tech, low tech, hardware and software, using biotech, digital tech, societal science and other innovation domains. There are five areas that have been identified as targets for these innovative solutions: Health & Life, Business Continuity, Social & Political Cohesion, Remote Working & Education, Digital Finance, and Other. Detailed information about the topics can be found here.
What about the matchathon?
The Matchathon is an online event with two components: Demo Day on 21 May 2020 and the Matchathon itself on 22-25 May 2020 (period extended to 28 May). This portion of the EUvsVirus program is designed to help the hackathon winners match with corporates, investors, accelerators, venture capitalists, public authorities, elite universities, civil societies, etc. to gain mentorship, investments, and other forms of support that will help put their life-saving solutions into production to defeat coronavirus.
What will happen with the solutions after the matchathon?
We will invite the teams with the best solutions to join the European Innovation Council (EIC) COVID Platform to will facilitate connections with end users (e.g. hospitals) and will also provide access to investors, foundations and other funding opportunities from the EIC and other EU financial supporters. It will also be a starting point of a much longer collaboration between the European Commission and the ecosystems of innovators, makers, and start-ups across Europe related to the coronavirus crisis.