Science and Technology Innovation Program

The Power of Hackathons: A Roadmap for Sustainable Open Innovation

By
Zachary Bastian

Hackathons offer an opportunity to achieve innovation-oriented goals with limited resources, but require careful planning and organizational commitment to sustain engagement over the long term. In recent years, government agencies at multiple levels have started holding hackathon events of their own. For this brief, author Zachary Bastian interviewed agency staff, hackathon planners and hackathon participants to better understand how these events can be structured. The fundamental lesson was that a hackathon is not a panacea, but instead should be part of a broader open data and innovation centric strategy.

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