The COVID-19 Detect & Protect Challenge by UNDP and (Up to $25,000 in Prizes)

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DEADLINE: June 30, 2020

The fight against COVID-19 is at a crucial tipping point, so the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and, an Avnet company and the largest online open-source technology hardware community, are taking action. The two organizations have partnered to launch the COVID-19 Detect and Protect Challenge to create open-source technology that developing countries can leverage in the fight against this global pandemic.

The new design challenge is a call to action for all hardware and software developers, product designers, scientists, hackers, makers, innovators and inventors to come up with innovative ideas to cost-efficiently support COVID-19 response efforts in developing countries. There will be prizes and recognition awarded to the top ten solutions, and Avnet will provide support to accelerate the winners’ time to market by offering business consultation and access to engineering, design and manufacturing resources.

The UNDP is calling on Hackster’s global community to support developing countries through the sharing and transfer of open source technology. This challenge has three priority actions:

  • Design replicable, low-cost tools and resources to aid viral detection
  • Flatten the curve in communities with preventive solutions
  • Reduce the disease’s impact on the economies of these vulnerable areas

As COVID-19 has shown, challenge and crisis cross borders – impacting everywhere on Earth. However, innovation and ingenuity are also not constrained by geography. The COVID-19 Detect and Protect Challenge is an opportunity to find and apply the best and brightest of humanity, wherever it may be found.

A panel of judges will review and select the top 10 open source solutions on a rolling basis through 2020. Winners will receive global recognition and a variety of awards for their contribution to society and humankind. Using the UNDP’s vast global network and resources from all supporting partners, we’ll work with the winning creators on the best way to transfer the knowledge to those who need it most.


Harness your skills to aid citizens and healthcare providers with everyday tools that support the diagnosis of the coronavirus and future outbreaks. Computer vision thermometers, smart oximeters, cloud-based heatmaps and apps, data science-backed insight, open-source hardware, or advanced computational models — all are welcome.


Imagine and invent apparatuses that help slow down the spread of the disease. 3D-printable protective equipment, easy-to-assemble hand sanitizing dispensers, public alerts, mass broadcasting tools, contamination monitoring, rapid face mask production with advanced or everyday materials — there are no limits.


The UNDP COVID-19 Detect and Protect Award

10 winners will get

  • The Global UNDP Innovator Award valued $1,500
  • UNDP recognition badge and certificate, NXP HoverGames drone and telemetry radio, and $1,000 Visa gift card

The Hackster Impact Detect Award

10 winners will get

  • The Hackster Impact Detect Award valued $500
  • A Hackster Impact recognition badge, an NVIDIA Jetson Kit, a Soracom Global SIM card with $50 in credits, and a $100 Visa gift card.

The Hackster Impact Protect Award

10 winners will get

  • The Hackster Impact Protect Award valued $500
  • A Hackster Impact recognition badge, Coral Dev Board from Google, a Soracom Global SIM card with $50 in credits, and a $100 Visa gift card.


You are eligible to enter if you meet the following requirements at the time of entry:

  • You are at least 13 years of age
  • If you are 12 years or younger, you must receive a legal guardian’s permission and have them complete Hackster’s contest permission form prior to submitting an entry into this contest.
  • You are not a resident of Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, or Syria.
  • US export regulations prohibit the export of goods and services to the countries listed above, therefore residents of these countries are not eligible to participate in this challenge.
  • You are not involved in the execution or administration of this contest.
  • You are not an immediate family member or household member of a Hackster employee.

Eligible Regions: Open for all except Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Sudan, or Syria.


Step 1: Register for the Contest

  • Start by creating a free account on (or sign-in if already a member).
  • Register for the contest by clicking “Register as a participant” on the contest page.

Step 2: Build and Document Your Project

  • Build your project according to the submission requirements.
  • Document your project build using Hackster’s project template. To create a new project, click “create new project” on the contest page or the “+” symbol in the top right corner of your Hackster page.

Step 3: Review and submit your project

  • Review your project and make sure it meets all the submission requirements.
  • Upload a previously created project by clicking “add existing project” on the contest page.
  • Submit your project by the deadline by clicking “review and submit project” on the contest page.

For Further Queries

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