We call on all UAE residents to join forces to help the UAE

The #MBRUHacksCOVID-19 hackathon is an online five-day hackathon that gives residents and citizens the opportunity to collectively address the challenges that the country and Dubai are facing due to COVID-19. The hackathon aims to garner efficient and implementable solutions to help the UAE in dealing with the pandemic. The hackathon is organized by the MBRU Design Lab, a platform that aims to nurture and accelerate life-changing innovations at the point of care.

Prize AED 50,000 + AED 25,000* from Sandooq Al Watan

How to participate?

Your task is to design solutions to address one of the five challenges presented below:

In this hackathon your solution could be an app, a platform, a poster, a service design, a digital prototype or product that will address the below challenges.

  • Test, Trace and Track: Ways we can better test, trace and track those infected with COVID-19, best practices in how to test, trace and track people for COVID-19 throughout the UAE.
  • Safety: Ways to protect everyone from COVID-19 not only during this pandemic, but also in the future, ways to better protect and prevent our country’s population from COVID-19, in addition to physical distancing and physical protective measures. Innovative barrier measures, low-cost, easily scalable, for everyday use among healthcare providers and for the general population.
  • Community: Solutions to prevent social and economic disruption in our communities. Propose innovative strategies in how to create a smooth transition from physical and social distancing back to regular activities as we know them.
  • Communication: Communication strategies to transmit in simple ways relevant information related to the prevention, diagnosis and management of COVID-19 to all people across the UAE, and especially to those with low education levels and low socioeconomic status, as this renders them at an unfavorable position against COVID-19.
  • Supply chain: A pandemic such as COVID-19 has great and inevitable impact in supply chain not only in healthcare resources, but quite importantly in those for the community (i.e. goods, services, etc. ). Help us identify ways to optimize supply chain among many different industries, so the impact of this pandemic can be as limited as possible.

Be a hacker

Create or join an existing team..

Registration closed

Be a mentor

Support one or multiple teams when needed..

Registration closed 


Registration opens
Start activating your brain. You can either hack or mentor, use the button above
Opening ceremony
18:00 - Live session with the organizers and Q&A
Click here!
Hackathon Day 1
10:00 - Live: How and where to start. Click here!
18:00 - Live: Submission of ideas, team composition and Q&A. Click here!
Midnight - Team composition and idea submission. Click here!

Hackathon Day 2
18:00 - Live: Project feedback and Q&A. Click here!
Hackathon Day 3
10:00 - Live session on the submission process and criteria. Click here!
18:00 - Live session to end the hackathon. Final recommendations. Click here!
Closing ceremony
Live: The announcement of the winning project



Who can participate?

The hackathon is open to all UAE residents who are willing to dedicate some of their time to help the country. The participation is free of charge for both hackers and mentors.

What skills are required?

Open-mindedness and curiosity are the most required skills. You do not need to know how to code for example, as the solutions you come up with can be of a different nature.

What types of solutions are expected?

It mostly depends on the challenge you are addressing and the skills of the team. It can range from a service design or a journey map to a mobile or web app, a digital prototype or a poster. The final delivery is a 2 minute video. The video must be in English.

How can I create or join a team?

Everything takes place on Slack. A team = a private channel on Slack. If you are the first of your group, create it and invite your friends. Otherwise, ask one of them to invite you. If you look for a team, choose the channel corresponding to the challenge that interests you and post a message (don’t be shy). A team is composed of at least two people. A person can only be in one team

How will my solution be assessed and what do I win?

A panel of jurors will evaluate your solution based on its:

  • Impact on the population
  • Feasibility
  • Efforts to implement
  • Alignment with the challenge’s scope or COVID-19.
  • Progress during the hackathon
  • Innovativeness

The winning solution will win AED 50,000. Also, Sandooq Al Watan is offering a National Impact Grant of AED 25,000 for one winning solution. For more information, please read the terms and conditions here. 

Will our team get support?

Yes, mentors will help you as much as they can. You can book a 30-min video slot with one of them according to their skills. Consult the list here. However, the mentors will not help you solve potential technical problems.