Facilitating social innovation through a school emergency preparedness hackathon in Pakistan
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In 2020 Pakistan’s first-ever hackathon on school emergencies was organised, where schools and community stakeholders collaborated to deconstruct problems and develop solutions. The study aimed to investigate participants’ motivation for and experiences of the hackathon. Qualitative and quantitative data were collected from hackers, mentors, judges and organisers before, during and after the event. Findings indicate diversity amongst participants in terms of age, gender and experiences. The hackers’ motivations were both intrinsic and extrinsic. The challenges were insufficient time, absence of investors, inconsistent mentoring, low participation from public schools and imbalanced gender participation. The hackathon provided a unique opportunity for multidisciplinary collaborative problem-solving and accessing experts for creativity and innovation. Future research should focus on increasing participation and fostering social innovations through school-based civic hackathons.