The Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) through its efforts to provide sustainable electricity access for the Nigerian people via the promotion of renewable energy and energy efficiency solutions is exploring the use of emerging technologies to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of electricity supply models.
In this line, the Federal Ministry of Power (FMP) with the support from the Nigerian Energy Support Programme (NESP) and in collaboration with the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and Ethereum Foundation (EF), is organising a Hackathon to explore the potential that blockchain technology offers to improve solar mini-grid systems in Nigeria.
Due to the ongoing situation with the global COVID- 19 pandemic, this Hackathon will be held virtually.
Applications are hereby invited for:
Title: ETHLagos Virtual Hackathon for Developing New Technology Solutions
Applicants are expected to submit an online application to participate in the Hackathon for developing new technology solutions, particularly using blockchain, to improve solar mini- grids and SHS models according to the following challenges:
- Financing: Develop solutions for transparent, traceable and verifiable data to improve funding for decentralised electrification projects.
- Operations: Develop solutions establishing sustainable operations of decentralised electrification projects from verifiable meter readings and measurements, transparent bills/payments collection and other areas.
- Regulation: Develop solutions for real time data access to Government planners and regulators for faster and better decision making.
- Planning: Develop solutions to enable planning of electrification systems as well as data collection from mini grids to enable a market for electrification data.
In their application, applicants must indicate their 2 preferred challenges (out of the 4 mentioned above). Applications will be short-listed based on the Eligibility Criteria mentioned in below. If short-listed, applicants will then be allowed to follow sessions organised specifically for these challenges during the Hackathon.
Short-listed participants will have the opportunity to connect with each other on an online forum to start forming teams ahead of the Hackathon. Each team will be made up of 5 to 7 people consisting of software developers, energy engineers and entrepreneurs.
The Hackathon will run for approximately 3 weeks in 2 phases:
- Phase 1 (#Learn): The learning phase will run for approximately 2 weeks and will consist of several short compulsory webinars run by experts in blockchain, energy and business. In this phase, participants will learn more about how to successfully participate in the Hackathon.
- Phase 2 (#Build): The build phase is the ‘Hackathon’ or competition phase. In this phase, participants will get to work in teams to build solutions for one of the challenges identified for the Hackathon. This phase will run for approximately one week and will be accompanied by daily Q&A sessions with the experts.
All short-listed participants will receive a certificate of participation on completion of the full programme.
At the end of Phase 2, short-listed applicants will then be able to submit a proposal for 1 out of the 2 challenges for which they applied for. The selection process (including criteria) for the proposals to be submitted by the short-listed applicants will be announced during the Hackathon.
The winning team will sign a support agreement with FMP and will be entitled to receive support from NESP for up to 90 expert-days, as follows:
- They will be entitled to receive Technical Assistance from NESP covering the following aspects:
- Energy, including technical, financial and legal aspects.
- Blockchain (software development).
- Business development, including company registration and structuring companies, as well as business planning.
Applicants shall meet the following criteria:
- Nationality / Location: Participation will be limited to Nigerian citizens and/or citizens of other nationalities residing in Nigeria.
- Availability: Participants will be required to invest a minimum of 20 hours per week during the Hackathon period (4 weeks) and 3 more months, if their proposal is selected.
- Access to a computer and Internet: To participate in the Hackathon, Participants need to have access to a functional laptop or desktop computer and a steady internet connection. They also need to have access to electricity to participate in the online live sessions.
- Academic qualification: Participants are required to hold a minimum of a Bachelor's degree or its equivalent. Undergraduates that meet all the other criteria and have an interest in blockchain and energy are also eligible.
- Experience: Participants must fulfil the requirements in a minimum of one of the following three categories:
- Technology: Software developer (front-end or backend) or Ul/UX designer with, at least, 2 years of experience and minimum of one product built. Applicants are to demonstrate at least one product built by providing a short write up (up to 250 words) of the product(s) with links to product portfolios and GitHub accounts. Knowledge or experience developing on the blockchain will be an added advantage.
- Business: Business developers, analysts, product managers and entrepreneurs with, at least, 2 years of experience and a minimum of one product/project. Applicants are to submit a short write up (up to 250 words) of their most recent business venture. Knowledge of blockchain will be an added advantage.
- Energy: Energy entrepreneurs or engineers with, at least, 2 years of experience in the energy sector and having developed or worked on a minimum of one project. Applicants are to submit a short write up (up to 250 words) of their most recent energy project preferably in solar mini grids and/or Solar Home Systems (SHS).
This Call for Applications is structured in four steps:
- The Call for Applications is hereby launched on today.
- The applicants will have up to 10 calendar days from the date of launch of the Call to submit their Application.
- FMP with support from NESP will have up to 5 calendar days from the date of closure of the Call to evaluate and inform Applicants of the results of the call for Applications.
- FMP with support from NESP will then invite the winning applicants to participate in a Virtual hackathon to kickstart the development of the solutions. The applicants will have up to 2 calendar days to accept the terms and conditions of participation.
Application Deadline: 28 September, 2020