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Hackathon to Examine the Challenges Facing Governments in Australia and NZ

GovHack, a large open data hackathon held simultaneously across Australia and New Zealand, has announced its latest hybrid two-day hackathon event along with an India-based information technology consulting company and American software tech firm.

The event gives competitors 46 hours to create concepts, mashups and models with open government data. During the event, participants will examine the challenges facing government and communities in new and innovative ways. This year the competition has been fully virtually enabled, with the competition schedule, datasets, problem challenges and team profile pages publicly hosted on the website.

The event will also include live-streamed opening and closing ceremonies, Slack as the primary source of team communication and mentor support, and virtual rooms for additional face-to-face collaboration between participants and mentors. To make the event more innovative, interactive and collaborative, GovHack has worked with private-sector partners to improve engagement through virtual learning, AI and analytics tools.

Building on the success of the digital event of 2020, with over 120,000 messages delivered, the hackathon will enhance the collaborative experience for participants by leveraging the US-based software firm’s ‘Huddles’ feature to bring audio-driven discussion and collaboration to this year’s event.

As a lead corporate sponsor, the Indian IT firm has enabled a dedicated version of its learning platform, Wingspan, so participants can learn while they work. More than 30 sponsors and partners from the government and private sector have partnered with GovHack to enable an exciting collaboration opportunity that brings innovative solutions to some of the biggest challenges faced in Australia and New Zealand.

This year, the challenges are focused on energy and infrastructure, our digital future, agriculture and environment, and health and wellbeing. The Competition Lead for GovHack stated that the Indian tech company’s next-generation digital learning platform and Slack’s digital collaboration tools will provide world-leading technology for participants, enabling them to learn new digital skills while combining multiple and diverse perspectives to help tackle key strategic challenges.

The Region Head (Australia and New Zealand) for the IT company added that learning is a continuous journey; to help facilitate participants’ digital skills development beyond the hackathon weekend, the company will extend the use of Wingspan, its next-gen digital learning platform.

The Head of Asia Pacific for the software firm stated that the participants and mentors will collaborate in the company throughout the event to help them connect with each other without jumping from one platform to another. This is especially important because finding innovative solutions to pressing issues is best enabled by an innovative platform.

Digital transformation initiatives that leverage cloud technologies and enable remote working are on the rise in Australia, and so is the demand for cybersecurity solutions, according to a new report published today by a leading global technology research and advisory firm.

A recent report for Australia found that organisations demanding both simplicity and flexibility from cybersecurity providers. Providers should look to develop more comprehensive cybersecurity portfolios, the report recommends.

Senior executives are paying much closer attention to cybersecurity. The growing importance of cybersecurity is changing the way Australian enterprises are procuring related services. Senior leaders are increasingly focused on the decision making around cybersecurity products and services and want to understand their organisations’ cyber risks.

Cybersecurity industry in Australia growing significantly in the coming years. As enterprises move more data to the cloud and enable remote working, they want to improve their cybersecurity services. The COVID-19 pandemic has put a greater strain on cybersecurity systems as many employees continue to work from home.

In addition, the use of AI with cybersecurity tools will grow, the report says, driven by the adoption of the IoT, an increase in threats, concerns about data privacy and stringent new regulations. Next-generation identity and access management, messaging and network security will be key cybersecurity investment areas for Australian companies through 2022.

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