On the 9th of November, the second cycle of the EGAP Challenge’s National Competition of IT Projects was announced in the office of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine. The main goal is the introduction of new e-democracy instruments, which can help citizens to receive new high-quality services, effectively communicate with and directly influence the government, and allow the government to achieve new levels of transparency and efficiency. The competition, which is financed by the Swedish Confederation and implemented by the Eastern Europe Foundation, the State Agency for e-governance, and additional partners, along with the support of the Prime Minister of Ukraine.
"Today we can confidently say that the government, business community, and international organizations have joined together for the development of e-democracy in Ukraine. From now on, NGOs, activists, volunteers, and IT professionals can easily take part in a transparent and efficient Challenge, acquire new knowledge and competence, and, most significantly, financial and technical support ", - said Olexander Ryzhenko, chairman of the State Agency for e-governance.
"Switzerland supports this initiative because of the deep traditions and successful experience of direct democracy in our society. We see the great potential in using advanced information technologies to strengthen the role of citizens in building their own future "- said Holger Tausch, Director of the Swiss Agency for International Cooperation.
The second cycle of the competition will be held from November 2016 to May 2017, aimed at the selection and support of IT projects in four priority areas: environment, infrastructure, education and agro-industries. The initial prize fund is 2 million hryvnas, and there are additional prizes from partners including the Open Data Institute, Innovabridge, Cisco, IBM, Intel, Denovo, and the NGO "Electronic Ukraine".
The EGAP CHALLENGE is a two-years initiative within the EGAP framework which involves identifying the most pressing areas, informing and training the target audience, organizing a series of creative weekends and idea-a-thons to select and develop the best ideas and IT solutions in selected areas. Selected solutions will take part in an intensive incubation program, after which a tender committee will select the winners, who will receive funds to develop and implement their IT solutions.
The first creative weekends are scheduled to take place in December 2016 (for news and announcements on competition time-frames of the competition follow on http://egap-challenge.in.ua/)