Through the Hack Challenge, students, water modellers, utility service providers and community members will come together to improve the affordability, equitability, accessibility, resilience and prosperity of those that utilise water for sustenance, livelihoods, recreation and ecosystem services.

This exciting event will foster engagement across the public and private water modelling sectors, universities and the community as part of the QWMN through a fun and engaging competition of ideas.

The challenge theme for 2019 has been chosen to encompass the broader sustainability and resilience challenges facing Queensland as it looks to continue to deliver water, food and energy security without degrading the cultural and ecological values of land and water resources in face of significant population growth and the impacts of climate change.

New approaches to problems

Hacks are not final solutions or products ready for market, rather, they are new approaches to problems, low fidelity prototypes and proofs of concepts. They form the beginning of a project that will continue to be worked on by the community. Using modelling, the hack theme brings new science, technology, engineering, environment, economics, and culture together to create societal value and identify potential efficiencies in water management or ways of navigating trade-offs between water energy and land.

Examples of this value could be new approaches in behavioural economics, environmental offsets and trading, new ways of presenting water quality data to empower community actions/public policy, or the linking of publicly and privately held data with citizen science to identify potential efficiencies in water treatment, waste to resource and ways to navigate trade-offs between water, energy and the multiple dimensions of land.

What is a hack?

The Hack provides a mechanism to facilitate the development of low fidelity prototypes by providing a dedicated time, data and model resources with mentoring and guidance in a time focused event. While hacks are competitive by nature, they are also collaborative, where the sharing of insights and expertise among the participants are encouraged.

The 2019 Hack Challenge

The challenge theme for the 2019 Hack Challenge event was: Connect and integrate water, energy and landscapes to create value for our communities. The event was held over two days on 5-6 July at the University of Southern Queensland’s Springfield campus near Ipswich.

Individuals and pre-existing teams entered, although the Hack process encouraged teams to form during the event.

The event was suited to everyone with a passion for, or interest in, developing integrated approaches to sustainability and resilience across water, energy and landscapes, or who enjoys working collaboratively in a fast-moving team environment to create, share and shape ideas and solutions.

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