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European Innovation Council and SMEs Executive Agency (EISMEA)
News article24 June 20215 min read

Data 4 Healthy Recovery hackathon: Solving EU industry’s smart health challenges together

The 48 hour long hacking marathon proved to be an innovative way to find solutions for some of the most pressing smart health and digitalisation challenges Europe faces today.


The initiative, funded by the COSME programme, was first announced at the EU Industry Days. Its purpose, to serve as a platform for discussions on how industrial transformation and post-COVID recovery allowed the rethinking of economic and social models through innovative solutions.

The 48 hour long hacking marathon proved to be an innovative way to find solutions for some of the most pressing smart health and digitalisation challenges Europe faces today. More than 500 participants from all over Europe signed up. TOP32 teams were selected to compete and become Data 4 Healthy Recovery hackathon’s winner.

Preparations started earlier this year

Preparations for the hackathon started early this year. On 27 February, the initiative was launched by Deputy Director-General of the Directorate-General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs of the European Commission Ms Maive Rute, who stated that: “The Hackathon is a great way to find innovative and practical solutions to address the COVID crisis that could support the social and economic recovery. At the same time, the hackathon can help to boost the competitiveness of small and bigger businesses in Europe and modernise the value chains that will serve our societies.”  

The event was open to individual and team sign-ups from visionaries, developers, designers, data scientists, marketing specialists, engineers, entrepreneurs, start-ups, scale-ups, and industry experts interested in the project. Overall, the hackathon had 520 participants from Europe and countries participating in the Commission’s COSME programme, providing 46 different smart health ideas.

Choosing the most pressing challenges to hack about

To support the competing teams, we partnered with various European companies, clusters, organisations and universities active in the smart health sector to pick up 9 most pressing smart health challenges hackathon participants could help solving.

You can find out more about each data4EUrecovery hackathon challenge and challenge partners below:

  1. Personalised predictive medicine - by Estonian Biobank
  2. Data extraction and centralisation for better decision making - by MyVitale
  3. Safe workplace of the future - by Spaceti
  4. Medical products development and manufacturing streamlining - by EuropaBio
  5. Public space safety for customers - by Certific and Bolt
  6. Safe use of medical data - by Digital Pharma Lab
  7. Smart mental health solutions for employees - by Janssen and Minddistrict
  8. Well-being in the remote work era - by Psious
  9. Real-time health monitoring and remote care - by Roche

All the challenge partners aforementioned provided hands-on guidance and mentoring. Many of them will also support the teams with post-hackathon support with further mentoring or with the testing of their solutions in real life.

The hackathon and the winners

On 18 June we officially kicked off the hackathon with the Opening Ceremony and sent the teams to build their ideas into the prototypes with 2 days of heavy workshops

The International jury of the hackathon selected the winners from among the TOP20 projects assessing 4 main criteria: the strength of the team, prototype development process, the impact of the idea and the sustainability of the business model. 

We announced the hackathon winners at the Awards Ceremony on 20 June.

participants at the hackathon 1
participants at the hackathon2


Meet our winners!

1st place NoStressTrial - A platform for planning, running, and reporting on clinical trials. It is specifically designed for small biotech and pharmaceutical companies that often lack the financial and human resources needed to bring new innovative products to market.

2nd place - Migrevention -  Interdisciplinary headache treatment solution consisting of digital headache diary and evidence-based remotely monitored migraine treatment with headache specialist team diagnostic support. 

3rd place - Mental Pin - A gadget for tackling destructive compulsive acts and bringing one's body out of the state of anxiety.   It uses an interceptive awareness method where the user is in tune with the inner changes.

4th place - Cell-Culture Simulator - A web-based cell-culture simulator which uses past cell-culture datasets to predict future ones.

5th place -  Synthetic genetic data generation and analysis software platform -  A synthetic data generator to generate synthetic gene sequence data sets using machine and deep learning models.

NoStressTrial, the overall winner, was also selected as the winner of the category - Medical products development and manufacturing streamlining. The team had previous experiences with hackathons, but this intense weekend brought them the first ever winning title. Overwhelmed by the success, Paula Petcu from NoStressTrial commented:

“Participating in the hackathon is a great way to quickly stress test an idea and to develop new skills. Being challenged to deliver not only a sales pitch but a working prototype, as well as gathering feedback from mentors and potential future customers, is a great boost. We now have a more refined idea, something to show, and planned meetings with potential customers”.

Category and acceleration programme winners Mental Pin and MyVitale Data & AI PaaS  highlighted the benefits of the hackathon to validate your idea by specialists, to get learnings about possible business directions and strategy, to receive advice for creating a timeframe and an action plan, to create valuable networks.

An intensive 3-month long acceleration programme is about to kick off. In September we will inform about the results and present the outcomes of the acceleration programme.

We encourage you to discover our category winners and top 12 teams that got a pass on our website.

Summary and thank you notes

To sum up, #data4EUrecovery hackathon turned out to be so much more than “just a hackathon”!

We would like to thank everyone who joined and got involved, all the mentors, challenge and community partners who helped to make it happen.

We will build the future of healthcare in Europe together!


You have a chance to relive the event:

1. Launch of the Data 4 Healthy Recovery hackathon

2. Opening Ceremony of the hackathon

3. Finals of the hackathon

4. Awards Ceremony of the hackathon

5. Summary video of the Hackathon

6. Link to the event's photo gallery


Publication date
24 June 2021