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GreenHackathon during the ExCORE project

This event, GreenHackathon, was organized between November 21-23, 2022 as a kickoff event in an international ExCORE project – focused on the green transition of coal-dependent regions.

Is it possible to write a research paper in 48 hours?

Possibly not in a quality that would be accepted by acknowledged journals. It is no easy task to write an extended abstract of such a paper if its authors are from different countries (who have never met before) and the topic of the paper is not given in advance.

Despite all of the above, a group of young researchers from 3 countries – Poland, Slovakia, and Czechia was challenged to form international teams and produce the extended abstract in 2 days during a hackathon-style event organized by VSB-TUO Ostrava (CZ).

This event, GreenHackathon, was organized between November 21-23, 2022 as a kickoff event in an international ExCORE project – focused on the green transition of coal-dependent regions.

New ideas, innovations or inspirations are hard to come by sitting at home or being stuck to the humdrum of daily life. So the aim of the event was to gather young researchers from different fields and universities and show them places and meet people they usually don’t encounter, such as experts in mining activities who help to remove the environmental burdens of coal mining and support the local business infrastructure (Jeremenko mine and Moravian Silesian Industrial Development agency, Dolni Vitkovice area), visit the state of the art fully automated production line that is part of transition to Industry 4.0, or enter a smart home full of analytical sensors (Smart lab of VSB – Technical University of Ostrava).

To get better results, the Project Leaders and Mentors (senior researchers from partner Universities)  decided to define the rules for writing the extended abstract and presenting outcomes twice during the event and, above all, decided to set a 48-hour deadline so that the participants could experience work under pressure.

Then, our recipe for the event followed verified procedures e.g. icebreakers, good food (Czech classics combined with an overload of pizza), and a game of bowling that helped in shaping the team spirit and allowed for a moment of respite.

Topics developed by 6 project teams covered research areas linked to the ExCORE project’s idea of the green transition – its economic and social impacts, energy poverty and issues of Industry 4.0.

The teams had to define the specific goal of their research, and draft an extended abstract of their future research paper to be submitted during the next year either to a conference or a scientific journal. The abstract also covered a review of existing literature, a proposal of research methods and the way how to obtain data for later analysis, as well as a description on the motivation and further use of expected findings.

Final presentations took place on Day 3 when the teams faced immediate feedback and questions from the project Mentors. The presented abstracts (5-7 pages) exceeded the expectations of both the participants and their Mentors, in means and quality, considering they were international collaboration in newly formed teams of people that have never met before and had to use English as the language of communication.

Future plans of the teams include the development of the presented abstracts into final papers in cooperation with their mentors. They will also participate in the following events that will be organized during the ExCORE project – workshops of academic writing, seminars and conferences during this and the next academic year.

The project is funded by Polish National Agency of Academic Exchange (NAWA, project No. BPI/PST/2021/1/00007, Strategic Partnerships Programme ;)

The total value of the project is PLN 544,450.21. The project is coordinated by the University of Economics in Katowice, in partnership with: University of Bari Aldo Moro (Italy), University of Verona (Italy), VBS-Technical University of Ostrava (Czech Republic) and Technical University of Kosice (Slovakia), with external support provided by the University of Essex (UK).

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