Nordic-American Hackathon:

Working together to hack the climate change challenges of the present and future

Nordic City Solutions will be hosting a 6-week digital hackathon in October-November for Nordic companies interested in learning about and working with American partners on real active development projects in the United States.

Participating Nordic companies will have the opportunity to:

• Work on projects looking for Nordic partners and solutions to real world, active urban development challenges
• Be partnered with US-based companies for B2B collaboration including Black, Minority and Women-owned businesses in the United States
• Create shared value solutions to some of America’s most critical climate change, energy and urban development problems
• Meet, understand context for and work with Project Owners who will give feedback on proposals throughout the 6-week program
• Build relationships and learn about additional tender opportunities in the US for bids

Nordic Companies can choose from four active development challenges that will run in parallel via our online collaboration platform as part of the Hackathon

Testimonial Video

Asle Ingmar Johnson from Norwegian company Aiwell describes his experience participating in a Nordic City Solutions event in Brampton, Canada in 2019:

How will the hackathon work?

• Work will take place online via a Nordic City Solutions page on the Solved Platform (
• Each Challenge Owner (developer) will present their challenge for Nordic-American team to collaborate on
• Weekly activities will take place on either Tuesday or Thursday: a short workshop on a key topic each week on Tuesday, followed up with a facilitated one hour online collaboration activity for each Challenge per week on Thursday (No activities CW45 due to US Election);
• Challenge Teams will be encouraged to work independently on the challenge and coordinate meetings on their own time outside of the workshops and Challenge meetings (estimated 1-4 hours / week depending on level of collaboration required)
• Challenge Teams will consist of partnerships between American and Nordic businesses for proposal solutions to Developers.
• The Challenge Owners (developers) will follow along and provide guided feedback to teams along the way
• After six week, Challenge Teams of Nordic-American partners will pitch their solutions to Challenge Owners for the opportunity to move forward with their solutions in a market-based procurement scenario.

What is the prize for the hackathon challenge?

All projects are currently active projects in development. It is up to each team to pitch a successful solution with a solid business case to the developer. Successful teams will be offered the opportunity to move ahead with their solution in the development.

In some cases there will be more than one “winner” where the developer will proceed with multiple teams should the solutions prove worthy. It is up to teams to prove their solution in the real market.

What is the cost to participate?

Nordic City Solutions is co-financed through a grant from Nordic Innovation which requires 50% co-financing. Companies paying to participate are helping cover the cost of Trade Promotion Organization time and support for organizing and facilitating the activities as well as the software licensing to run the platform activities online.

As a result of COVID-19 economic conditions, we have reduced the price of participation by 50%. Nordic Trade Promotion Agencies can add additional subsidies based on domestic economic incentive and support programs. Please contact your specific TPO for details (see contact details below).

Hackathon Activity Pricing



Register via the form and a Nordic Trade Promotion Team representative from your Nordic country will contact you with the registration details and next steps.


What is the selection process? Is everyone allowed, or do Nordic TPO’s and the real estate developer select the companies?

The process is open to relevant Nordic companies, municipalities or NGOs who feel they have something to contribute to the challenges. There is no specific selection process. If a company was very off-base, we might intervene or have a discussion to understand why they would participate but we do not anticipate having to do that. The Nordic Trade Teams are working hard to share the opportunities with relevant Nordic companies so that we can bring innovative and relevant solutions to the US-based development projects.

What is the group selection process, i.e. are competing companies selected together or complementary ones?

Nordic companies will self-select which Challenge they want to participate in. If they feel it is relevant to their business and want to participate in more than one challenge, then this is also an option but we would ask that they dedicate a resource (i.e. a person) to each of the Challenge Team activities which will take place in separate Zoom Rooms on Thursdays.

There may be competing Nordic companies in the same Challenge. However, diversity of options will provide comfort to American partners and likely benefit both Nordic companies overall. Nordic companies are also encouraged to team-up with each other in addition to American partners to bid on projects in the US as part of the project. There is strength in numbers and comfort from a customer-perspective in knowing that there are a diverse set of solutions available.

What does the contract look like? Is there one available?

A: Contracts will be issued through the individual Nordic trade organizations (in this case a typical agreement through, for example, Promote Iceland) for standard event participation. The participation fee will also be collected by the Nordic Trade Organization and will contribute to the overall project cost including use of the software platform and other project resources.

Who owns the IP from the outcome and how is it formulated contractually?

A: The intent of the hackathon is to create shared value solutions that are impactful and implementable. For this reason, the IP resulting from the collaborative efforts of teams within the hackathon will be a shared by those who participate in the Challenge.

In some cases the results of the hackathon will be used to prepare specific tenders for bidding where those who have participated with have a direct advantage in the bidding process. Other solutions the developer will purchase directly from the teams if they see an opportunity that has a strong business case.

Nordic companies should retain the IP over their own products as brought to the table and determine contractual next steps with joint-venture partners as a result of a successful outcome within the hackathon. Nordic Trade Teams will be there to further assist participating Nordic companies to the degree that this is needed.

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