A community for Blockchain,
Artificial Intelligence and
Climate Change.

Hack4SmartServices Hackathon popular with international students

Over 60 students, young professionals and experts from the Netherlands and abroad take part in the  Inspirational Event, the official kick-off for the Hack 4 Smart Services Hackathon to be held on November 24, 25 and 26.

Smart services Blockchain Smart Technology Privacy Identity

Last night, the inspirational event was held for the hackathon smart services that will take place during the weekend of November 24 – 26, 2017 at the Brightlands Smart Services Campus in Heerlen. Over 60 national and international young professionals, experts and students from Maastricht University, UC Louvain, University of Hasselt, University of Liège, University of Antwerp, RWTH Aachen, Zuyd University of Applied Sciences, Open University and Fontys attended the event to get inspired and learn more about participating in the hackathon. The theme of the hackathon is mobility as a (smart) service.

48-hour marathon smart services

A hackathon is an “invention marathon” involving certain topics, referred to as “challenges”.  Marc de Vreede of BeMyApp explains: “During the hackathon, participants brainstorm about solutions to challenging and complex problems. They use technology to look for these solutions. During the weekend, participants are assisted by coaches with various areas of expertise such as applying smart technology, setting up experiments, analyzing data, building algorithms and writing and pitching a business plan. And they do it all in 48 hours.”

Peter Verkoulen, CEO of Brightlands Smart Services Campus, adds: “A hackathon is the ideal way to force innovation and attract talent. This is why I am so pleased with the high number of international students that have shown an interest in the hackathon. The best teams will also continue to receive support after the hackathon, and might even launch a startup. Attended by 85 hackers, 33 coaches and six jury members, the previous edition of the hackathon (last May) was the largest hackathon ever held in Limburg. We expect to surpass these numbers in November.”

“A hackathon is the ideal way to force innovation and attract talent.”

The initiators

The Hackathon is an initiative of the Province of Limburg and the Brightlands Smart Services Campus (also within the scope of the Techruption program), in cooperation with BeMyApp. The theme of the hackathon is “Mobility as a Service”. The Province of Limburg, Trendsportal, Central Bureau for Statistics and Q-Park are linked to several challenges as track sponsors. In tackling their challenges, the participants receive support from experts from major parties such as Accenture, Conclusion and the track sponsors. In addition to the opportunity to experiment and gain experience, participants can win great prizes including cash prizes, high-tech gadgets and coaching vouchers.


The Brightlands Smart Services Campus is part of Brightlands, an open innovation community made up of four campuses where scientists, entrepreneurs, students and investors work together on the ‘grand challenges’ in sustainability and health. The Brightlands Smart Services Campus focuses primarily on the development and facilitation of a community that can convert data into smart services. The “founding fathers” of the campus are APG, Maastricht University and the Province of Limburg.