Open Source Geospatial Hackathon

1904labs in conjunction with NSIN, Bayer Crop Science, Saint Louis University, Geospatial Innovation Center at T-REX, and AWS are pleased to present an opportunity to hack maps using an open source geospatial stack.

When: September 14-20, 2020

The Geospatial Hackathon consisted of both a collaborative effort and a competitive event where teams of technologists and designers will create innovative geospatial software solutions through the implementation of HCDAgile Methodologies and an Open Source Geospatial Stack including ol-kit.

The Hackathon has passed. Stay tuned to our Insights for recaps of the week!

Sponsored by



Cloud Sponsor:


Prize Sponsors:


If you’re interested in sponsoring to help drive St. Louis’ geospatial transformationplease contact us.

Hackathon Details

Leading up to the event, we’ll also be hosting a series of workshops focusing on training for technologies including: PostGIS, GeoServer, CKAN, React, OpenLayers, and ol-kit. One day will also be focused on our methodology, HCDAgile, bringing together Agile and Human-Centered Design to build products that users actually want and need. 

In collaboration with local experts sourced from 1904labs, Bayer, and our sponsors, these substantive training workshops will not only prepare teams for the weekend but provide valuable training on critical technologies.

Guest Speakers

Interspersed throughout the Hackathon, guest speakers will provide short informational sessions covering the geospatial industry, technology, and experiences in their areas of expertise. These short speaker sessions should prove valuable in and of themselves for all Hackathon participants.

Keynote Speaker:

Robert Cardillo

President of the Cardillo Group
and former Director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency

The hackathon itself will take place over two days followed by a day of final presentations, judging, and a retrospective session.

Mon, 9/14Tues, 9/15Wed, 9/16Thurs, 9/17Fri, 9/18Sat, 9/19Sun, 9/20
Collaborative workshop


Opening ceremonies with keynote
Discover / problem exploration
Hacking begins
Primary development time
Ongoing communication with SMEs
Sponsors panel
Speaker sessions
Tech discussions
Final code check-in and presentations
Judging & retrospective
Winner announcements
Closing ceremonies

Team Types

You can participate as both competitive and collaborative team members. Optimal team size is 3-8 people. 


As in a traditional hackathon, competitive teams will be tasked to create an innovative solution using the provided technology stack.

  • Focus: Social Media as Early Warning
    • Competition Teams will be tasked to design and create an innovative, geospatially-aware, social media analysis solution capable of detecting/displaying trends as they unfold and possibly indicating future events.
  • Divisions:
    • College
    • Professional
  • 20 teams max:
    • 3-8 members per team
  • Prizes per division:


Hackathon participants will also have the option to join in a collaborative effort, rather than only the competitive.

  • Focus: Food Distribution: Plan B
    • The ongoing pandemic has exposed the fragility of food distribution channels, with disruptions resulting in viable goods sitting to spoil while consumers deal with shortages. Those taking part in the Collaborative Effort will be working to create a system that can serve as a “Plan B” when elements of the traditional food distribution network break down.
  • 1 cohesive team
  • The project will be constrained to solve a predetermined need, separate of those provided to the competitive teams
  • Like the competitive teams, the collaborative team will also be focused on providing a solution based on ol-kit and the provided geospatial stack

Registration for the event includes participation in the hackathon along with the hands-on technical workshops in the days leading up to the event.

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