About the Ideathon

As countries in our region gradually recover from the COVID-19 crisis and adapt to a combination of office and home-based work, effective and adaptive solutions are needed to maintain/increase labor productivity under the new normal. In the context of the public sector, this includes developing/adapting to new ways to ensure continuity of work and administrative functions, maintain service delivery, optimize engagement and collaboration, share knowledge and learning, break down organizational silos that may be reinforced by this new arrangement, etc.

This Ideathon will challenge teams to identify specific challenges facing public sector entities and propose innovative ideas for solutions that can make adaptation to the new normal effective and efficient. Teams are encouraged to think of solutions that will improve collaboration, optimize interactive engagement, breakdown organizational silos, and encourage knowledge sharing within and across organizations, which can eventually be translated into regular work settings as well.

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Ideathon Theme

In the context of the COVID-19 crisis and the need to adapt to a “new normal”, what are the priority challenges affecting productivity of public sector institutions and their ability to function effectively? What are the innovative ideas that could help facing these challenges and foster effectiveness & efficiency of these institutions in the time of crises and beyond?

The Process

How It Works


All interested teams must register before the deadline on September 12, 2020. One registration form should be submitted per team.



Opening Ceremony

The opening ceremony will take place on September 13, 2020. It will include remarks from the organizers and will set the stage for the Ideathon.




The orientation will kick off the Ideathon over 4 days. It will include a series of webinars that describe the challenges public institutions face during the pandemic.




The Ideathon will be 4 days. Teams will develop their solutions with support from the coaching team.




The submission deadline is on September 21, 2020 at midnight. Teams will submit their solution via the submission form and attach accompanying resources.



Awards Ceremony

The awards ceremony will take place in November 2020. The winning teams will be announced and awarded their prize.



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Who can join?

Teams should comprise of 3-7 members residing in one of the Arab States and must include at least one team member who is a public sector employee, and at least one member who holds the nationality of one of the Arab countries.

It is possible (and encouraged) for teams to partner with other Arab nationals to join their team.

The Evaluation

Selection Criteria

  • How well the problem is identified?

  • How well does the solution/idea address the identified barriers to productivity?

  • Is the solution innovative? 

  • Is it feasible to implement the solution in the Covid-19 context?

  • How applicable is this solution beyond the Covid-19 context?

  • How adaptable is the solution across different countries and organizational contexts?

  • Is this something people would be motivated to use? 

  • Does the proposed set of solutions can be also effective on the longer term?

  • Overall benefit to people residing in Arab Region, economic impact (job creation)

  • How replicable is the solution?

  • Is the solution scalable?

  • The degree to which a proposed idea can contribute to national development priorities

  • The degree to which a proposed idea is applicable to more countries in the Arab Region.

  • The degree to which a proposed solution shall contribute to any SDG (or SDGs).

The Support

Your Coaching Team



First Place

Second Place


Third Place


The Kickoff

Opening Ceremony

The opening ceremony will kickstart the Regional Ideathon on September 13. It will include remarks from the Kuwait General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development, United Nations Development Programme, and the World Bank.
There will be an introduction to the organizers and partners, coaching team, and the Ideathon agenda.

Dr. Khaled Mahdi

Secretary General
 of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development

Hideko Hadzialic

Resident Representative
United Nations Development Programme Kuwait

Ghassan Alkhoja

Resident Representative
World Bank Country Office



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