Unleash your inner geek and join the [#b_hack], the Baltic Sea Region Hackathon 2024 "Bridging Borders, Shaping the Future" in Lübeck, Germany on 18-21 July 2024.

Ready to unleash your inner geek to bridge borders and shape the future with IT solutions? How about diving into the world of AI, storytelling and prototyping? Want to connect with awesome, like-minded young tech enthusiasts from across the Baltic Sea Region, all while enjoying an all-expenses-paid experience? Say hello to [#b_hack], the Baltic Sea Region Hackathon 2024! Happening in the charming city of Lübeck, Germany on 18-21 July 2024, this event promises excitement, innovation, and fun!

_who can apply?

We’re on the lookout for dynamic individuals aged 18-29 from or residing in a CBSS Member State (Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway, Poland, and Sweden) who share a passion for IT, social media, or simply making the Baltic Sea Region an even better place to be.

Got skills in IT, programming, audio-visual tools, or graphic design? Perfect! If you’re not into programming, no worries – we’ve also got a few non-tech session just for you!


You will join one of eight hackathon topics based on your skills and preferences. Working in small teams of about five, guided by a TH Lübeck coordinator, you will utilise datasets and tools provided by the TH Lübeck. The results of each session will be presented on the final day to VIP officials from the Land Schleswig-Holstein and the CBSS.

#1. Student Mobility Dashboard for the Baltic Sea Region

Facilitate studying in the Baltic Sea Region by simplifying the decision-making process of where to study by providing a centralised source of essential information such as admin procedures and living conditions.

Student mobility within the Baltic Sea Region provides the benefits of a cultural and academic exchange with a reduced carbon footprint as the distances can be covered by train. The Student Mobility Dashboard aims to address the complexities and challenges associated with studying abroad in the Baltic Sea Region. Students often face significant barriers, including lack of information on academic programs, unfamiliarity with living conditions, and complex administrative procedures. This project seeks to simplify the decision-making process by providing a centralized source of essential information. 


  • Determine the information relevant for students planning a stay abroad
  • Find sources for the required information 
  • Evaluate existing sources
  • Create a design for the dashboard or a prototype depending on the experience of the participants

Required skills:

myLab. Programming skills useful but not required.

#2. Gamification and Regional Identity Building

Using basic game mechanics, work on a board game that seeks to  boost positive attitude s towards the Baltic Sea Region, enhancing engagement, regional identity, and community through creative play.

Participants will be invited to join an exercise towards the development of the game dedicated to foster positive attitudes towards Baltic Sea Region. Using basic game mechanics and creative learning methods participants will be engaged to play and reflect on an existing board game structure. Current level of project development will invite players to discuss and enhance such features as: Better Engagement, Improved Information Retention, Increased BSR identity feeling and community building . By submitting feedback on User Experience and suggesting possible improvements or platform adaptations, players will be directly involved in the final stages of game development.

Required skills:

No programming skills needed. Design skills a plus.

#3. Intercultural Exchange Platform for the Baltic Sea Region

Create a digital platform fostering intercultural exchanges among Baltic Sea region youths, enhancing communication, networking, and collaborative skills.

Young people from the countries of the Baltic Sea region often face challenges when it comes to communicating and interacting across cultural and linguistic boundaries. These barriers not only make personal exchange difficult, but also the formation of networks that are necessary for effective regional cooperation. Many young people remain isolated in their local or national bubbles despite geographical proximity and common political environments. This project proposes the creation of an intercultural exchange platform that builds digital bridges to bring together young people from different Baltic Sea countries. The exact functions of the platform will depend on your ideas and creative input. The main goal is the concept of an intuitive prototype that not only enhances networking (e.g. via virtual and real meetups), but also provides participants with insights into intercultural communication and collaboration.

Required skills:

No specific technical skills required; focus on conceptual development and design.

#4. Green Routes Connect – Shaping the Future of Baltic Travel

Develop a travel tool promoting sustainable tourism in the Baltic Sea region, connecting travelers, fostering cultural understanding, and minimising environmental impact.

The theme of this project is to bring the countries of the Baltic Sea Region closer together by promoting sustainable tourism. The participants are designing a travel tool that will identify creative ways to connect travellers across borders while protecting the environment. This endeavour aims to strengthen networks and collaborative approaches that both deepen cultural understanding and reduce the environmental impact of travel. Participants will develop a prototype that demonstrates intuitive and sustainable travel options and ways to build connectedness across national and cultural boundaries. No prior knowledge of technology or design is required. The final version of the prototype will incorporate features that not only support sustainable travel practices, but also promote cultural awareness and interaction between travellers from different countries to create a deep understanding of the diversity and commonalities within the Baltic Sea region. The exact functions of the platform will depend on the ideas and creative contributions of the participants.

Required skills:

No specific technical skills required; focus on conceptual development and design.

#5. Baltic Stories & Visions

Using AI, write a book about the Baltic Sea Region, blending genres and incorporating AI-generated images and avatars to enhance the narrative and foster creativity.

Writing a book is a time-consuming endeavor. However, with the help of AI, this process can become easy, quick, and engaging. The project’s goal is to craft a narrative with AI that introduces readers to the Baltic region, capturing the unique traits of its various areas. Participants have the freedom to choose the genre, whether it’s historical fiction, drama, or an adventure involving pirates of the Baltic Sea, among others. To enhance the storytelling, AI-generated images will be incorporated, making the narrative more vivid and exciting. Additionally, depending on the storyline, participants can create a consistent avatar, potentially using a local AI model trained with their own face. Creating a tool, which supports the writing and image creation process, is an optional part depending on the programming skills of the group. The tool could additionally offer to translate the book to any language. This project culminates in participants learning to harness generative AI for creating both text and visuals, ultimately understanding how to effectively use this technology to foster creativity. Last, the participants will enrich their understanding of the Baltic Region through the ingredients of the story.

Required skills:

AI, Python. Creative and open mindset. Storytelling.

#6. Good News AI

Use and program Large Language Models like ChatGPT to create a “Good News” ChatBot, using Self-hosted LLMs for crafting positive, fact-based social media posts.

Are you interested in learning how to use Large Language Models like ChatGPT programmatically? We’re diving into how these models could counter the misconception that the world is continually deteriorating. A simple Google search for “the world is improving” can offer enlightening results. Your task is to develop a ChatBot that supports disseminating positive, fact-based messages to generate social media posts (or alike). We’ll supply a ChatBot template to kickstart your project, allowing you to customise your version of “ChatGPT” using Self-hosted Large Language Models (LLM). Your role will involve creatively sourcing information online to craft a “Good News” ChatBot. This project will deepen your understanding of Large Language Models, Prompt Engineering, Retrieval Augmented Generation, and the inner workings of AI systems like ChatGPT. We’re looking for a cross-disciplinary team of creative thinkers with journalistic/storytelling mindsets and programmers (preferably those skilled in Python) to join this exciting challenge.

Required skills:

Gitlab, CI/CD Pipelines, Kubernetes (myLab), myLab hosted LLMs.

Please note that, in addition to programmers, this session is also open to participants with non-tech and writing/communication profiles.

#7. Baltic Perspectives

Use self-hosted Large Language Models to create virtual conversations with characters based on the Baltic Sea Region’s cultural realities, promoting discussion on innovation and sustainability.

“Baltic Perspectives” harnesses the power of self-hosted Large Language Models to simulate engaging conversations with virtual characters from the Baltic Sea region. These characters are fictional yet draw on the diverse cultural and contemporary realities of the area. Participants will prompt the LLMs with information and context, shaping the models to respond as realistic individuals might, discussing innovation, sustainability, and regional cooperation. The project aims to provide a platform where the future of the Baltic can be debated and envisioned through interactive and realistic dialogue simulations. We provide supportive tutorials and examples, making it accessible for everyone to effectively use AI in crafting these future-oriented conversations, regardless of their technical background.

Required skills:

GitLab. Kubernetes (if applicable). LLM APIs. Embedding APIs.

#8. Prototyping a Sustainable Future

Explore how digital tools can shape a sustainable future through a workshop on Human-Centred Design, developing prototypes to address real-life sustainability challenges using creative techniques.

How can digital tools and applications help to shape a sustainable future? In this workshop we will get to know some fundamentals of Human-Centered Design and develop analog and digital prototypes of applications that could help reach sustainability goals. We will identify sustainability challenges that are relevant for your life and future and develop creative ideas of how to address these challenges with technology. We will use different creative techniques and materials (including prototyping software) to develop our prototypes.

We will use different creative techniques and materials (including prototyping software) to develop our prototypes. 

Required skills:

No specific technical skills required; focus on conceptual development and design.

_travel, accomodation & venue 

Come as you are: all your travels, accommodation and most meals will be covered by the event organisers. If your application is successful, we, the [#b_hack] team, will get in touch with you regarding your travel arrangements. You will be staying at the niu Rig Hotel in Lübeck. The hackathon will take place at the premises of the Technical University of Applied Sciences in Lübeck, the Technische Hochschule Lübeck (TH Lübeck).

Application form: https://forms.office.com/e/GA2itAUcTk

The application window will close on 15 May 2024.

_additional information & resources


The event is organised and financed by the German land of Schleswig-Holstein, in collaboration with the Council of the Baltic Sea States (CBSS) and the Technische Hochschule Lübeck (TH Lübeck).