Western Balkans Digital Competition
Balkathon 5.0
Where you turn your ideas into masterpieces
Time left to apply:

What's Balkathon?

Balkathon is a regional online competition organised annually by the RCC since 2020. Balkathon 5.0 will focus on fresh, innovative and business-oriented digital ideas and solutions. It is open for teams composed of people up to 35 years of age coming from Western Balkans, and it especially encourages high school teams to apply too. If you are looking to turn your ideas into masterpieces, you are at the right place. Apply with your idea for Balkathon 5.0 and win one of the awards from a €50.000 award pool.

More info

Why Compete?

  • You can win one of six 7.000 euro awards
  • You get to pitch your idea regionally
  • All shortlisted participants get a two-day mentoring programme with experienced experts
  • Winners get to present their ideas at the Western Balkans Digital Summit
  • High school students get to compete too for two special recognition awards worth 4.000 euro each

50.000 EUR award fund

Awards fund is 50.000 EUR.

Six best ideas from the Western Balkan economies will be awarded €7.000 each.

Two best ideas by high school students will be awarded €4.000 each.

Networking opportunity

By participating in this competition you will get an opportunity to meet people from the business sector from around the region, representatives of business organisations, and other young people eager to enter the world of entrepreneurship.

Professional mentorship

The organiser has provided highly professional mentors from different areas, such as innovation, ICT, and various types of development, including business development, business environment, entrepreneurship development, project development, project finance, and project implementation. They will be at your disposal for two days to help you develop your idea, and see your potential in the regional market.

Who is eligible?

Competition open to applicants from six Western Balkan economies.

For more details on rules and procedures please check Balkathon 5.0 Guidelines

  • Participants can register only as a team;
  • Teams are encouraged to be composed of members residing in more than one Western Balkan economy;
  • Team members should not be older than 35 years;
  • Teams competing for the main award are encouraged to be composed of qualified individuals such as students; legal entities including start-ups; and non-governmental and educational institutions;
  • Teams from high schools can be composed as a group of high school students from the same or different high schools, with the maximum of 7 members.

What's it About

Balkathon 5.0 is looking for fresh, innovative and digital ideas and solutions to optimize the performance of digital transformation in the region. It is important that digital solutions include a clear explanation of implementation and sustainability, and to be business oriented.

Ideas for digital solutions could be proposed in any of the below mentioned fields, and even beyond. Below are some suggestions and examples of ideas for a digital solution related to some of the fields:

Technology of services
Ideas for a solution under this field may be related, but not limited, to AI-based entrepreneurial business ideas (customer services, predictive analysis, automated Data Entry, etc.), e-services & digital tools, blockchain, cybersecurity, etc.
Green and Energy
Ideas for a solution under this field may be related, but not limited, to food waste reduction, plastic-free actions, energy-saving actions, re-use of materials, reduced water usage, solar energy, wind energy, hydro energy, waste segregation, etc.
Ideas for a solution under this field may be related, but not limited, to transport technology and data transmission from one to another digital device and data, transportation of goods at lowest possible cost, optimised transport, etc.
Ideas for a solution under this field may be related, but not limited, to marine and coastal, mountain and adventure, health, promotional tourism, food, sustainable mobility (on land and water), etc., which would result in a reduced environmental impact of the tourism industry
Ideas for a solution under this field may be related, but not limited, to agri-food industry, farm/food products, production process, delivery, etc.
Ideas for a solution from any other field that is not covered with the proposed topics, but addresses any need or challenge of communities, business, cities, etc.

What’s new?

Besides overall improvements, Balkathon 5.0 brings a new special category dedicated the youngest innovators. This year Balkathon will award 2 teams of high school students from the Western Balkans with 4.000 EUR each.

Balkathon 5.0 Timeline

21 May – 5 July 2024

Application deadline
5 July 2024, 12:00 (CET+1)

5 – 29 July 2024

Coffee Break
Evaluation of Applications
We will carefully review all received applications

2 August 2024

Publishing the list of qualified teams
Announcement of the teams that will participate in Balkathon. Up to 18 teams will be selected

September 2024

Final competition and Award Ceremony
Announcement of the winners and awards ceremony

Apply Now!

Before registering, please check the important documents,
where you can find detailed information about the Balkathon competition.

In which stage of the development is your idea?

Please attach the following documents:

  • Concept Note for the main awards Download
  • Authorisation for the team leader Download
  • Legal entity profile and brief description (max. 1 page)
  • For a team of individuals from the company, the team leader should submit a profile of the team’s composition
  • Copy of the legal entity’s Registration Certificate
  • Signed Statement of Honor
  • Concept Note for the special awards Download

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This designation is without prejudice to positions on status, and is in line with UNSCR 1244 and the ICJ Opinion on the Kosovo declaration of independence.