UC San Diego partners with XYO for Contact Tracing Challenge

Calling all technologists/hackers, social innovators and creatives/designers!

Develop contact tracing and other pandemic-motivated wellness apps on an incentive-driven, geospatial location platform


  • Registration Period May 4-June 2
  • Initial Sprint Team Pitch Deck Submission (see template) : June 3
  • Initial Sprint Team Selections: June 5
  • Final Sprint Team MVP Presentation: June 26

Schedule to be announced for online sessions with UC San Diego subject matter experts and XYO Foundation volunteer developer mentors.


In the spirit of Earth2.0 collaborative rapid response (https://earth2-covid.ucsd.edu/), UC San Diego, a changemaker campus (https://changemaker.ucsd.edu/), and XYO Foundation (https://xyo.network/) are partnering to solicit team efforts to develop contact tracing and other pandemic-motivated wellness apps on the XYO encrypted geolocation platform.

XYO is a decentralized network of devices that anonymously collects and validates data with a geographic component. Users of the network are incentivized to provide honest location information with rewards in the form of XYO tokens when their information is used to answer a query (e.g., “Which smart phones X were in the proximity of smart phone Y which reported a Covid-positive diagnosis or fever temperatures less than 14 days ago?”).

The XYO network and its tools (https://developers.xyo.network/) present an opportunity, unique in San Diego, to develop contact-tracing and other geolocation apps that are data-rich and incorporate incentives with the potential to shape behaviors in ways that safeguard public health and promote the greater good.

Apps specific to UC San Diego students/faculty/staff campus-wide or at particular sites/populations (e.g., dorms, healthcare locations) would be a type of small-scale project that can be piloted and validated in the near term.  Others addressing broader-area contact tracing or more general social distancing/public health apps can be envisioned for longer-term implementation.

How to Participate

  • Register as a team or as an individual(s) seeking others to form a team
  • Organize, network, interact through dedicated Slack channels
  • Access XYO platform resources online and developer mentors via Google Meet
  • Access UC San Diego resources online and mentors/subject matter experts via Zoom
  • Present your app concept in a pitch deck for the initial sprint screening
  • Develop a minimum viable product (MVP) for your app and present it at the final sprint competition

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