The first Soundscape Hackathon was held as a satellite event to the main symposium, and took place in parallel to the symposium in De Krook, the new media centre of Ghent. The goal of the soundscape hackathon was to generate awareness and create support for the design of urban soundscapes, and ultimately to foster the introduction of urban soundscape design in education and practice.
During the soundscape hackathon, teams competed to redesign and improve the soundscape at selected urban open spaces worldwide. Teams were provided with high-quality immersive audiovisual recordings (360-degree video and spatial audio), collected within the framework of the Urban Soundscapes of the World project, in cities such as Berlin, Montreal, Hong Kong, Chicago or New York. Teams were required to develop software to alter the spatial audio recordings by adding or suppressing sounds originating from various directions, and subsequently to design a series of scenarios that present an improvement of the soundscape based on the original recordings.
Four teams of in total 14 persons participated in the hackathon (“Immensive” from Italy, “Noize Makers” from France, “Trio Akustiko” from Austria, and “URCHI” from Spain). The designed sound environments and the way they were presented in VR to lay persons and professionals was evaluated by an international jury (Bert De Coensel, Christine Kerrigan, Francesco Aletta, Maarten Hornikx, Marcel Cobussen). The winning team Noize Makers received an award in cash of 1.500 euro!