Hackathons are traditionally thought to be events in which a large number of people meet to participate in collaborative computer programming to solve a specific problem. In recent years, however, the term hackathon has also been applied to the concept of collaborative work to solve a specific problem (and not necessarily through programming).

As part of the New Shape Forum, hackathons across India, US, China, and South Africa will be hosted by distinguished partners at the forefront of efforts to improve global governance. These hackathons will analyze the best ideas submitted through the New Shape Prize, improving their practicability and cohesiveness with each other. All the hubs will have a digital presence at the New Shape Forum.