2-3 December


WeHub, Wohl Building, 2B Redbourne Avenue, London N3 2B

Young People

20, aged 12-18


updating shortly...

ABOUT #AcornHackJI

Acorn Aspirations in partnership with Jewish Interactive is running a 14-hour interfaith hackathon where young people aged 12-18 will collaborate with mentors from universities and local tech communities to develop apps and platforms that would help address social problems in their local communities and worldwide.

#AcornHackJI will bring together teens in technology for a 14-hour extravaganza of problem-solving and inspiration. Apart from tech and human-focused design, they will have gained skills in communication, delegation, adaptability – skills valued in any industry.


The skills gap is costing the economy around £63bn a year in lost income.’

– Digital Skills Report, 2016

‘Almost 50% of employers have a digital skills gap, which includes specialist technical roles.’ Digital Skills Report, 2016‘The benefits [of greater digital skills and inclusion] are huge. In this new report, in terms of productivity, there is a benefit of £358 million for individuals, and £243 million for government in additional revenue.’ – The Economic Impact of Basic Digital Skills and Inclusion in the UK , 2016

It is believed that young people lack soft skills:

‘Nine in ten employers believe job-seekers should focus on soft skills just as much as their grades… Yet 60 per cent of young people think businesses only care about academic grades’ – Duke of Edinburgh, 2017

‘60% of managers claim the new graduates do not have the critical thinking and problem solving skills’ – Forbes, 2016


At At Acorn Aspirations we believe teenagers should be part of this technological transformation and have an opportunity to create technology alongside the most innovative minds and tech creators. We know that young people learn best when they are equipped with the right tools and environment that nurture their creativity.

We design learning experiences that nurture entrepreneurship, innovation and creativity in young people. We develop future leaders – leaders that will be making tomorrow’s world a better place. We prepare young people for the jobs that do not yet exist. Young people that learn through our programmes WILL BE the ones to create those jobs.

Join us. Learn with us. Reinvent education with us!

Sponsors & Supporters

Become a sponsor

Hackathon Keynotes & Judges

Gen Ashley

Director, Women Who Code

Jen is Director of Women Who Code London, Lead at Google WomenTechMakers London, Lead at Google Developer Group London, Lead at Twitter Developer London Community, Lead at NASA Space Apps Challenge London

Jacqueline Benjamin


Co-founder and Director of , an online employee engagement company that provides employee discounts and recognition platforms to large corporates.

Annabelle Gawer

Co-Director of the University of Surrey Centre for the Digital Economy

Award-winning researcher, author and educator, Professor Annabelle Gawer is an expert on digital platforms such as Google and Facebook, and on platform-based innovative business ecosystems.

Andrew Wolfson

Managing Director, Pembroke VCT

Andrew is Pembroke VCT’s Managing Director and is responsible for executing the firm’s strategy, leading the investment team, deal origination and supporting portfolio companies.

Dona Haj

Head of UK Office, UK Israel Tech Hub, British Embassy Israel

Dona acts as head of UK operation for the UK Israel tech Hub.

Daniel Green

CEO, HomeSun

Daniel is an English businessman, best known for his contribution to the UK retail industry and for pioneering over £1 billion worth of solar energy to UK households, following legal battles with the Government to remove the feed-in tariff scheme.

Avi Gillis

Head of Digital Diversity & Inclusion, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

Avi is Head of Digital Diversity & Inclusion at Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

Karen Harris

Managing Director, IntuDigital Ltd

Karen is a Managing Director of Intudigital, which is the digital innovation incubator for Intu plc. Responsible for one of the UK's largest shopping and content platforms,

David Bloom

CEO, Goldacre Ventures

David Bloom is a Partner at Goldacre. He was previously Chief Executive and founder of Goldacre Ventures, now part of the Noé group and he continues to oversee this division and has personally over seen more that £200m of capital investment.

James Rosenthal

Director of Global Agency, Google

James has been the Director of the Google Global Agency for 10 years.

Richard Ferrer

Editorial Director at Jewish News & Media Group

Editor of Jewish News (33,000 weekly distribution), Jewish News Online (500,000 monthly page impressions), Jewish News mobile app and dozens of one-off magazines, supplements, guides, inserts and advertorials.

Speakers & Workshops


We do not provide laptops, so please bring your own.
YES! We will provide lunch 🙂
Acorn Aspirations is a social impact company, which aims to inspire young people aged 11-19 into the world of technology and entrepreneurship. We are on a mission to bridge the digital skills gap and nurture the next generation of digital talent to fill the jobs required by the tech industry.  
GSMA, The Walbrook Building, 25 Walbrook, London EC4N 8AF
You will learn how to turn your ideas into a basic working version. Things you'll learn:
  • How to decide which of your ideas are worth working on
  • How to decide what features the user needs to get them from A to B
  • How to sketch your ideas
  • How to build your idea using rapid prototyping tools
  • How to pitch your idea
  • Basic coding skills & UX - HTML, CSS and Android studio
Awesome! Send us an email to 🙂

Podcast: Emily Atkinson, Director of Girls In Tech; Cathy White, Director of GeekGirls Meetup; Elena Sinel, CEO of Acorn Aspirations, Mike Butcher, Editor-at-Large of TechCrunch