Can Your Tech Idea Change the World? Submit it to the USAID / Humanity United Tech Challenge for Atrocity Prevention
March 28, 2013 Editor 0
On April 23rd, 2012, President Obama declared: “Preventing mass atrocities and genocide is a core national security interest and a core moral responsibility of the United States. Our security is affected when masses of civilians are slaughtered, refugees flow across borders, and murderers wreak havoc on regional stability and livelihoods.” With this speech, President Obama unveiled a comprehensive strategy to prevent and respond to mass atrocities and genocide.
President Barack Obama and Elie Wiesel, Holocaust survivor and Founding Chairman of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Council, at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum April 23, 2012 in Washington, D.C. President Obama toured the Holocaust Memorial Museum before speaking about the Atrocities Prevention Board. Photo: AFP / Brendan Smialowski
As part of the President’s broader strategy, USAID and Humanity United have come together to create the Tech Challenge for Atrocity Prevention. The goal is to engage technologists, developers and others in helping create new tools that can be used by human rights organizations and communities on the ground. Prize money of up to $10,000 will be awarded to the problem-solvers who develop innovative concept papers and prototypes that help better respond to the challenge’s critical issues.
You don’t have to have a finished product to compete: this challenge is about sharing new ideas so prototypes, whitepapers and project concepts are all welcome.
This final round of the competition is open right now and offers prizes for excellent proposals submitted to three distinct challenges:
- Model. How can we better model and forecast sub-national violence?
- Communicate. What technological innovations could facilitate better (and more secure) communication with and among conflict-affected communities?
- Alert. How can we better gather and verify information from hard-to-access areas?
We encourage you to participate and apply! And please do reach out to other technologists or developers you think might be interested in applying, not only from the US but overseas as well.
Submit your idea today: http://thetechchallenge.org/
The final proposals will be evaluated by a distinguished panel of technologists, human rights experts and government policy-makers – including Patrick Meier, Samantha Power, Alec Ross and Ethan Zuckerman.
We know that technology is a tool, and not a solution in and of itself. Simply offering prizes for innovative ideas is not enough. Winners from the first round’s two challenges have already been announced, and we will announce the winners of the next round in early summer.
So, what would you like to see next? What does it take to move from ideas to implementation and what will be their biggest challenges? Beyond prizes, what other support should we consider offering to participants and winners?
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