Technology is powerful. Powerful enough to make a tremendous impact on international development. The rapid proliferation of mobile phones across the world has enabled mobile health technology to improve health care for people living in rural areas of developing countries. Crowd-sourcing data has forever changed the impact and organization of disaster relief. People with computer science skills have an incredibly powerful toolset for making a difference in the world. Developers for Development (D4D), a student group at Harvard University, aims to inspire students in computer science to work on projects with a social impact. This upcoming weekend, D4D has teamed up with MIT’s Global Poverty Initiative (GPI) to hold ID Hack, the first hackathon in the Boston area focused around international development.
ID Hack, a 28-hour hackathon taking place on February 22-23rd, will bring over 170 university students from across the greater Boston area to the Microsoft New England Research and Development (NERD) Center to hack on computer science projects for social good. They will partner with over twenty different NGO’s and organizations working in international development, including the Peace Corps, World Food Programme, Endless Mobile, Sana Health, and more. The evening will start out with NGO’s giving rapid 2-minute pitches of their projects to the hackers. Then, the hackers will form groups based on which projects they’re interested in and hack away alongside mentors from the various NGO’s. The best project team will, in addition to a cash prize, gain 50 GB of Dropbox Space, the opportunity to pitch to Rough Draft Ventures, and direct admission into the VenturePact incubator!
The purpose of ID Hack is to give computer science students hands-on experience applying their technological skills to make a social impact. We hope that the hackathon will inspire people to carry on with their projects after the hackathon and form lasting partnerships with their project team members, mentors, and NGO’s. This will help jumpstart a community focused around technology for social good. Stay tuned for a post-hackathon blog post about some of the best projects produced at ID Hack!
- Questions/Comments can be directed to idhack dot directors at gmail dot com.
- For more information about ID Hack, visit sites.google.com/site/idhack2013.
- For more information about Developers for Development, visit www.developersfordevelopment.org.
- For more information about Global Poverty Initiative, visit gpi.mit.edu.