Geeks Without Bounds works towards positive change by bridging the gap between technological capabilities and institutional knowledge for humanitarian response, civic engagement, and appropriate technology for sustainability. We work to connect technologists and organizations in scenarios that run the gamut from disaster and crisis response to humanitarian systems management.
To bring these groups together, Geeks Without Bounds facilitates humanitarian hackathons (12 – 54 hour problem-solving conferences) via challenge creation, event management, providing subject matter experts in areas such as systems security, UX/UI, software development, and content creation. Our goal is to get experts in a room, provide them the tools and space they need to create solutions to humanitarian challenges, and then get out of the way. These events create the space for people who want to take an active role to connect with response officials whose efforts would greatly benefit from technological assistance. As facilitators, we can shape the interactions of those groups to be ethical and beneficial for all involved, and provide a means for technologists and like-minded individuals to make a living while making a difference.
Geeks Without Bounds bi-annually chooses three particularly promising projects generated at these hackathons to develop via an acceleration process that further connects technological innovators and humanitarian agencies. We provide six months of mentorship in business development, funding acquisition, user experience and engagement, and ethical usage of these technologies.
In order to achieve this goal ethically, we collaborate with end users and affected populations to design, create, and deploy these resources. This narrows existing gaps between affected populations and the agencies that provide aid, helping to transform disaster victims into empowered architects of their own rescue.
Our efforts will create a wider, deeper pool of tech-savvy responders who can make humanitarian efforts boring and community infrastructure user-friendly; our goal is holistic, systemic change through technology that creates lasting solutions for all involved.