Accelerating Local Peacebuilding.
The PeaceTech Exchange (PTX) program addresses critical local challenges by equipping community leaders with technology tools and solutions. Through our work in conflict zones and frontier economies, we’ve learned that while tech tools are available that might help leaders tackle critical issues, there is a significant gap in skills and knowledge to leverage these otherwise available resources. PTX bridges that gap.
PTX empowers human rights activists, students, social entrepreneurs, journalists, and local governments to utilize low-cost, easy-to-use technology to strengthen their communities. Participants receive hands-on training on an array of tools to enhance their work and receive personal instruction from local and international tech experts. Attendees define problems they see in their communities, develop lasting solutions, and then launch projects supported by technologies learned throughout the PTX.
PeaceTech Lab works in collaboration with in-country experts and organizations to create a customized engagement in every country. PeaceTech Exchange can tackle a variety of issues, including transparency and accountability, open government, women and youth empowerment, social inclusion, internet freedom, elections, education, crime and security, disaster response, and more.
Supporting Community Change Makers.
A key feature of PeaceTech Exchange is launching sustainable projects conceived during the workshops through a series of micro-awards. PTX has supported projects like crowdmaps to track violence against journalists (created in partnership with the Iraq Foundation and the International Center for Journalists), websites that host the stories of citizen journalists within communities of internally displaced people, and programs that track legislation and activities of local government. To date, we’ve helped fund more than 30 projects in Iraq, India, Myanmar, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Niger, and Macedonia. PTX is adaptable to every country in the world, and we work closely with local experts to determine the most effective technologies and impactful organizations for each community.
Putting the Right Tools in the Right Hands.
PTX is effective, not simply because of the technologies it introduces but in how these technologies enhance local peacebuilding work.
Take Tahseen Alzrikiny, a journalist who participated in the first PeaceTech Exchange. Tahseen went on to use the skills he gained at PTX Iraq to report on the farmers from his local province struggling with the extinction of their crops. Tahseen’s story, which was recorded, edited, and published entirely from his mobile phone, won the United Press Unlimited award for the Best Story of 2013, “which would have remained untold without mobile storytelling.”