Afghanistan's Great App Escape


Security issues shut down businesses in the Western world, but Afghans are increasingly using technology to keep work going. An explosive boom in mobile phone usage and in apps is shaping the way people communicate, stay safe, keep informed and fill governance voids. This fast growth has spawned some concerns within the Afghan government over the possibility of terrorists also using technology. But the wide support these web-based platforms tailored to Afghanistan’s specific needs enjoy has stymied government efforts to overregulate the internet.

It Takes a Tech Village to Tackle the World's Energy Crisis at Scale


It sounds like a fairly basic solution for today’s energy crisis. Take large amounts of organic waste, convert it to biogas, generate electricity and heat, and store the excess for later use, making life easier for millions of people without access to sources of reliable energy. Simple.

Yet, behind this basic approach from a startup called SEaB Energy Ltd. lies a more complicated and fundamental issue. The world is a big place with a lot of people and many problems that can’t be quickly or easily solved. How exactly can technology play a role and make a meaningful difference in the lives of citizens around the globe?

Startup Increases Accountability for Charitable Micro-donations


Washington, D.C. is becoming a hotbed for collaboration among government agencies, non-profit ventures, charitable foundations and private investors, all looking to drive social change through technology. The third cohort of the PeaceTech Accelerator, an accelerator dedicated to reducing violence and scaling peacebuilding efforts through technology, includes OneRelief, a non-profit charitable donation platform that is taking an innovative approach to micro-donations.

Unleashing the Power of Data Analytics for African Business


Like air or water, people tend to take data for granted. A gigabyte here or there generally doesn’t add up to a lot of money. But what if one gigabyte of data cost more than nice percent of a person’s average monthly income? Read how SuperFluid Labs, a member of the PeaceTech Accelerator's 3rd cohort, is working to solve this problem.

Report on the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression in South Sudan Since the July 2016 Crisis

United Nations Mission in South Sudan and the United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner

This report from UNMISS and OHCHR analyzes the right to freedom of opinion and expression in South Sudan from July 2016 to December 2017. PeaceTech Lab Africa's integral work on hate speech in South Sudan is referenced on page 30.

1,055 Terrorist Attacks Took Place in 2017, Resulting in 6,123 Fatalities


The death toll from global terrorism-related attacks accounted for approximately 6,123 fatalities in 2017, including the Friday Rawda mosque attack in Egypt, according to data from the “terrorist attacks map”, a collaboration between the Esri Story Maps team and PeaceTech Lab, made to present a chronology of terrorist attacks around the globe.

Accelerators Help Fuel Over 1200 Startups with $17m in 2017, Reveals Data

Venture Burn

Looking for some big money in exchange for support and recognition? You could try a business accelerator. In all, 19 South African and international accelerators tracked by Ventureburn have so far this year given out a total of $17-million in funding to 1,241 startups. At about $37,000 per startup, that isn’t anything to sniff at.

Gaza Instagram Stars Want World to Get the Picture

Yahoo News

Sheldon Himelfarb, CEO of US-based PeaceTech Lab which has researched how social media impacts political awareness, said social media can help break down barriers between people across the globe.

But he warned researchers were still trying to assess whether the selective nature of what is published helps or hinders efforts to gain a fuller picture.

"I believe in my conversations with university students. They seem to imply they are more aware about parts of the world than certainly their parents were. But whether or not they are more accurately informed I don't know."

Report Indicates Evolving Trends in Hate Speech on Social Media

Radio Miraya

A report by PeaceTech Lab, operating under the United States Institute for Peace, shows that words that were once used against a specific ethnicity in South Sudan are now being used to target different groups to match the changing context of the conflict. Theo Dolan, Director of PeaceTech Lab Africa, says abusive and dangerous language continues to be disseminated across various social media platforms.

Podcast: PeaceTech and Data Collection for Rule of Law


In this podcast, INPROL Director Lelia Mooney and Senior Program Assistant Chelsea Dreher discuss data collection technologies with Derek Caelin, Senior Specialist for PeaceTech Lab. Derek works on the Lab’s PeaceTech Exchange program, an initiative to connect peacebuilders in conflict zones to media, technology, and data for them help them achieve their objectives. Working with local partners, Derek and the PeaceTech Exchange team have put on workshops in countries like Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan to address issues such as Transparency & Accountability, Countering Violent Extremism and Gender Based Violence.