Convene, connect, build, and inspire. These are the four core principles behind the PeaceTech Lab developed by the United States Institute of Peace (USIP). The Lab, located in Washington, DC is designed to guide new projects that use technology to promote peace. Programs use technology tools, media, and data for peacebuilding.
Peacetech uses data on human dynamics and sentiment, which the Lab refers to as “the DNA of conflict” to manage conflict. The Lab has programs which include tech exchanges, multimedia content, and data tools. These programs have already reached Afghanistan and Colombia to help prevent violence. Recently they also launched the PeaceTech Accelerator to support startups. The Accelerator boasts corporate partners including Amazon Web Services and C5 Capital.
One example of these tools is the Open Situation Room Exchange (OSRx). This is a data tool that allows peacebuilders to monitor and analyze conflict globally. OSRx uses multiple data sources including real-time event monitors, social media, and existing research on conflict. By analyzing these “digital footprints” peacekeeping organizations can help stop the root causes of violence. In addition to the data platform, OSRx has built relationships with organizations in the field.
For those who are working on their own peacetech initiatives, the Accelerator provides mentorship and training. The 8-week program can help scale for- and not-for-profit startups. Candidates must use “new and innovative technologies to help to bring about the end of violent conflict and promote sustainable peace.” Benefits also include up to $50,000 in AWS credits and $15,000 in funding. Eligible startups must have existing funding and a product in place to be considered.
Learn more about the PeaceTech Lab at USIP.
Originally published on April 27, 2017.