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The Lab's Roundup highlighting stories on technology, media, and data in peacebuilding.
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PeaceTech In Action

Stories of peacebuilders using technology, media, and data in the field. 


SafeCity

Safecity is a crowd-sourced platform that aggregates and maps reports of sexual harassment and abuse in public spaces in order to make cities safer by encouraging equal access to public spaces for everyone and especially women, through data and technology. This data is made accessible to local communities to help them identify factors that cause behavior leading to violence and to develop prevention strategies.

Safecity has received over 8,500 stories from over 50 cities in India, Nepal, and Kenya. These stories raise awareness about harassment and abuse, and encourage women and others to actively report on their personal experiences. Safecity also runs campaigns with local partners, encouraging communities to take ownership of what influences social and systemic change.

PeaceTech Commentary

PeaceTech Lab staff provide analysis on an important trend in the news.
Here’s how radical groups like Islamic State use social media to attract recruits
Sandy Schumann I The  Conversation I June 7, 2016
 
"Thanks to advancements in technology, it is now easier than ever to get involved in politics and civil society. It is not surprising that radical groups use popular social media to recruit supporters. In 2015 alone, IS published 1,000 videos, 15,000 photos, and 20 magazines online."
 

 
​Utopia. How can you top that? This is the question more moderate voices are pondering in the wake of seeing how violent extremist organizations use social media to attract new recruits. While recruitment usually starts with an in-person encounter, the process of radicalization, which can take up to 6 months to 2 years or more, involves consuming and interacting with relevant social media.​ And some of those messages are resonating.​ ​According to the Quilliam Foundation, the Islamic State’s social media posts can be grouped into 6 thematic areas: brutality, mercy, belonging, victimhood, war and utopia. While the western media primarily highlights posts dealing with brutality, this is a relatively small percentage of their total volume. The majority of social media ​messages focus on this notion of the caliphate as a utopian environment. The implications for using social media to impact the radicalization process are significant - simply positing an anti-violent counter-narrative misses the comprehensive nature of their recruitment approach. 
 
Commentary by Noel Dickover | Director, PeaceTech Data Networks | PeaceTech Lab

PeaceTech News Roundup

This week's compilation of the most important news stories highlighting the role of technology, media, and data in conflict zones. 
TalentSprint: Startup that aims to provide youth with dream careers
Pranjal Kshirsagar I Tech2 I June 2, 2016

Given the common problems with access to healthcare and the disparity in the distribution of health centers, several African countries are looking to mobile technology to bridge the gap. The process, broadly referred to as ‘telemedicine’, focuses on connecting health workers in small communities usually lacking in health equipment and capacity to experts in city health centers through mobile phones and, in some cases, the internet.

Hackathons bring open source innovation to humanitarian aid
Johan Linåker I Open Source I June 3, 2016

OpenHack is an OpenSource hackathon that focuses on contributing to humanity.This hackathon put people and organizations interested in software development and tech together with representatives and experts from aid organizations to create and test innovative ideas for humanitarian and development aid.
A Small Mobile App is Reshaping the Idea of Personal Safety
Cell 411 I PR Newswire I June 5, 2016

Cell 411 has become an overnight sensation in South Africa and has been downloaded by thousands of citizens who have been desperately looking for a way to establish a trusted way to receive help in case of emergencies. The app allows citizens to bypass calling police for help and instead build cells or groups of friends, neighbors and family members who can be instantly notified in case an emergency takes place.
The girls learning science in defiance of Boko Haram
Nosmot Gbadamosi I CNN I June 7, 2016

Stella Uzochukwu, a former electronics engineer, is doing something profound. She is teaching girls how to code in defiance of Boko Haram, whose brutal crusade against western-style education - among other things - has robbed children of education in northern Nigeria.
France launches smartphone app to alert people to terror attacks
Angelique Chrisafis I The Guardian I June 8, 2016

Two days before the Euro 2016 football tournament opens in France amid a high police and military presence, the French interior ministry unveiled its alert app called Saip (Système d’alerte et d’information des populations), which was developed after last November’s coordinated terrorist attacks across Paris killed 130 people.

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