- Housing Co-Ops and Tech Co-Ops: Combining the Movements
Hundreds of housing co-ops are using technology to manage their communities and activities. Some are even home to progressive technologists, and are hotbeds of radical innovation. We'll showcase exciting projects, outline difficulties and challenges when it comes to developing and implementing technology, and open a debate on how the tech co-op scene and the housing co-op scene can work together to solve issues in co-ops and in wider society. Levent Kerimol Lev works at the new www.communityledhousing.london resource and advice hub, hosted by CDS Co-operatives and funded by the GLA. He was previously in the GLA Regeneration team, leading on affordable workspace, and establishing the Small Sites Small Builders programme (www.london.gov.uk/smallsites). He contributed to the London Plan and has managed a range of masterplans, developments, and public realm projects around London. Lev also worked with LB Lewisham on the early stages of the RUSS project at Church Grove. Leo Francisco Leo lives in Gung Ho housing co-op in Birmingham (currently at https://gunghocoop.wordpress.com/) and will talk about their plans for various anti-capitalist/solarpunk tech hijinks: setting up air quality monitoring station, network-wide adblocking, running a tor relay, and peer2peer and punk2punk sharing amongst radical housing co-ops. Nick Sellen Semi-nomadic sometime frequenter of https://kanthaus.online/en He will talk about the co-operatively run house project, the open source software projects it supports (https://foodsharing.de/, https://karrot.world), and showcase the super cool tech infrastructure that monitors resource usage around the house. He's also looking to find people to create a similar project in the UK. Szczepan Orlowski Szczepan lives in Sanford housing co-op (http://sanford.coop), the oldest purpose-built housing co-op in the UK. The co-op has recently overhauled G suite in favour of Nextcloud. Earlier this year Sanford kickstarted a Community Land Trust initiative made of housing activists from local community groups and several other housing co-ops in South East London (https://slcash.org/). Szczepan would like to outline the challenges they are facing and discuss potential collaborations between housing and worker co-ops.
- Supporting Co-Ops in Islington
Do you run a business or organisation in or near Islington? Or are you thinking of setting one up? Do you want the people who work with your organisation to retain as much profit and control as possible? If so, a co-operative might be for you! Join us for this event to find out more... A co-operative is a business that is owned and governed by the people who work in it, or who have a direct stake in it. Generally, co-operatives do not have external share holders, so the value created by the business, stays in the business. We would like to see more co-operatives thrive in Islington, so we are organising an event to support and inform local people. If you're not in Islington but you're interested in the issues, feel free to come along anyway. We will have some short presentations by experts and practitioners, followed by an opportunity for you to ask them specific questions, and to share your knowledge with the rest of the group. We will be joined by: Cllr Asima Shaikh, Islington Council Cllr Shaikh is Executive Member for Economic Development in Islington. She will speak generally about how the council would like to promote coops as an alternative business ownership model. This is relevant within the context of the council wanting to develop a more inclusive economy which works for all residents. Islington would like to encourage more democratic forms of economic activity that sees local people have meaningful participation and control over their lives. John Atherton, Co-Ops UK John is head of membership at Co-Ops UK, the network body for Britain's co-ops which works to promote, develop and unite member-owned businesses. John will provide a high-level overview of the coop economy, putting this into a global context. Siôn Whellens Siôn Whellens is Client Services Director at the design and printing coop Calverts, and a coop adviser/mentor with Principle Six partnership. He works mainly with worker, community and consortium coops, and groups planning to start up new coops. Siôn will focus on the difference between coops and other businesses; converting existing businesses into coops; and how local enterprises can come together to meet their shared commercial and community needs, using cooperative values and organising principles. Kayleigh Walsh Kayleigh is a project Manager and Community Developer for Islington-based digital design co-operative Outlandish. Kayleigh also helps to co-ordinate CoTech, a network of more than 30 co-ops in the technology sector, who focus on the worker, customer and end-user needs, rather than on generating private profit. She is also a member of the Co-operatives UK Worker Co-op Council, which shapes strategic priorities for worker co-ops, and acts as a sounding board on important issues. Kayleigh will discuss the process of setting up a co-operative and what some of the joys and challenges are.
- Tech4Development Pitch Practice Night
Pitch your project idea for how to use technology to advance international development in front of a panel of expert judges and a live audience. If you don't have a project idea but you're interested in the subject, come along for a chance to hear from innovators and vote of which idea you think it most promising. This event is intended to be a safe environment for Tech for Good founders who are considering or developing solutions to international development challenges to have their idea and concept constructively challenged by practitioners with real world experience. Our 4 judges will provide feedback and the audience will also be encouraged to participate, ask questions and interrogate the idea. This event will also be an opportunity for people work in relevant fields to network and collaborate. There is time for 4 projects to pitch. 5 minute pitches will each be followed by 10 minutes of questions, feedback and suggestions for further consideration. The winning idea will receive more in-depth support from our expert judges after the event. If you would like to pitch your idea, please take the time to fill in his short questionnaire, and we will chose the most interesting 4 to pitch on the night. https://chris2865.typeform.com/to/SDS4DF About the judges: Andrew Parkes After starting his professional career as an environmental scientist, Andrew has been an aid worker for the past 13 years, leading strategic initiatives at a global level, and delivering on the ground in conflict zones, natural disasters and development contexts in countries across Africa and South East Asia. Andrew also supports organisational and inter-agency initiatives on supply chain professionalisation, process improvements (reduced bureaucracy) and using technology and innovation where possible. Abigail Handley Abi has worked in digital development as a project and programme manager for 14 years, cutting her teeth in BBC Learning working on free to access and progressive elearning content before moving to help BBC World Service develop their social media strategy and train journalists on effective social media practice. Since joining Outlandish (a worker owned tech co-operative that exists to make the world a fairer place) in 2011 Abi has steered project delivery and operations and been involved in shaping the working practices that make it what it is. Henri Habershon Henri has worked for ten years as an aid worker and development practitioner, delivering response projects in post-disaster countries and most recently in developing/emerging markets. In the last few years Henri has been focusing on strategy and business development for NGOs. She recently moved into the private sector where she works for Every1Mobile, a digital technology and services company, building digital solutions to support social change in sub-Saharan Africa. Every1Mobile focuses on finding ways to best leverage digital technology and mobile reach to engage people around social issues. Tom Lord Tom has been working in ICT4D with tech co-operative Aptivate since 2004, after searching for a way to use computer skills for equality and social justice. Tom has evaluated the UN Research4Life (R4L) academic journals access system in Ghana, and taught basic IT skills in Zambia. He continues to work on the R4L project, and has also recently managed a migrant support system in the US, a drought insurance project for farmers being piloted in several sub Saharan African countries, a refugee camp rumour tracking system in Bangladesh, and knowledge hubs for both Gender and Development and Climate and Development in the UK. ________ This is a pilot event that we hope will turn into a long-term regular series. If you do not get the opportunity to pitch this time round, there may be later opportunities. This event is being co-hosted by the London International Development Network https://www.facebook.com/groups/LondonDev/
- Ethics and innovation in health technology
The healthcare system is facing massive challenges and opportunities when it comes to adopting new technologies. Technological innovation offers huge opportunities for more convenient, cheaper and better healthcare. But there are massive structural issues getting these to be adopted at scale and fairly distributed. There are also ethical concerns about data ownership, security, and profit. Join us to hear from a range of experts and join the discussion. Matthew Honeyman Matthew is a researcher in the Kings Fund's policy team, contributing to research and analysis on a range of projects across health and social care policy and practice. Matthew has a special interest in the relationship between health care, public policy and digital technology, and writes about how new technology can be deployed in the health system. He is a member of the scientific committee for the Fund’s annual Digital Health and Care Congress. Matt will provide an overview of digital health R&D, policy and the challenges and dilemmas involved with getting it into practice at scale. His talk will be centred on a couple of interesting cases like GP at Hand and clinical AI tech. Yasmine Boudiaf Yasmine makes virtual reality experiences that change people’s behaviour. She uses VR as a training tool to immerse people in challenging social situations. Yasmine will present on "From idea to delivery; the struggles of innovating with NHS". The long and frustrating journey of producing a VR training pilot for an NHS Trust an the friends made along the way. Dr.Lisa Murphy Dr. Murphy is a clinical fellow at Public Health England, endeavouring to use technology to improve population health, clinical care and NHS operations. She is also a fellow at Newspeak House, bringing together the health community with other fields to share knowledge and develop innovative solutions for our common goals. Lisa's talk will highlight the ethical considerations of health technology, within the domains of health systems, patients and data discovery and dissemination. Combining clinical experience and research, it aims not only to raise emerging issues but stimulate discussion on how we can tackle them. Emily Savundra and Tomi Gbajumo Emily and Tomi represent Medefer, a Virtual Hospital that provides specialist healthcare and advice once patients are referred by their GP. They will explain Medefer's vision to reduce avoidable hospital outpatient activity and how this led to the implementation of the UK's first 'Virtual Hospital'.
- Technology and International Development
International Development and Humanitarian Aid are huge sectors with complex requirements. It's reassuring that many development agencies are bold and creative when it comes to developing technologies to make their work more efficient and their impact greater. At this Meetup we'll be discussing some examples of successful technologies in the field, and we'll also be looking at technical, political and ethical challenges faced by the sector, and discuss possible solutions. Speakers include: Alan Jackson Alan has worked at the intersection of IT and international development for 15 years. His key interests are Agile methodologies, Participatory approaches to international development and Consensus decision making. Alan is a member of Aptivate, a not-for-profit software cooperative that works exclusively in the humanitarian and development sector. They have worked with small and large charities, UN bodies and government departments. Alan will discuss a rights-based approach to participatory software design. Software mediates relationships between people and represents power structures. Users must be included in the design process of software if they are ultimately to be empowered. Kate Strivens Kate is Program Officer at Start Network, an international humanitarian network of 24 leading NGOs working together to quickly fund relief for small to medium-sized crises. Start Network recently worked with Outlandish to create an alerts map, which is a key way that donors, supporters and members find out about current, past and anticipatory funding alerts. This map makes responding to crises far more quick and efficient. Kate will discuss the need for this type of innovation and the challenges that they faced in realising the project. She will focus on key aspects of the project: the need for greater transparency, the professionalisation of the Start Network brand, and reducing transaction costs. Chris Man Chris is a co-founder of FieldWorks, a UK-based social enterprise that champions socially accountable NGOs in low-middle income countries. FieldWorks exists to facilitate mission-driven partnerships between local organisations and funders seeking to maximise impact through direct giving. Their aim is to reduce the burdens of developing strong partnerships with local NGOs, and in doing so increase the number of innovative actors addressing the SDGs. Chris will be discussing the challenges of shifting power in international development from large multinational development organisations to smaller local NGOs. Andrew Braye Andrew is a GIS team lead with British Red Cross and a volunteer for Missing Maps. Andrew will talk about the technology behind Missing Maps, a project that is taking place in disaster zones across the globe, where places are literally 'missing' from any map and first responders lack the information to make valuable decisions regarding relief efforts. Missing Maps is an open, collaborative project which relies of hundreds on volunteers to meet the needs of people affected by disaster. Jenny Casswell Jenny is the Insights Manager of the Mobile for Humanitarian Innovation (M4H) programme at the GSMA. GSMA is an umbrella body representing the mobile communications industry and the M4H programme seeks to accelerate the delivery and impact of digital humanitarian assistance. Jenny will present findings from the M4H research stream which seek to understand how mobile technology can play a greater role in supporting humanitarian assistance, through reducing barriers to access, improving coverage for displaced people, and working with humanitarian organisations and the mobile industry to develop and implement technologies that support people affected by crises.
- The Charity Data Breakfast
What’s your data challenge? Is your non-profit collecting supporter data, fundraising data, or programme reporting data? What can be done with it all? Do you have hopes for better using it to achieve your organisation goals? Or maybe to cut down your admin time, spot opportunities or better engage with your supporters? If you work at a charity or non-profit, the Data Breakfast is for you! --- The Data Breakfast is a free networking and problem solving event at London’s Space4. The inaugural Breakfast will focus on charities and non-profits, to help them unlock the opportunities their data gathering offers. Who’s it for? ---------------- Everyone’s welcome - non-profits, charities, developers, tech agencies, business advisors. We especially welcome anyone working or interested in tech for good. If you’re a non-profit: ---------------------------- Over coffee we’ll ask you to simply tell us your ‘dream’, ‘cream’ and ‘bread & butter’ data problems that you’d like help with. Maybe your ‘bread & butter’ problem is: “Me and my team need to better understand our organisation’s data” Your ‘cream’ is something that, if solved, would make a real difference to your work. E.g. “It’d be great if we could have an up-to-date visualisations of our data, because the manual monthly reporting is such a chore.” And your dream? Think big. For example: “It’d be awesome if AI could use our data to make recommendations on how to increase recurring donations” Agency, developer or other? --------------------------------------- Simply be ready to tell the group: -- Bread & butter: What your core offerings are. Yep, your bread & butter work. -- Cream: The interesting, bigger challenges you’d like to take on. -- Dream: The biggie. The kind of projects you’re aching to work on; the clients you’d love to help. So bring your problems and offerings! We’ll host croissant-powered discussions and also form groups of common interest. And with your peers and data experts on hand, you’ll likely hear possible approaches to help develop your thinking.
- Effective Digital Storytelling
What makes an effective digital story? What tools do you need to win people over to your cause of campaign? How can we keep the stories we tell fresh and relevant to a diverse audience? Ieva Padagaite Ieva is a member and director of Blake House. Blake House Cooperative is a video production agency. We are contributing to systemic change through the production of authentic and effective documentary, creative and socially engaged video work for good organisations. Ieva will briefly rant about who makes bad videos for good organisations, the common mistakes of commissioning video and then calmly explain why video is a power drill in your toolbox and what we can do to use video more effectively for good causes. Will Hill Will is Co-Founder of the Stronger Stories movement. After 15 years in creative agency roles working with clients such as Coca-Cola, Unilever, and EDF Energy, Will co-founded Stronger Stories, a not-for-profit movement of storytellers excited about the abundance of good ideas that can have a positive impact on our world. Will is going to talk about why stories are important in helping good ideas grow, why people with good ideas aren’t always great storytellers and what we can do to help them. Luke Walter Luke Walter is a Campaigns Manager with Small Axe, a non-profit creative campaigns and communications agency. Small Axe works to inspire people to act on the most pressing issues of our time by partnering with courageous causes, from trade unions and charities to social enterprises and international coalitions. Luke will present his talk 'Rethinking visual storytelling: using living ideas instead of flogging dead ones.' Florencia Minuzzi Florencia is the writer and co-founder of Tea-Powered Games. They make games that focus on communication and conversation in everyday life. As an interactive medium, video games are in a prime position to offer stories that engender empathy and understanding through the player's actions. Florencia will talk about making relatable, non-violent games that help people reflect on their own approaches to conversation.
- Technology, Power and the Workplace
We are living in a time of significant change in terms of the work that we do. Traditional forms of work-based organising are being eroded and unions are struggling to maintain their levels of membership, particularly when it come to freelancers and non-contracted workers. Moreover, with the rise of platforms facilitating low-waged, low-security work, technology is currently seen as a force for eroding workers rights. However, there are examples of innovative technology being used for good, which we will discuss and showcase at this event. We will also examine what more needs to be done to harness technology to support workers and workplaces. Our speakers include: Dan Tomlinson Dan is a researcher at the Resolution Trust – where he’s taken a particular research interest in trends in trade union membership and has worked with Bethnal Green Ventures to launch the WorkerTech programme, which supports start-ups looking to make use of technology to improve work for the better. Dan will talk about the power imbalances in the workplace, and how we run the risk of technology being used to worsen outcomes for workers in the UK, rather than improve them. But it doesn’t have to be like this. There are reasons to be optimistic about the capacity of unions and other organisations to use tech to improve the world of work. Nat Whalley Nat is Executive Director of Organise, a digital platform that gives people the tools, network and confidence to collectively make change happen at work. Nat will talk about how and why she set up Organise, the difficulties she has encountered on the way and the aspirations for the future. Harry Robbins Harry will talk about the importance of technology to the labour movement and the opportunities and threats that digital technologies offer to co-operatives, unions and mass-political parties. He'll talk about the emergence of new worker-owned networks such as CoTech, Happy Dev, TechWorker and Enspiral - and their power to transform both the technology industry and the labour movement. He'll cover the material conditions that have led to the emergence of these structures and some of the challenges that will determine if they succeed or fail. Harry will also crowdsource ideas to feed into the emerging discussion of the viability of a "trade union digital service" to co-ordinate the digital strategies of trade unions. You can see his latest blog post about this here: https://outlandish.com/blog/a-call-for-the-creation-of-a-trades-unions-digital-service/ Imogen Farhan Imogen is Policy and External Affairs Officer at IPSE - the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self Employed. IPSE is a not-for-profit organisation representing the 4.8 million self-employed people in the UK. It is owned and run by its members. IPSE advocates for freelancers through working with government and industry. Imogen will present IPSE's research on the gig economy, which highlights the diversity of those working in this sector. She will discuss the policy changes that IPSE has developed to better support freelancers, including improving access to training opportunities, better parental rights and defining self-employment in law. Rich Mason Rich is a member of the research team at the RSA Future Work Centre. Newly launched by the RSA, the Future Work Centre takes a broad view of the forces shaping work, now and over the next 10-15 years, and asks how we can create a future where good work is available to everyone. Rich will introduce the work of the Centre, discuss different avenues for bringing about change, and share some initiatives found by the Future Work Awards, a global search for the most original and impactful innovations in work.
- Queering Technology
We believe that more diverse teams create better workplaces, and better products. Much more needs to be done to recognise and celebrate the role that LGBTQ+ people play in the tech scene and beyond. We need to make sure that we introduce structures and checks into our teams to make them truly diverse. We are also living in a time when technology is starting to embody social bias. What can we do to counteract this? This event will showcase inspiring projects that advocate for LGBTQ+ rights and recognition. Short talks from our speakers will be followed by an opportunity to network with drinks. Our speakers include: - Emma Green is the Head of Diversity and Inclusion at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. She oversees D&I work across HR and public policy, and has a particular interest in the role of business in social justice. She’ll be talking about external D&I impact in the context of organisational culture and development, with some tips for making change locally and nationally. - Bisi Alimi is an “Angelic Troublemaker Incarnate”- PASSIONATE and ENERGETIC public speaker, storyteller, television pundit, campaigner, actor and Vloggers. His expertise on Social Justice ranges from Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity to Race and Race Relations, Feminism, Education and Poverty Alleviation. He has done a lot of work around “Intersexuality” and currently on a global Intersectionality tour. Bisi will talk about LGBT rights in Nigeria. He will share his story and insights into how tech can make a difference. - Jac Bastian is Head of Education at Diversity Role Models, a charity that actively seeks to embed inclusion and empathy in the next generation. Through working with young people and the adults around them, Diversity Role Models aim to create an inclusive education system where all students feel accepted, supported and encouraged to be themselves and thrive. Jac will introduce how Diversity Role Models use positive LGBT+ and ally role models to empower young people. Jac will explore how DRM use the power of storytelling to prevent homophobic, biphobic and transphobic bullying and how we can work together with teachers, governors, parents and carers to ensure schools are more LGBT+ inclusive. - Dr J, Harbinger of Change at ThoughtWorks, brings queer theory (with a slice of humour) into the tech space, building on Thoughtworks’ dedication to inclusivity and intersectionality. Dr J takes a strategic view of cultural change in Technology through a few lenses, notably queer theory. Dr J will be presenting on 'The fine art of not fitting in; Being Genderqueer in a corporate world'. It is a truth, universally acknowledged, that diverse teams produce better outcomes. But how do we make a diverse team inclusive? How do we make space for differences in thinking, and understanding on our teams. Through personal stories of an adult life in technology, queer theory, and practical examples that cost nothing to implement (they don’t even need policies!) this talk shows how you can make space in your team for difference.
- The history, philosophy and politics of the internet
Join us for an evening delving into the fascinating history of the internet. What did it's makers intend it to be? How have political groups and individual radicals used it? What, if anything, can governments and corporates do to control it? What technologies are developing to keep activists from being spied on? What is the relationship between open source and ultimate privacy? Our speakers will include Tim Jordan, Professor of Digital Cultures at Sussex University. Tim will discuss the history of hacking. He'll talk about how it developed from a few people playing around in their bedrooms, to a global political movement which the world's biggest governments struggle to keep up with. Michael Rogers, founder of the Briar Project. Michael started the Briar project to support freedom of expression, freedom of association and the right to privacy. Briar is a messaging app designed for activists, journalists, and anyone else who needs a safe, easy and robust way to communicate. Unlike traditional messaging apps, Briar doesn't rely on a central server - messages are synchronised directly between the users' devices. https://briarproject.org Kieran Gibb has been a programmer for 4 years and has spent the last year working in an open source R&D affinity called MMT. Composed of cooperative members and activists, MMT have been exploring the potential of new and existing technologies in crypto-space to encourage horizontal group collaboration. What does it mean to regain control over what data you share, who you share it with, and who gets to host it? Radical new technologies emerging from cypher-space offer the potential of the vision of data sovereignty, a dramatically different form of politics from the corporate data persistence paradigm. Why are these technologies different, what set of power relationships do they encourage and can they be described as utopian? Michael Watts and Dominic Coelho: What even is the Internet? Where does a Google search go? What could prevent an email from travelling further than 500 miles? Michael Watts is a web developer with previous lives as a primary school teacher and musician. Dominic Coelho left a job in digital advertising earlier this year to re-enter the world of web development and entrepreneurship a decade after dipping his toes in as a teenager. They will talk about some of what happens under the surface of the Internet.