Defining your Public Interest Technology Path Pre-launch Summary
Learn why we're excited for the upcoming Technologist with Social Impact digital release
Defining your Public Interest Technology Path
We don’t talk enough about the public interest technology space and the people that work within it. Their missions of bringing technology into the solutions for some of the world’s most pressing public interest problems don’t always get brought into the light. As a result, people, and more precisely, technologists who may have an interest or calling towards public interest issues, struggle to find their path or build a network within this space.
With inclusivity and accessibility, we need to build a culture where ethics, empathy, and innovation are at the heart of how technologists engage with communities, begin their careers, form their networks, and deliver meaningful impact through their work.
Technologist with Social Impact is a publication theme focusing on the individuals who take on public interest technologist roles and identities. Under the subheading Defining your Public Interest Technology Path, this upcoming resource sets out several key goals for (aspiring) public interest technologists.
Inclusivity and accessibility can only be achieved when there’s a clearer sense of what the general profile of a public interest technologist looks like in that, for most, it’s not an actual job title. By speaking to people working as public interest technologists now, we can start to develop a general profile of who gets to call themselves a public technologist. This profile is not simply about qualifications (in fact it rarely is), it’s about the person’s motivations, agility, and mindset around how you match a solution to a problem and social skills to be a bridge between all the different players in the ecosystem.
We created a Development, Network, and Action framework (DNA) to help technologists develop tangible strategies towards developing their credibility, network, and platform within the public interest space — and hopefully in the mainstream as well. This framework will be extrapolated in many different ways because our principle of ‘accessibility to all’ inherently results in a diversity of journeys, challenges, and opportunities as technologists interpret it to their own purpose.
The foundations of PubinTech and the Technologists with Social Impact project started with the Public Technology Network (source), a project to visualize the public-interest ecosystem of the private, public, academic, and independent players that are directly (or indirectly!) collaborating on key public problems. Over time, we realized that the bigger gap in public interest technology culture was that there weren’t many resources out there to help people like us actively build up a platform in this space.
To make Technologists with Social Impact: Defining your Public Interest Technology Path the resource to start addressing this issue, we contacted our 16 guests from across the globe, in a variety of roles ranging from the US Federal government employees to urban health data technologists to a mother-led educational technology founder, who took time out of their busy schedules to share their unique motivations for serving the public interest. Each of these testimonials helps make the message more tangible and therefore relatable; reinforcing the reality that there is not one single path to becoming a public interest technologist or building up your platform.
More than anything, we hope that this book spurs an inclusive and impactful conversation around who gets to call themselves a public interest technologist and motivates folks who may not be comfortable with navigating this space.
We want this resource to reach across a range of networks and communities so that technologists can build on these topics in their own careers and more environments use this knowledge as a building block to best support the confidence and opportunities of future public interest technologists.
If you’d like to stay in touch for the early May digital release of the book, subscribe to the PubinTech Newsletter and follow our social channels to get notified when it’s available for download.