Technologists Join Development and Health Experts in the Humanitarian Technology Challenge

Conference Will Explore Innovative Technological Solutions To Humanitarian Aid Challenges

May 27, 2009


Megan Rabbitt

What: The Humanitarian Technology Challenge (HTC) conference – a joint initiative led by the United Nations Foundation and Vodafone Foundation Technology Partnership, and the IEEE – is a dynamic new endeavor bringing together development, health, and technology experts.

The conference and subsequent online collaboration process will provide an open forum for the development of technology-based solutions to challenges that humanitarians and others face working in resource-constrained environments.

The three top humanitarian challenges identified by a panel of development and aid experts are: reliable sources of electricity; data connectivity among rural district health offices; and patient ID tied to health records.

Who: Featured speakers include:

Ken Banks, Founder,
Kathy Calvin, Executive Vice President, United Nations Foundation
Christopher Fabian, Co-Director, Innovations Team, UNICEF
Richard Gowen, President, Board of Directors, IEEE Foundation
Brooke Partridge, CEO, Vital Wave Consulting
Laura Stachel, Founder, WE CARE Solar
Mark Summer, Chief Innovation Officer, Inveneo

Monday, June 1, 2009: 4:00 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.   &
Tuesday, June 2, 2009: 7:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

National Academy of Sciences
Entry by RSVP only

Technology has the potential to transform the way we address some of the world’s toughest  challenges. The rapid growth of new and lower-cost technologies creates a fertile opportunity for technological innovation in the service of humanity – but only if the innovators are aware of the difficulties at hand. This conference will help bridge the chasm that currently exists between technological innovators and humanitarian field workers, and demonstrate the ways in which simple solutions can make the difference in providing better, more effective aid to those who need it most.


To learn more about HTC and get involved, visit or email  To learn more about the United Nations Foundation & Vodafone Foundation Technology Partnership, visit, or follow Tech4Dev on Twitter.

Press Contact:
Adele Waugaman, United Nations Foundation
(o) 202-887-9040, (e)