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20NTC Session Proposal

Open Source Design with OSS Humanitarian tech tools

Submitted by: Eriol Fox | Ushahidi


Design for good is a popular topic and we know from experience that designers far and wide want to use their skills  for projects that do good in the world. However, Open Source design has hurdles to leap before it could become fully adopted by the global design community. Exploitative ‘work for free attitudes’, workflows and design functions/roles, software that doesn’t allow collaborative versioning and how the open source community is over represented by those with privilege, access and ability. 

Ushahidi builds humanitarian tools, remotely, for some of the most marginalised people across the globe. To tackle these problems we’ve created a workshop methodology/framework using our crisis communication tool TenFour with partners Designit and Adobe to be adopted by organisations in need of design support. Together, we’re solving the problems with how open source design can work by engaging through meaningful technology that makes a difference in the world.

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand the main challenges facing designers/creatives globally in the open source software community.
  • Contribute issues that their organisations are facing in regard to design needs. Add issues to their open design repo
  • How the methodology has been used to date and how to adapt to suit their organisation to best engage designers

Target Audience

Those interested in Open Source Software, Charities that need design support, Designers, Technologists, Product Managers, Creatives.