The Innovation Camp 2022
The IHEID (Gender Centre)’s Innovation Camp is one of 24 Hackathons and Innovation Camps taking place across Europe in 2022 as part of the EQUALS-EU project. Each Innovation Camp is dedicated to eliminating barriers to sustainable gender equity in the ICT sector.
How do I sign up?
Any woman or minority gender who is 18+
A space to learn, have fun, challenge, and be challenged, and create new solutions for gender equity with vibrant co-creators outside your typical day-to-day network
April 28th (evening) to April 30th, 2022
Varied locations from the UN Library, to the Impact Hub, Geneva
Please click here to fill in our application form (Can’t click? We go live on 11.2.22!). We cannot wait to hear from you!
Just a brief note: If you may have any difficulty filling out this form online, and need assistance – with your informed consent – a trusted acquaintance can absolutely fill out this form on your behalf. If you will need additional assistance, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Any additional worries or thoughts? Please explore our FAQ below.
Taking into account real-world feminist practices, experts will guide participants through an exciting innovation process dedicated to creating new policy or process solutions for the digital inclusion of women and girls. In particular, led by the Graduate Institute, Geneva’s Gender Centre’s Innovation Camp will additionally focus on "Feminism and Women's Leadership in International Law and Policy" (it is worth noting that both non-experts as much as expert participants in this field are sought after! Details below). Taking place in exciting locations from the UN Library to the Impact Hub, Geneva, we privilege diversity and seek to bring together women from diverse walks of life to meet, think, and workshop new solutions for gender equity together. We are searching for participants from experts, to grass-roots activists, but overarchingly, truly and any and all women or minority genders interested in innovation and digital inclusion.
The Innovation Camp offers all participants with a unique, important opportunity to grow, learn, and create! Additionally, at the end of the Camp, a winning team will be selected and receive the opportunity to partake in a 6-month incubator programme helping them to turn the ideas they workshopped during the Camp into a real-world sustainable solution for gender equity (see more details in our FAQ below)!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Do I need to have any prior experience in feminism, women’s leadership, international law, or policy in order to participate?
Any and all women and minority genders, of any background, are welcome to apply to this Innovation Camp. As a motivating ethos, we aim for diversity in our Innovation Camp! You just need yourself and a willingness and interest to learn to participate!
This being said, to those with a background or expertise in these fields – feminism, women’s leadership, innovation, international law, policy – please apply, we need you! Disciplinary experts will be able to immerse themselves in a unique environment where they will be able to viscerally learn from those outside the boundaries of their discipline.
All told, we truly believe that intersectional, multidisciplinary perspectives are of primary importance when thinking about and creating new, innovative solutions for gender equity. As such, we believe that beyond these disciplines, anyone and everyone is an expert. Whilst everyone will have freedom to create, we will help guide you through the innovation process, so that the Innovation Camp is accessible even to those without prior expertise. This is not only a safe space, but one in which everyone has a chance to grow and be heard. Bring yourself, your voice, and your experiences - whatever they may be - to play throughout the Camp’s duration. After all, gender inequity and digital exclusion affect everyone, and so, it is only right that everyone has a chance to, finally, be heard when tackling and forging a world which is both gender equitable, and inclusive.
Furthermore, we will be releasing fun and helpful resources, as well as an open forum, prior to the Camp to answer all small and big questions about the process, and make sure everyone is feeling comfortable and well equipped when they arrive to participate in April!
Who can participate?
If you are a woman or minority gender who is 18+, please apply!
Unfortunately, whilst we love to have no bottom age limit, we must for legal reasons. However, if you are under 18 and interested in the Innovation Camp or EQUALS-EU more generally please do not hesitate to get in touch with us. We have exciting events happening throughout the year, and we would love to point you in their direction, and make sure that – as far as possible – these are accessible for you.
Why women or minority genders only?
The information society presents new possibilities for generating and distributing wealth and knowledge. Active participation of women in the information society is a matter of Justice and equality. Indeed, digital inclusion provides new pathways and novel solutions for ensuring that women and girls can participate in the entire sphere of economic, social, political and cultural life. The participation of women and girls in research and innovation is crucial for promoting digital inclusion and addressing the complex social and economic challenges facing Europe. However, innovations are often disproportionately driven by and benefit men.
Fostering gender inclusive innovation ecosystems can help cultivate a new generation of women inventors and address the economic, social and cultural roots of gender inequality that affect women’s lives from childhood to adulthood, in education, employment and social life. This requires strong inter-sectoral and multidisciplinary networks that bring together diverse stakeholders to build capacity, forge new networks, and help reshape the information society. It can engage women and girls in innovation through participatory methods and open and inclusive practices and produce safer, more secure and more sustainable information and communications technology (ICT) that is available, accessible, affordable, and usable for everyone.
And so, as this Innovation Camp will do, it is time to elevate the voices of women and minority genders.
Can you tell me a little more about what an Innovation Camp is, exactly?
This Camp is a collective space to learn, have fun, challenge, and be challenged, and create new solutions for gender equity with other women outside your typical day-to-day network.
Innovation – for us – is akin to generating ideas, and solution-building. Take the wonderful example of Witty Works. Co-founder Nadia Fischer (Winner of the Female Business Award 2020; 2020 Entrepreneur by Handelszeitung & SKO) — also one of the Camp’s expert judges! — identified that despite trainings and good intentions, language used by organisations was not inclusive, and did not meaningfully include, attract or retain diverse talent. So, she helped to build Witty Works, an A.I. enabled Software-as-a-Service that detects unconscious stereotypes in communication, suggesting to its users how to write more inclusively. Witty is an innovation tackling a real-world problem!, and just one of a myriad of examples which surround and serve us each day.
Do you apply to the Innovation Camp as a team or individual?
As an individual.
Why? To ensure that teams workshopping new solutions together are as diverse (with everyone as exposed to new perspectives and possibilities) as possible, and to make sure that every team begins on a similar playing field, we will take individual applications.
We hope that meeting a new team is an exciting prospect for you! And in any case, please note that team-building exercises form part of the Camp, and we ask that all participants follow a code of conduct to both ensure great collaborative work, and that everyone’s voices are heard and respected at all times, even if you’ve only met recently.
What do I gain from the process?
This Innovation Camp will allow participants to dive into and gain an important, indispensable and in depth experience of an innovation process, which you will be guided through by seasoned experts. As such, you will gain real-world skills and experience to take into the future. Similarly, you will have a chance to develop foundational team-working skills from a real-world feminist practice. Guided through innovation processes, the Innovation Camp will culminate with participating teams pitching their new policy or process solution to a panel of experts. As such, you will have your ideas judged and listened to by experts in their field, in a process which may eventually lead to you pitching your ideas to a panel of angel investors in the summer of 2023 (more information on this below!)!
In any case, we hope all participants will leave with new perspectives and knowledges that they will take forward into their day to day lives, gained from their team-mates, as well as through the EQUALS-EU process which will help participants unpack complex issues surrounding the gender digital divide/digital inclusion, and the key thematics of feminism, women’s leadership, and the like. We also sincerely hope you’ll leave with some new friends!
What does the winning team receive?
The Innovation Camp winners win a place – should they choose to participate – at the six-month-long incubator program running from June 2022 until the end of November 2022. The program intends to support the winners in their endeavor to get their idea further developed and hopefully result in Minimum Viable Products or completed products and services that can be the basis of new businesses that can continue to prosper after the program has ended. The program will include: Six two-hour online workshops on zoom covering topics like design thinking, universal design of products and services, how to keep your startup safe (Cybersecurity), and business development. Monthly mentoring Q&A sessions with experts – both from private and public sector. Access to the incubator program portal – containing all the teaching material and additional learning resources.
Then, participants from the winning hackathon and innovation camps’ teams who successfully complete the six-month long incubation programme will be invited to apply for a fully-funded slot in the three-week EQUALS EU professional development summer school and leadership bootcamp taking place in June 2023.
The summer school will kick off with a one week professional development bootcamp on “Transformational Leadership and Gender Equality Modelling”, then continue in Geneva, Switzerland with a one-week professional development bootcamp on “Eliminating exclusion and advancing women’s digital rights” hosted by the Graduate Institute and finally end in Valencia, Spain with a one week professional development bootcamp on “Interdisciplinary Research and Innovation Methods for Applied Computing and Information Technology” hosted by the University of Valencia. The summer school will culminate with a pitch-off in Valencia coordinated by The Forge, where the 24 scholarship recipients will present their start-ups before the Gender Equitable Investment Group.
The criteria for selection include diverse geographical representation from among the hackathon and innovation camp countries as well as a strong letter of motivation; Preference will be given to candidates who identify as women, minority genders, non-binary, transgender, or who represent a minority group.
Participants who are successfully chosen and complete the three-week summer school programme will be issued with a certificate of completion signed by GSMA, Oslo Metropolitan University, University of Valencia, the Graduate Institute and Kharkiv National University of Internal Affairs and recognized by the EQUALS Global Partnership for Gender Equality in the Digital Age.
Where is the Innovation Camp taking place?
This Innovation Camp seeks to open up exciting new places across Geneva for participants to explore and be inspired by as they learn, collaborate, and think together. As such (BAG and Covid-19 restrictions depending) the Camp is set to take place in varied locations from the UN Library, to the Impact Hub, Geneva.
What language is the Innovation Camp taking place in?
Our innovation camp will be taking place in English.
We are sadly aware that there are huge limitations to hosting our Innovation Camp in one language, and, in English and must apologise for this. We were forced to choose one language which many people in Geneva (and thereabouts) have a strong working proficiency in, noting, too, that the EQUALS-EU incubation process for winners of this Innovation Camp will be taking place in English, too.
However, we are aware of this limitation, and will try as far as possible to integrate as many solutions to this as possible in our work – be this follow-up multilingual articles to translated keynote speeches, etc. We will continue to update this page in case we will be able to offer new solutions, and we thank you for your kind understanding.
We really believe in this moment, and though we are aware of such limitations, we are constructing our Innovation Camp around diversity, accessibility and inclusivity. We will keep trying to do better, and welcome all feedback. As such, please contact us and our team (at email@example.com or through the form below) with any feedback, thoughts or questions you may have. Thank you for this understanding, energy, and time.
Please note that whilst the best efforts have been, and will be made at all times to provide accurate information, all information specified here is subject to change, and is non-binding. Organisers retain the right to edit and update information, and details, processes of the Innovation Camp and EQUALS-EU project as is necessary, at any time.