Hack the Change – 48 hours advancing the rule of law

Hack the Change – 48 hours advancing the rule of law
Legal and tech worlds collided over the weekend (11-13 November) for our inaugural  “Rule of Law Hackathon” – bringing together lawyers, coders and human rights activists to find a solution to a big problem: Securing equal rights for LGBT* people globally.

This hackathon was enabled by LexisNexisUK and supported by Amazon Web Services. Over a 48-hour period, 40 hackers worked in five teams to tirelessly and creatively solve a crucial challenge with help from over 40 support staff. The event was kicked off by our Hack the Change Lead, Amy Carton setting up the Hackers for a life changing weekend, not only for them, but for the LGBT* community worldwide.

Amy Carton presenting to the hackers

The Challenge

The challenge was to plug the technology gap for the Human Dignity Trust, a charity which focusses on decriminalising homosexuality globally; to accelerate their success rate in defending LGBT* rights globally. Kapil Gupta & Richie Maitland (pictured below) from the Trust set out the full scope of the challenge for the hackers. LexisNexis UK flew in leading human rights activist Rosanna Flamer-Caldera of Equal Ground for the event, to gain her insights from the real world challenges in Sri Lanka. Also recognising that it is crucial to have support from activists like this in order for any solution to get traction in the real world.

Richie Maitland and Kapil Gupta presenting the challenge

Weekend Work

From 6pm on Friday to 6pm on Sunday, the hackers formed themselves into 5 teams and together ideated, refined, coded, tested and developed their solutions to this critical challenge. Armed with a mission, unlimited cloud services from AWS, unlimited legal help from Hogan Lovells, Osborne Clarke and Freshfields, 48-hour support from The Human Dignity Trust and LexisNexis, the teams hacked and hacked and hacked.  View some of the Twitter commentary here.

Capturing the weekend

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About the author:
Mark is one of the Dispute Resolution blog’s technical editors. He qualified as a lawyer in Australia and worked in private practice before joining LexisNexis. In addition to contributing to the Dispute Resolution blog, he also writes for a number of LexisNexis blogs, including the Future of Law blog.