Who can benefit from this study?
Civic Tech initiatives
Organisation responsible for case study:
iCampus – A space focusing on technology, accountability and social change
Main Project Location: Monrovia
Project country/countries: Liberia
Project dates: 2016 –
Last updated: 23 March 2022
Brief overview of the Case Study
iCampus is Liberia’s first multi-disciplinary, innovation and community space for change-makers focusing on the intersection of technology, accountability and social change. The establishment of iCampus was fostered by Accountability Lab Liberia and iLab Liberia as part of a USAID Liberia Accountability and Voice Initiative program that tends to inform decisions around policy reform through advocacy.
As Liberia strives to its place in the global community of information communication technology, iCampus remains an essential catalyst required to speed up the nation’s march towards the global innovation hall of fame.
The challenge or problem
More than 60% of Liberia’s population is the youth, but the youth feel disenfranchised to participate and solve collective, social challenges. The country lacks training resources and facilities for the youth, internet services and supply – all of which could hinder innovation and growth of ideas. Lack of conducive enabling environment for civic tech. African countries such as Liberia face issues such a shrinking democracy in terms of freedoms, transparency, media, governance, etc.
The solution that was implemented
It has influenced a new generation of engaged youths, working together for the change they want to see and enhanced new initiatives led by youths pushing for change.
It has promoted new ways of learning and teaching the kind of skills young Liberians need such as knowledge (computer labs), digital journalism, accountability programs.
iCampus innovative community presents an opportunity for local professionals to incubate knowledge and build a creative ecosystem that institutionalizes collaboration.
iCampus aspires to serve as a gathering point for networking, collaboration, learning and innovation for change-makers, helping them to be more effective and have a (collective) impact.
The space provides an avenue where professionals can build a connection by sharing workplaces, attending public events, creating spaces to smartly experiment, learn and improve together. Moreover, the community is noted for building partnership by opening networking avenues through events, including panel events, ted talks, workshops, conferences, hackathons, book/report launches, brown bag launches, and other social launches.
Which actors, resources, conditions, tools, etc. were required?
Empowering locals to push for social accountability from the top. Need to have a buy-in or penetration in terms of government receptivity to civic tech
What results were achieved?
Lessons and recommendations
There is a need to build an ecosystem within the civic tech space and diverse voices in these engagements
Civic Techies should build and leverage on pre-existing projects and infrastructure
Case study images