The Responsible Computer Science Challenge 2023 is now accepting applications. USAID and Mozilla are supporting the conception, prototyping, and scaling of curriculum that combine multidisciplinary viewpoints with computer science education through the Responsible Computer Science Challenge.
A new generation of engineers will be trained through this approach to take into consideration the human effects of technology design and usage, to reinvent the technology ecosystems, and to create a better future. It is hoped that these learning opportunities will provide aspiring technologists the social and historical context they need to better comprehend the effects of their work and arm them with the frameworks they need to create ethical, reliable technology.
The Responsible Computer Science Challenge plans to award 10 grants from a pool of
$250,000 USD to innovation hubs and accredited institutions of higher education in Kenya
that embed ethics into computer science programmes and curricula.
The Responsible Computer Science Challenge is open to accredited institutions of higher education and
innovation hubs based in Kenya.
Institutions of Higher Education:
The Principal Investigator (PI) listed on the award application must be an individual who is
eligible to receive grants within a computer science, information science / technology, data
science, sociology, science and technology studies and allied department or programme.
The PI may work individually to execute the outlined concept if funded or with a
collaborative, cross-disciplinary team with members both inside and outside of the
institution of higher education. Such teams can include representatives from across
departments, student researchers, industry partners and independent researchers.
The Responsible Computer Science Challenge also supports the development of educational
materials or training workshops at innovation hubs that directly help students and builders
incorporate social and political perspectives in the design of new technologies. Principal
investigators from innovation hubs should be contracted staff members who are authorized
to plan and execute events for the hub’s networks.
Though cross-institutional teams are allowed (i.e. collaborations among multiple institutions
of higher education and innovation hubs), if funded, award payments will only be made to
the lead applicant organization with whom an award agreement will be signed.
Challenge submissions are judged by a panel of experts from academic, nonprofit, and for-profit
organizations working in the fields of computer science, ethics, technology, and other experts from
related domain areas. Selection criteria are designed to evaluate the merits of the proposed concept. The
review criteria are as follows:
Vision Alignment to RCS: Does the proposed concept align with RCS’ goals of educating a
new wave of engineers who bring holistic thinking—as well as diversity and equity—to the design of technology products?
Feasibility: How feasible is the outlined concept? How likely is the project team to be
successful in implementing this approach?
Impact: How will this approach prepare students to understand the impact of computing
work and equip them with frameworks to build better, more trustworthy, and less harmful
Movement Building: Does this applicant help to engage new and diverse perspectives in
the conversation about ethics and technology?
Working Open: How will you document and share your concept with local and global
audiences and community of practices? How might you engage students, professors from
other disciplines, university administrators, innovation hubs, non-profits, start-ups,
government entities, or other organizations to help shape the design of your concept?
Applications in Kenya is now open with the required Letter of Intent due December 15, 2022 Midnight EAT
and final application due January 17, 2023 Midnight EAT.