15 - 31 May 2021, online in Helsinki


A hackathon for imagining alternative futures for Finnish society. 🔮️










The Feminist Futures Helsinki hackathon 2021 is not an exclusive space for programmers and hackers - and it is not an exclusive space for women. This is an inclusive space for anyone and everyone who wants to take part in shaping the future of Finnish society. A future where power is challenged (and redistributed), where multiple forms and sources of knowledge are recognised, and where culture is based on inclusion rather than exclusion. 

The past year has highlighted social and economic divides. Our hackathon challenges the notion that complex societal issues can be fixed by technology alone. Feminism asks us to put a critical eye on institutionalized power, to embrace emotion, and to think beyond binary structures.

When we say “Feminist Futures” we are talking about anti-racist, decolonial, accessible, equitable, and just futures for people of all genders and all backgrounds. Our definition of feminism begins with the belief in and the advocacy of the political, social and economic equality of all people.




Inspiring Tracks & Projects




INCLUSIVE FUTURES

Feminist narratives of the future of surrogacy

(Naisasialiitto Unioni)


How can we analyse analysing power dynamics in exploitative surrogacy? How can we challenging the patriarchal and capitalist concept of the family to imagine feminist futures?

Improving Immigration

(Reform Migri)


Analysis and recommendations for more inclusive and non-discriminatory immigration policies in Finland.

Enabling age-inclusive participatroy communities

(City of Helsinki)


Challenging traditional views of labour, increasing the autonomy of seniors, building and nurturing inclusive communities, and encouraging intergenerational connections.  
See the project descriptions here ︎︎︎




WELL-BEING FUTURES

Dreaming of a feminist and anti-racist Internet in Finland

(Fem-R)


The understanding of the Feminist principles of the internet in Finland is very limited. How might we facilitate interdisciplinary conversations in safer spaces with tools to manage online violence? 

Supporting victims of gender based digital violence

(Turv@verkko, Naisten Linja)


How might Turv@verkko services help people experience online violence? How might these services become more visible to reach gender and sexual minorities, and minoritized groups?

Rest is Resistance: Sustainable Activism

(Fem-R)


How might we encourage the idea of self-care Exploring rest as a fundamental pillar to sustain activism. 


See the project descriptions here ︎︎︎





URBAN FUTURES

Cities built for the people

(FEMMA Planning)


Creative methods for active community participation for inclusivity in urban planning.

Inclusive Lapinlahti

(Lapinlahden Lähde)


Tools and methods for understanding the context and resourcs of Lapinlahti. 


Loneliness-free cities

(FEMMA Planning)

Coming soon.

See the project descriptions here ︎︎︎




ECO-JUSTICE FUTURES

Intersectional Climate Movement

(Climate Move)


Climate crisis is not only about meteorological mess. Climate crisis is also about the cultural climate of our everyday lives.

Strengthening Sámi Allyship

(Ellos Deatnu / Snowchange)


Coming soon.


Spaces for Dialogue for Climate Change

(Ellos Deatnu / Snowchange)


How might we flip the disservice done to the Sámi by the academic community? How might Sámi community preserve the oral and visual tradition of passing knowledge in their own terms?

See the project descriptions here ︎︎︎

Where did this idea come from?

Several of the organisers in the hackathon have been engaged with conversations around social justice and data feminism; in part through the Crisis Interrogatives collective and the Critical AI and Data Justice in Society course offered at Aalto University in spring 2021. It was in these spaces that we also started engaging with Catherine D’Ignazio, American author, artist, software developer, hackathon organiser, professor, and all-around fantastic human. Catherine co-authored the book Data Feminism with Lauren Klein, and is also one of the organisers of Our Feminist Futures, our sister hackathon in the US organised by a group of researchers at MIT. When we saw that they were organising this hackathon, we were instantly intrigued. However, as you had to be a US resident, we could not participate. This is when Nitin Sawhney suggested we organise a hackathon here in Helsinki. We were immediately inspired, quickly got in touch with the team at MIT, and before long we had brought together a team to organise the Feminist Futures Helsinki hackathon.



Something that also made this an extra interesting project to do exactly here in Finland is the fact that there is a very established innovation scene with various events and companies attracting a lot of international attention. We would argue, however, that those spaces are still very exclusive in nature, and are not always welcoming to a broader range of people and experiences. There is also a tendency to try to fix big societal struggles with apps or other forms of technology, but we wanted to challenge this approach (#techwontbuildit), and instead focus on long term perspectives. We have a lot of participants who have never participated in a hackathon before, and who were even a bit sceptical about the concept, but we hope we’ve been able to show them that the format can actually facilitate a lot more than what we’re used to seeing in the Silicon Valley type of hackathons. For example, this hackathon runs for 2,5 weeks to allow more time for people with work and care responsibilities. We have also prioritised getting the participants to listen to a plurality of voices by having different mentors.



Public
Events

Click here to find a full list of our past events and access session recordings.




“Nothing about us, without us”


Find our community guidelines here. (PDF)
We believe that those impacted by a design should be leading the design process - that’s why we partner with grassroots and community organisations for this hackathon. We hope to engage people whose lives are affected by the topics of the hackathon and who are often underrepresented in decision making.


We support political, social, and economic equality; diversity and inclusion; collaboration over competition. 📢

The Feminist Futures Helsinki hackathon initiative is supported by a grant from the School of Science Diversity and Inclusivity Fund at Aalto University.





Frequently Asked Questions





The Feminist Futures Helsinki hackathon 2021 is not an exclusive space for programmers and hackers - and it is not an exclusive space for women. This is an inclusive space for anyone and everyone who wants to take part in shaping the future of Finnish society. A future where power is challenged (and redistributed), where multiple forms and sources of knowledge are recognised, and where culture is based on inclusion rather than exclusion.

The past year has highlighted social and economic divides. Our hackathon challenges the notion that complex societal issues can be fixed by technology alone. Feminism asks us to put a critical eye on institutionalized power, to embrace emotion, and to think beyond binary structures.



How we define feminism?  ︎︎︎

When we say “Feminist Futures” we are talking about anti-racist, decolonial, accessible, equitable, and just futures for people of all genders and all backgrounds. Our definition of feminism begins with the belief in and the advocacy of the political, social and economic equality of all people.


What is a hackathon?  ︎︎︎


A hackathon is an event in which a large group of people come together to collaborate, ideate, learn, prototype and play. It started out as being something that was created for computer programmers and which lasted a weekend, but the hackathon scene is expanding, and our hackathon is for everyone — not just programmers. Oh, and it lasts 2.5 weeks.


What happens after the hackathon?  ︎︎︎

We value collaboration over competition, so we will not be announcing any winners of the hackathon. We also want to encourage long term impact, which is why we are working on raising funds to support the teams who wish to continue working on their projects after the hackathon. We welcome potential sponsors to get in touch if they wish to hear more about these opportunities.

Who is organising the hackathon?  ︎︎︎

This team originated from the intersection of the Crisis Interrogatives Transdisciplinary Research Collective and the Critical AI & Data Justice in Society course at Aalto. We are a team with diverse experience in hackathon facilitation, communication, design, community organising, and experience in and connection with a large number of local grassroots organisations. We are passionate about collaboration and empowerment, and are eager to foster creative spaces here in Finland.