Pathways Through the Portal - Civic Tech Field Guide

Pathways Through the Portal

This section of the Civic Tech Field Guide is a living repository of the resources identified in Pathways Through the Portal, a report released September 22nd, 2020. Researchers Sasha Costanza-Chock, Diana Nucera, Berhan Taye Gameda, Matt Stempeck, and Micah Sifry interviewed 24 experts in the field, in addition to original research, to gather these resources.

As we embarked on this research, we decided to review existing efforts, develop lessons to share back, and mark signposts along possible paths forward. To that end, we conducted an extensive literature review, developed a database of 246 relevant resources (including projects, organizations, tools, conferences, fellowships, and people), and conducted in-depth interviews with 24 field leaders, including data scientists and technologists, artists and activists, researchers and policy advocates, and others deeply involved in the space. Below is that resource database. For privacy reasons, we have omitted the names of private individuals.


Our database of emerging technology resources included 46 organizations. These organizations were discovered during our initial research phase or directly suggested by one or more of the 24 field leaders we interviewed for the report.

Women Who Drone

A community of female drone pilots, enthusiasts, content creators and innovators. Fly, learn and contribute with us!

mapMarkerGrey Women Who Drone, West Street, ...

Wadhwani AI

Using the power of #AI for social good - Infectious diseases, Agriculture, Maternal & child health.


Fifty-three specific projects, initiatives, and programs leveraging emerging technologies for the public interest.


NeMO-Net is a single player iPad game where players help NASA classify coral reefs by painting 3D and 2D images of coral.

mapMarkerGrey NASA, East Nasa Parkway, Houst...

Tzina: symphony of longing

This interactive WebVR experience creates a space out of time to explore memory from an intimate and poetic perspective.

mapMarkerGrey Israel...


Forty-nine tools anyone can use to leverage emerging tech for the public good. This collection includes mainstream commercial products as well as explicitly pro-social offerings.

Purple Air

A low cost air quality sensor network providing real time measurement of air quality on a public map.

mapMarkerGrey 110 West 13800 South, Draper, ...

SamaSource SamaHub

Hiring people from the bottom of the pyramid to complete digital work - SamaHub is Samasource’s training data annotation platform used to manage the entire annotation lifecycle. The platform ensures high-quality, human-powered training data and validation for world leading AI teams.


Eight conferences suggested by leading experts as relevant to emerging tech.

Tech & Check Conference

As part of its Tech & Check Cooperative, the Reporters’ Lab is serving as a hub for automated fact-checking to connect journalists and technologists around the world. The conference gave them an opportunity to demonstrate current projects and discuss the big challenges of automation.

mapMarkerGrey Duke University, Durham, NC, U...
mapMarkerGrey 621 SW Alder St, Portland, OR ...


Key emerging tech related fellowships flagged by our interview subjects.

Ford Foundation Tech Fellow

The Ford Foundation did something unique—it hired technologists and embedded them in its grant-making teams. It was part of a foundation-wide effort to better understand the growing influence of data and technology on social justice issues.

mapMarkerGrey Ford Foundation Building, East...