Ford Foundation Fuels Tech For The Public Interest With X4Impact
$250,000 supports UN Sustainable Development Goals with equitable access to data for US social impact innovators
X4Impact, the data intelligence platform for social innovation announced Ford Foundation has joined industry leaders as a Founding Partner. The private foundation’s catalytic grant of $250,000 underpins the importance of providing equitable access to data and insights to support innovators creating and scaling technology for the public interest –Tech4PI.
“This financial support will facilitate the evolution of our research technology, reports and tools for social innovation in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals,” said Shelly Kurtz, Co-Founder and CMO, X4Impact. “It’s time to derive insights and knowledge from the plethora of disconnected information available to us. X4Impact is doing the deep work to organize data, research and novel tools for social innovators within communities, academia and industry.”
Led by visionary Darren Walker, the Ford Foundation is a prominent voice on advancing human achievement, promoting social justice and supporting public interest technology as a catalyst for change.
“Technology is not neutral – it can amplify or disrupt existing power dynamics and inequities. As a platform, X4Impact matches public interest technologists and civil society organizations with the information and resources they need to ensure we maximize the upsides of technology while mitigating potential harms,” says Darren Walker, president of the Ford Foundation. “This is crucial work to ensure a thriving public interest technology ecosystem can help build a better, more just technological world.”
Diversity in Tech
X4Impact now features a collection of 700 tech solutions organized by their affinity towards achievement of one or more of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. As part of their work to highlight non-traditional leaders in the underserved market of tech products and services, X4Impact has developed a variety of diversity badges including Women in Leadership, Black Leadership and Leaders of Latin American Heritage. In addition, users can now filter by organizational structure to better facilitate funding of solutions based on charitable giving or investment capital. Currently, over 1 in 4 tech solutions featured on X4Impact are structured as nonprofit organizations with a charitable purpose.
As part of its portfolio of reports and interactive tools, X4Impact has released two interactive reports focused on equality. Each report features key indicators by state as well as a detailed list of nonprofit organizations working in that issue area.
- UN SDG #5 Gender Equality
● UN SDG #10 Reduced Inequalities
New X4Impact Advisory Council Member Michelle Shevin Focused on Research
With the Ford Foundation’s catalytic philanthropic investment in X4Impact, Michelle Shevin has joined the Advisory Council alongside industry leaders.
Michelle Shevin is a researcher, public interest technologist, and Senior Program Manager of the Public Interest Technology Catalyst Fund at the Ford Foundation. She also adjuncts at NYU’s Interactive Telecommunications Program, where she teaches critical theory and futures thinking methodologies.
The X4Impact Advisory Council provides informal advisory guidance to support social innovation, sustainability and thought-leadership to advance the principles of technology for the public interest.
In addition to the free data, research and interactive tools provided by X4Impact, the company offers a suite of premium services including custom landscape analysis with database collections by impact area along with low-cost interactive software as a service.