We believe in using tech for good.

Hack4Impact believes in technology’s huge potential to empower activists and humanitarians to create lasting and impactful social change. We work to foster the wider adoption of software as a tool for social good.

Our Mission

Hack4Impact exists for both nonprofits and students. We connect student software developers with nonprofits and other socially responsible businesses to develop powerful new tools for social change. This enables nonprofits to further their mission and better engage their clients. We are committed to increasing awareness of technology’s potential for good. We host speaker events and develop workshops for students, open to the entire university community.

We envision a tech industry that emphasizes social impact as a core tenet of success. We hope to see similar Hack4Impact-type chapters opening up across the country both in academic institutions and professional communities. We envision more open-source projects, more university courses, and more academic research being poured into the intersection between social impact and software engineering. In addition, we envision Hack4Impact to be a space for socially-responsible organizations to turn to for resources and education.

Executive Board

Hack4Impact is led by an executive board of six who are responsible for managing the organization’s administrative and logistical needs. In addition to the executive board’s leadership, other members serve as project managers or technical leads for individual projects.

See all Hack4Impact members →

Our Values

Go for it.

Sometimes, the only way to learn if something works is to run with it. If we waited until our plans were perfect, we would never get anywhere. Organizational roles do not determine the value of an idea: great ideas can come from anyone and anywhere. We grow because we are always trying something new.

Learn what you don’t know.

There is a lot to learn. In order to improve the world, we need to know about it. We recognize that we have barely scratched the surface of what is out there. We are humble about our gaps in knowledge, and are willing to answer questions with “I don’t know.” We are hungry learners, and we teach each other whenever possible.

Be open-minded.

Our process depends on openness to different people, topics, and perspectives. We embrace difference and work against intolerance to foster an inclusive environment. Our goal is to expose our members to the vast opportunities and daunting challenges in our work.

Be critical.

Criticism helps us grow. We are critical about the world we live in, our organization, and ourselves. Our community has an obligation to question the assumptions and decisions made by those around it. Our leaders constantly strive to improve our model by assessing our impact. Our members proactively ask for feedback and are forthcoming with feedback for others.

Engage in your community.

Our community makes us special. We are a group of friends who care deeply about our organization and each other. The strength of our community comes from the contributions of its members. We welcome new members with warmth, and we make the effort to know each other beyond superficial details.

Be dependable.

As an organization, we trust every single member to hold themselves and others accountable. We know that our performance affects others. If we all are engaged and follow through on our commitments, then we can be confident that others have our backs.

Develop with care.

We build with others in mind. Empathy and compassion are crucial to serving our partner organizations and members. When we embark on projects, we work to deeply understand the people who we are helping. We write software that meets the highest standards of development. When we deliver our final products, we ensure that others can understand how to use our code and build on it.

Go beyond technology.

Technology is only one tool we use in our greater mission for social impact. It is easy to fall into the trap of believing technology can solve all problems. We know that technology alone is not enough. We learn from, work with, and are inspired by other organizations and individuals who are tackling social problems using a multitude of tools.

Institutional Affiliations

Hack4Impact is supported by the Wharton Social Impact Initiative and the Engineering Student Activities Council at the University of Pennsylvania.

Similar organizations

Hack4Impact is unique, but our values certainly aren’t. We’re one of dozens of university clubs, hackathons, and nonprofits focusing on using technology for social good. Here are just a few.