Interview: Johan Linåker, Founder of OpenHack

The upcoming OpenHack in Uppsala is closing in - and we can't wait! In the meantime, we caught up with OpenHack's founder Johan Linåker to ask a few questions about the concept and vision of the hack, as well as the Uppsala "JobTech"-theme. Interview below:

 Johan Linåker, Founder of OpenHack.

Johan Linåker, Founder of OpenHack.

Hi Johan! Why did you start OpenHack?

- When I joined Engineers Without Borders, there was no natural way for me to use my core skills as a software developer to contribute to humanitarian aid. By arranging a hackathon, we could bring techies like me together with humanitarian aid organizations, and collaborate on solving real world challenges with digital innovations. By also making the solutions open source, the ideas and prototypes that come out of the hackathon can be developed further by anyone who wishes, with the goals of gaining a bigger impact and wider reach.

Why would you say Open Source is so important?

- Open source software is free for anyone to use, modify, and redistribute. Due to this openness, the software can spread and involve people with a global reach, including all possible end-users, and also other developers, subject matter experts, and organizations.

Can you tell us how the theme JOBTECH was decided on?

- Gaining a job is an important part in the integration process and key for any newly arrived to entering and establishing themselves in society. Tech and digital solutions can help ease this process, not only for newly arrived but also for jobseekers in general. If we can help to match jobseekers and employers in a more efficient manner, as well as present them with the right opportunities, then we can make a difference for society as a whole!