Create an app to enhance our electoral process, help citizens engage in their communities, or help facilitate online activism.

For one weekend, PDF:Applied is bringing leading civic “hackers” together with practitioners in government and NGOs to build tools that enhance civic life through technology-driven innovation. Participants will work to build applications that address specific civic needs in keeping with this year’s “Internet is the New Political Power” PDF conference theme.

Brought to you by Personal Democracy Media, with generous support from our sponsors Microsoft, AT&T, ThoughtWorks, ChallengePost and GAFFTA, the goal this year is to produce working solutions to problems and challenges our society faces in the areas of:

  • Election Participation
  • Community Engagement
  • Advocacy / Activism

Hackathon Schedule

Saturday, June 9

10:00 - 10:30 - Registration and breakfast

10:30 - 11:30 - Welcome and project descriptions (1 minute pitches)

11:30 - 12:30 - Breakout groups for problem brainstorming

12:30 - 1:00 - Brainstorming ends, work groups are created

1:00 - 1:30 - Lunch arrives, working lunch

1:30 - 7:00 - Groups work on their ideas

7:00 - 8pm  - “Hacky Hour”, Dinner

8pm - whenever - Hacking continues

Sunday, June 10

10:00 - 10:30 - Registration and breakfast / Demos are set up

10:30 - Work commences

1:00 - 1:30 - Working lunch

1:30 - 3:00 - Work continues

3:00 - 4:30 - Presentation to judges and participants

4:30 - 5:30 - Awards

Hackathon hashtags: #PDFApplied (Also: #PdF12#opengov#opendata)

Please direct any questions or feedback to

View full rules

How to enter

Hacks must be entered by 2:30 PM Sunday, June 10 prior to the start of presentations at 3!

Every team member:

  1. Click "Accept this Challenge".
  2. Create an account or login using an existing ChallengePost account at This step ensures that all team members are recognized for judging and prizes.
  3. Be sure to read the rules.

Team leader: complete the Enter an Application form on behalf of your team by 3:00 PM Sunday, June 10. Be sure to enter all your team members on the form.

What to include:

  1. The name of your app
  2. A description of your app: explain how it addresses challenges in the areas of election participation, community engagement, or advocacy/activism
  3. At least one image/screenshot of your app

Optional items:

  1. A website where your app can be accessed 
  2. A video of your app
  3. Supporting files, etc. 

Project ideas:


Stan Freck

Stan Freck
Director of Cloud Computing, Microsoft U.S. Public Sector

Peter Hirshberg

Peter Hirshberg
Chairman, Re:imagine Group

Mike Mathieu

Mike Mathieu
Founder and Chairman, Front Seat

Marissa Shorenstein

Marissa Shorenstein
President, AT&T New York

Roy Singham

Roy Singham
Founder and Chairman, ThoughtWorks

Anne-Marie Slaughter

Anne-Marie Slaughter
Bert G. Kerstetter '66 University Professor of Politics and International Affairs at Princeton University

Judging Criteria

  • Quality of the Idea
    Including creativity and originality
  • Implementation of the Idea
    Including user experience and design
  • Potential Impact
    On the areas of election participation, community engagement, or advocacy / activism