Freedom House IGF Incubator Challenge

05 November 2012 - A Pre-event on Baku,Azerbaijan


Organizing entity: Freedom House

The public is welcome to attend the final selection round of the Freedom House-sponsored competition for funding Internet freedom projects. Seven presenters will pitch their innovative project ideas to a panel of judges, who will select at least two projects to receive $15,000 in funding.

Finalists represent civil society, activists, academia and advocacy networks from seven different countries. Their projects aim to promote, protect and advocate for Internet freedoms at the national and regional levels. They were selected as finalists from more than 20 entries based on their proposals and ranking in a social media contest. First, an online voting contest narrowed down the entries to the top ten vote-getters. Second, a review committee evaluated the project proposals and chose seven with the highest merit to invite to Azerbaijan to participate in the Freedom House IGF delegation. The added benefit of holding the third and final round of the Challenge in conjunction with the IGF is it affords the finalists the opportunity to publicize the Internet freedom issues in their countries—along with their ideas about how to address them—before a prime audience.

The confirmed presenters are:

  • Internet Freedom - Your Right, My Right
    Digital security trainings customized for LGBT groups in Uganda
  • Myanmar Internet Freedom Forum
    Convene a national multistakeholder forum to discuss Internet Freedom and build a watchdog network to monitor online censorship
  • VIRTUS Linus
    Linux-based operating system supported by secure VPN servers for Syrian activists
  • Advocacy and Awareness raising on internet freedom in South Sudan
    Propose a constitutional provision guaranteeing Internet freedoms
  • BUILD E-DEMOCRACY // Play & learn action
    An educational online game for Internet users in Eastern Europe

The panel of judges will have wide representation of geographic regions and areas of expertise, and the judges will engage presenters on the issues addressed by the projects.

The invited judges are:

Danilo Bakovic, Internet Freedom Project Director, Freedom House, Washington, DC
Jessica Colaço, Lead Researcher, *iHub_Research, Nairobi, Kenya
Khaled Koubaa, Policy Manager North Africa, Google, Inc., Tunis, Tunisia
Enda Nasution, Blogger,, Bandung Area (West Java), Indonesia


Freedom House hopes the IGF Incubator Challenge and its dramatic finale will help generate excitement in the media, civil society and donor community, not only for these innovative projects, but also for the wider Internet freedom issues addressed by the projects.