Knight Blog

The blog of the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation

Code for America's recruits for civic startup accelerator

April 17, 2012, 10:43 a.m., Posted by Abhi Nemani

Knight Foundation currently supports Code for America as part of its Technology for Engagement Initiative, which funds projects that help communities use technology to take action. Here, Abhi Nemani, director of strategy and communications at Code for America, blogs about the launch of the organization's new startup accelerator.

Code for America is now accepting applications for its new civic startup accelerator. The accelerator is designed to disrupt the massive $140 billion government IT market and provide new and better services to citizens.

This first-of-its-kind, four-month program will "turbo-charge" select civic startups by providing them a springboard to amplify market awareness of their product, additional funding, business mentoring specific to the “government 2.0” space, and introductions to a broad network of civic leaders and potential investors. Code for America has recruited experienced telecommunications and consumer software entrepreneur Ron Bouganim as program director. 

Applications will be accepted until June 1 at codeforamerica.org/accelerator

The accelerator has an esteemed list of mentors and advisors including CTO of the United States Aneesh Chopra, Caterina Fake, co-founder of Flickr and Pinwheel, Peter Schwartz, author and founder of the Global Business Network, and Ron Conway, angel investor and partner at SV Angel. (Read the full list.)

How the accelerator works:

•   Three to five companies will be selected to participate in the program

•   The program will run for four months, beginning Aug. 1, 2012

•   Each team will be granted $25,000 in funding as well as access to Code for America office space for the term

•   Teams will receive guidance from high-profile civic and industry mentors and advisors

•   Teams can reside anywhere in the country, but will gather in San Francisco one week a month for “retreats” featuring intensive training and networking

To read more about the startup accelerator, read Code for America’s blog post about its launch.