Announcing the 2016 Healthy Public Challenge Winners!

Civic Hall Labs and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation are pleased to announce the winners of the 2016 Healthy Public Challenge!

The Challenge kicked off on August 1, inviting entrepreneurs, designers, developers, academics, and the public at large to consider how to leverage technology to create a healthier public. We received an incredibly diverse group of submissions. Winning civic innovations range from utilizing mobile apps to data visualization to digital literacy. Issues areas addressed by challenge projects include tenant rights organizing, combating gender-based violence, increasing civic participation, and challenging police misconduct.

We’re thrilled to share that the judges have selected the following ten teams to move on to the next phase of the Challenge:

Hollaback! - HeartMob

HeartMob is the innovative tech solution to online harassment: empowering bystanders to rebuild fragmented online communities from the inside out.

Article 25

Article 25 will launch a real-time Twitter sentiment visualization of people affected by HIV/AIDS on World AIDS Day to improve community dialogue and support structures between at-risk young people and the established HIV community in Brooklyn. Afterwards, they will transform data into an advocacy tool to strengthen city HIV policies.

Heat Seek

Heat Seek is providing better, more user-friendly data to tenant organizers and tenant attorneys in order to support their efforts to identify and assist tenants at risk of harassment and forced displacement.


Looped offers a hybrid mobile solution for caregivers to manage their information and caregiving responsibilities and coordinate with family members involved in care. It also connects users with other caregivers in the community in order to build their own support networks, for both practical and social or emotional support.

The Good Men Project & ThinkPlay Partners

The partnership with and ThinkPlay Partners will engage a global dialogue on expanding men's emotional literacy to increase all people's social connectivity and longevity. This initiative is designed to address our national epidemic of social isolation (44 million adults age 45+ are chronically lonely, AARP 2010), violence and deteriorating social cohesion.

NYC Councilmatic

Councilmatic will run its public comment program, bringing together neighborhood groups with local government entities to discuss community health issues. A special homepage section will showcase upcoming public health events in NYC City Council, with ability to subscribe to free email updates and a two-way SMS chat program.

The toolkit will arm tenants with the knowledge and infrastructure to setup their own tenant associations, drawing from the collective knowledge and experience of community organizations. Through research, they will identify the challenges of developing self-sustaining tenant associations and ideate on opportunities to address those barriers.

Rockaway Waterfront Alliance

Leading out of lessons learned from Hurricane Sandy, First Wave is an intergenerational program that empowers local tech-savvy youth to teach older adults and immigrants about social-media, the internet and cell technology to reduce social isolation of our vulnerable populations during emergencies and to increase community and social interaction.

Reported PD

Reported PD is an app that helps underserved populations easily capture details about police behavior and submits interaction details to the local Civilian Complaint Review Board for official processing. It also fosters community engagement by connecting users and sharing local stories.

Participatory Budgeting Project

Open data promises a revolution in democracy, but usually only wonks and technologists can truly harness this wealth of information. Participatory Budgeting Project will aggregate and demystify civic data so ordinary people can assess the data-driven needs of a community, and drive equitable spending of spend public money toward health-promoting investments.


Each winning team will participate in a six month advisory period, which includes mentorship from the Civic Hall Labs Experts in Residence. Each team will also receive $10,000 to further build their solutions into viable prototypes that can make real impact in the health of the public.

Visit the challenge website and follow us on Twitter (@civichalllabs) to learn more about the winning teams and next phase of the 2016 Healthy Public Challenge!