27-29th May 2024
Eric Nitschke is a social entrepreneur building open hardware, firmware, software, and educational resources needed to build a more resilient and inclusive Internet. Nitschke & his team at Wakoma won the 2021 IEEE Connecting the Unconnected Challenge for their work on the nimble, an open source DIY rapidly deployable mesh network that operates without access to the internet. In 2018 Nitschke co-founded what has become the largest community network in South Africa, and is now working to jumpstart and scale locally-focused telecommunication operators around the world to provide internet and offline services where one-size-fits-all national operators have fallen short.
Nitschke previously helped design and implement mobile, web, geospatial, and IoT tools and trainings in the WASH sector, primarily in Eastern and Southern Africa and Latin America.
Currently residing near Prague, Czech Republic, Nitschke is a member of Global Innovation Gathering (GIG), a member of the 2023 IEEE CTU Selection Committee, and technical advisor to several startups and NGOs.