Week 2 Closes and Week 3 Begins!

H4D teams are quickly learning just how important "beneficiary discovery" is to their success - and just how hard it can be. Teams have to develop exceptional information elicitations skills to get to the, "real-real" from many beneficiaries who see the problem in different ways. Even within the teams, members can hear beneficiary responses in different ways, too. It's challenging and educational at the same time.

As our teams move through their process - framing the hypothesis, testing the hypothesis, and iterating or pivoting, they begin to see how the process is the glue that keeps their thoughts together. Working toward a, "Minimum Viable Product" requires clarity, focus, and the ability to quickly learn and change when necessary. 

This week our teams visited Ft. Meade, spoke to more end-users and decisionmakers, and got out of the building. Nobody solved a real national security problem sitting at a desk.

Join us tonight, and every Monday @6:30pm as we live-stream our classes on Twitter @H4DGUSSP and on Facebook Live @Hacking4DefenseGeorgetown. See for yourself the amzing work these teams are doing.

Matt & Chris

Hacking for Defense Kicks Off!

On January 11, 2017, four teams of exceptionally talented graduate students from Georgetown took the plunge into our new H4D class. There are 21 students, but over 100 people were in the classroom. Problem sponsors, mentors, military liaisons, corporate partners, and investors filled the room to watch our student teams present for the first time.

It was a whirlwind of questions about hypotheses, experiments, results, and learning. For the first time, students got a taste of "relentlessly direct" feedback - something they don't normally find in a classroom. They all survived, and this week should see improvements in their Mission Model Canvases.

We better.

Rich customer discovery drives the success of this educational endeavor. By now, student teams are knee-deep in those interviews. Check back next week to see how our teams fared.

Or, watch the classes live at 6:30pm on Mondays on Twitter @H4DGHSSP and on Facebook on our Hacking4DefenseGeorgetown page.

Until next time...

Chris & Matt


H4D Teams and Problem Sets Selected!

It's been a fast and furious 2 1/2 months here at Georgetown University's Security Studies Program (SSP). In that time, we guerilla marketed H4D across campus, got students to three different informations sessions, got some of the national security industry's top companies to partner with us, got exceptionally talented Research Assistants, Military Liaisons, Corporate Partners, Venture Capitalists, and Mentors to commit to help, and convinced everyone that this was a good idea.

Our inaugural class has four high-quality teams working on really hard problems, but this semester-long process will give them tools to solve any problem in any organization and/or start a business around a service or product that has rigorous customer validation supporting it.

We kick off on WEDNESDAY January 11, 2017 and then come together every Monday, thereafter (except for holidays). We welcome our mentors, corporate partners, military liaisons, problem sponsors, venture capitalists, the media, and all interested parties to join us each week.

Buckle up!

Chris & Matt