Funding opp/CFP: Announcing the Trust Challenge, the fifth HASTAC/MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Competition

CFP: Announcing the Trust Challenge, the fifth HASTAC/MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Competition 

Full information: 

Trust, privacy, and safety are critical to learning in an open online world. How can learners exercise control over who sees and uses their data? What tools do they need to navigate, collaborate, and learn online with confidence? What solutions will foster greater civility and respect in online learning environments? How can open technical standards create more opportunities to share and collaborate online in a spirit of trust?

The fifth open, international HASTAC/MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Competition, the Trust Challenge, will award $1.2 million to institutions and organizations that tackle these questions in real-life learning contexts. The Trust Challenge will fund successful collaborations or “laboratories” that create scalable, innovative, and transformative exemplars of connected learning that bridge technological solutions with complex social considerations of trust.

Awards: $10,000 to $150,000 year-long development grants; $1.2 million will be awarded in total.

Timeline: Applications accepted September 3 to November 3, 2014. Final applications are due Monday, November 3, 2014 at 5pm PST/ 8pm EST.

Who can participate:

Successful proposals will include youth-serving organizations and institutions and institutions of higher learning anywhere in the world where challenges to trust in connected learning environments can be identified and addressed.

Teams must include

  • institutional/organizational stakeholders and administrators that can provide and direct project objectives, inform design and implementation, and increase opportunities for scalability.
Additionally, teams might also include
  • technologists, web developers, app developers, badge system designers, etc. that can design, build and implement the proposed digital solution; and
  • researchers, educators, learning experts, policy advisors, legal counsel, etc. that can give careful consideration to complex social and institutional/organizational considerations around trust and learning.

Connect with the Trust Challenge to get the latest news and notifications

Listserv: To receive notifications about the Trust Challenge, including reminders when the application opens, send a message to with “subscribe” in the subject line.


Twitter: and #dmltrust



Watch the Webinar Series “Building Trust in Connected Learning Environments” (a HASTAC/ collaboration)

Why Trust Matters in Connected Learning Environments

July 8, 11am PST/2pm EST (archived recording available)

What do we mean by "trust" in relation to connected learning? Why we need to create connected learning environments that protect safety & privacy without compromising the ability to learn.


Cathy Casserly - Former CEO of Creative Commons, now a part-time Fellow at the Aspen Institute Communications & Society Program

David Preston - English teacher at Righetti High School

Sheryl Grant - Director of Social Networking, HASTAC


Trust Challenges Across Connected Learning Environments

July 15, 11am PST/2pm EST

How trust is modeled in collaborative connected learning environments, and how we tackle serious issues--such as digital literacy and equity--so that people can take full advantage of learning opportunities.


Cathy Lewis-Long - Founding Executive Director of The Sprout Fund in Pittsburgh

Nichole Pinkard - Co-Founder of the Digital Youth Network, and Co-Founder of YOUmedia Chicago

Carla Casilli - Director of Design + Practice at the Badge Alliance

Barry Joseph - Associate Director for Digital Learning at the American Museum of Natural History

Doug Belshaw - Project lead for the Web Literacy Standard at the Mozilla Foundation

Sheryl Grant - Director of Social Networking, HASTAC


Social-Emotional Literacies and Digital Citizenship Best Practices

July 22, 11am PST/2pm EST

How to encourage multi-directional trust (from platforms to people) and empower learners of all ages to use learning resources confidently, effectively & safely.


Anne Collier - Youth/tech news blogger, and Editor of

Janelle Bence - Educator at New Tech High @ Coppell in Dallas

Jessie Daniels - Professor at the City University of New York (CUNY), and FemTechNet supporter

Anna Smith - Educational researcher, teacher educator & teacher; founder of #literacies chat on Twitter

Sheryl Grant - Director of Social Networking, HASTAC


Higher Education as a Trusted Environment for Learning

July 29, 11am PST/2pm EST

Trust in research, public scholarship, pedagogy and distributed learning environments. How are higher education institutions already embracing principles for creating safe, optimized and rewarding learning?


Jonathan Worth - Creator of the massive, open Photography & Narrative (#Phonar) course, and a renowned British portrait photographer

Audrey Watters - Technology and education journalist, and self-described "rabble-rouser & recovering academic"

Howard Rheingold - Author, virtual community expert, and self-described "online instigator & expert learner"

Sheryl Grant - Director of Social Networking, HASTAC

Tags: collaboration, connected, digital, funding, grant, learning, literacy, online, privacy, safety, More…technology, tools, trust

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