Open Gov Hack Night

Chicago's weekly event to build, share, and learn about civic tech.

April 21: American Civil Liberties Union of Illinois

Come join a group of passionate folks working at the intersection of open government, cities, and technology. This is an evening of civic tech building, sharing, learning and networking.

The Open Gov Hack Night is for those who want to:

  • learn about civic tech, open data and open government
  • get work done on civic projects
  • start a new project, or find one to join (non-coders very welcome!)
  • bounce ideas and get help from tech and gov experts

There's always food, too!


6:00 pm
Eating and socializing
6:15 pm
Welcome, introductions
6:30 pm
6:40 pm
Weekly presentation
7:15 pm
Highlight current civic tech projects
7:30 pm
Break into groups and hack

But I'm not a techie!

That's ok! We encourage non-technical folks to pair up and learn from our community's designers and developers. Often times, the best civic projects come from teams with a diverse background.

Remember, there's more to making a great app than just coding.

This video from The Grid on Gaper's Block will give you a sense of what to expect.


Keep track of and open source projects from Chicago's civic tech community. Feel free to submit your own!

Breakout groups

Every week, we have topic-specific working groups led by facilitators to guide conversations, answer questions, and build teams for civic apps.


Browse data portals, APIs, tools, tutorials and free developer infrastructure for making civic apps in Chicago.

Join the discussion

Between hack nights, we use Google Groups and the #chihacknight hashtag on Twitter for coordinating and collaborating on civic technology projects in Chicago.

Subscribe to event updates

Every week, we send out an email and update this site to preview the next hack night.

Email list RSS feed

Leadership & contact

The Open Gov Hack Night is organized by Derek Eder, Christopher Whitaker and (formerly) Juan-Pablo Velez.

Every 4 weeks, we hold an open Leadership Council Meeting to discuss new ideas and ways to make the hack night better.

Got questions about the event or have a project to present? Email Derek!


The Open Gov Hack Night is organized by members of Open City and hosted at Braintree.


Our awesome sponsors provide food every week.

Bring the hack night to your city

Hack nights anchor and grow volunteer civic hacking communities while avoiding 'hackathon fatigue'. To learn how to organize one in your city, see the Code for America blog.

Friends have forked the hack night in many places: