We transform conflict in the digital age.

WHAT WE DO

We combine peacebuilding, participation and technology to identify and address emergent challenges to peace. We have demonstrated that our approach and methodologies work to address fractures in societies experiencing active violent conflict such as Syria, in post-conflict societies such as Colombia, and in societies where new divisions are emerging such as the USA.

Policy & Research

We develop think-pieces, conduct research and offer trainings to explore opportunities to use digital technologies for peace and emergent challenges to peace related to digital technology.

Supporting Innovators

We use digital technologies to build peace: we support peace innovators across the globe, working with local organisations to design and implement technology interventions to peacebuilding processes.

Addressing Digital Conflict

We transform conflicts that happen in digital spaces: we conduct research and interventions to address polarization on social and digital media in contexts across the globe.

Community of Practice

We foster a community of practice that thinks critically about conflict in the digital age through the annual convening of Build Peace, the leading global conference on peacebuilding, technology and the creative arts.

Sign up to our community of practice newsletter to hear about events and trainings on peacetech, conflict in the digital age, emergent challenges to peace and more.

OUR VALUES
  • At Build Up, we are honest, open and vulnerable.

    We’re not experts, we value knowledge, we engage in cross and trans disciplinary thinking. We give space to learn, encouragement to grow, and sometimes to err. We work with and support ourselves and others as whole people. We place stewardship, respect, love, peace and non-violence at the heart of our work. And our style is a bit punk: non-hierarchical, diverse and a little bit irreverent.

WHO WE ARE

Build Up is a non-profit with a global team. Our core team brings together diverse skills: mediation, negotiation, facilitation, peacebuilding, marketing, media, filmmaking, design, coding, data analysis, social media, metal-work, graphic recording and more.
Uploaded image

Michaela Ledesma

Director + Co-founder
Michaela has more than 16 years of experience supporting the design and implementation of innovative, locally-owned peacebuilding initiatives. A trained mediator, she is passionate about creating & facilitating processes that enable diverse groups to collaborate towards positive change.
Uploaded image

Helena Puig Larrauri

Director + Co-founder
Helena has over a decade of experience in peacebuilding, focusing on innovation design. She has worked in Sudan, South Sudan, Central African Republic, Guinea-Bissau, Libya, Cyprus, Myanmar, Nepal, Somalia and Iraq. Helena often writes and speaks about peacebuilding, polarisation and innovation.
Uploaded image

Maude Morrison

Deputy Director
Maude is a peacebuilding practitioner based in Beirut, Lebanon. Prior to her work with Build Up, Maude worked in Myanmar, managing a conflict monitoring program focusing on religious tensions.
Uploaded image

Kate Mytty

Community Transformation Lead
Kate is a community builder who specialises in book publishing, shaping ideas, building meaningful stories, and connecting people with ideas and ideas with people.
Uploaded image

Julie Hawke

Dialogue & Learning Lead
Julie draws on years of mediation, facilitation, and youth development experience to enable an increased and diversified group of people to access learning, networking, and intercultural dialogue opportunities through online education and virtual exchange.
Uploaded image

Claudia Meier

Social Cohesion Lead
Claudia is a peacebuilder and humanitarian with a passion for process facilitation, photography, and graphic recording. She currently advises on humanitarian action at the Global Public Policy Institute (GPPi). Prior to that, she managed Interpeace’s programs in Burundi and Rwanda.
Uploaded image

Jacob Lefton

Tech & Design Lead
Jacob is craftsperson with a decade of experience in arts, writing, education, and community engagement. His varied work has included metalsmithing, film, animation, and interactive installation, as well as youth writing workshops, educational policy, game design, and social circus.
Uploaded image

Jerry McCann

Peace Engineer + Board Secretary
Jerry has spent the last 30 years honing his skills as a change agent, from structural engineering in the USA to international peacebuilding around the world. As well as full team member, Jerry is the Secretary of Build Up’s Board of Advisors.
Uploaded image

Mahmoud Bastati

Program Manager
Uploaded image

Zeina Aboul-Hosn

Associate
Zeina is a documentary filmmaker and writer based in Beirut. Her work focuses on issues of culture, identity, rights, and peacebuilding. She has worked with news broadcasters, and regional & international organisations. When not making films or writing, she can be found at her pottery wheel.
Uploaded image

Mira El Mawla

Associate
Uploaded image

Simon Safieh

Associate
Simon Safieh is an independent filmmaker, born in Tartous, Syria. He has scripted and directed documentaries for the UN, and worked on his own independent films. He is currently the creative director of Peace Lens.
Uploaded image

Bailee McCune Rasmussen

Online Facilitator
Uploaded image

Danny Becker

Online Facilitator
Uploaded image

Monique Mullenaux

Online Facilitator
Uploaded image

Michelle Johnson Blimes

Online Facilitator
Uploaded image

Diana Dajer

Board Chair
Diana is a PhD candidate of Socio-Legal Studies at the University of Oxford, a Skoll Centre for Social Entrepreneurship Research for Action Awardee, and the director and founder of Policentrico.
Uploaded image

Rodrigo Davies

Board Treasurer + Co-founder
Rodrigo is a civic technologist and researcher whose work focuses on designing, building and analyzing tools that widen and deepen participation. Rodrigo is the Treasurer of Build Up’s Board of Advisors.
Uploaded image

Sanjana Hattotuwa

Board Member
Sanjana is a Senior Researcher at the Centre for Policy Alternatives, Special Advisor at the ICT4Peace Foundation, Founding Editor of Groundviews, TED Fellow and Ashoka Fellow. Sanjana sits on Build Up’s Board of Advisors.
Uploaded image

Chip Hauss

Board Member
Chip is a professional peacebuilder with a focus on systems and wicked problems after years as an academic.
Uploaded image

Leah Jones

Board Member
Leah is a technologist based in San Francisco. Until recently, she was a Director of Engineering at Slack.