Call for Participation

Call for Participation to SHA2017

SHA2017 is currently requesting proposals for participation, including content

TLDR: submit here

SHA2017 is a five-day international outdoor technology and security conference in the Netherlands from the 4th till the 8th of August 2017. We are calling for participation in the form of talks, workshops, installations, volunteers, and more

A motley bunch of around 5000 hackers, free-thinkers, philosophers, activists, geeks, scientists, artists, makers, creative minds, and others will convene from all over the world to contemplate, reflect, share, discuss, criticise, look ahead, code, build, and more.

The location is the Scoutinglandgoed in Zeewolde, 55km east of Amsterdam. SHA2017 is a non-commercial, self-organised community event; attending the event means that you are also volunteering to help us make it happen.

SHA2017 is the 8th edition with a proud lineage

SHA2017 is the 8th edition in a proud lineage. The seed for these events sprouted from the late 1980s hacker community embodied by ‘Hippies from Hell’ and the journal for techno-anarchists ‘Hack-tic’.

In 1989 the Galactic Hacker Party was held at Paradiso, a public forum in Amsterdam. This indoor event brought together pioneers at the frontiers of the internet to revel in the upcoming revolution, but also to be critical of the power structures governing the nascent internet and its impact on society.

In 1993, four years later, Hacking at the End of the Universe was the first open-air event in the series. Several hundred hackers set up camp in the outdoors. While the internet was not something people had at home, the whole campsite was already connected.

The landscape has changed dramatically; at the same time, a lot of what was at stake in 1989 remains at stake.

Our dependence on information technology is still on an upward curve, to the point where it warrants serious discussions of the effects of its convenience and power on the resilience of our society, our fundamental rights, our democracy, the communities it is made up of, and our personal lives.

This dependence plays out from the mundane, too often facepalm-worthy levels of the Internet of Things, through our difficulties with escaping the network effects of large internet platforms, up to the geopolitical dimensions of unauthorised transparency through whistleblowing and leaks. This is why we chose this event’s theme:

Convenience & Resilience
And since one can have both a theme and a motto, we have also chosen a motto: Put on your robe and wizard hat. Because today’s cybering is tomorrow’s smurfing.
Also because a lot of the technical and political choices we make (individually and collectively) are about squaring convenience with reselience. For example our hardware and software stacks are only truly free and open (and resilient by extension) up to a point, because at some point there is too high a price to be paid in terms of convenience. For the vast masses this means getting herded into walled gardens such as Facebook, Apple, and Microsoft. Likewise with decentralised tools versus really nifty online platforms. Or the tension between usability and security.
Or for policymakers for whom it is much more convenient to criminalise tinkering with systems further than to face the harsh reality that the vast majority of our infrastructures are so brittle that the term resilience becomes laughable. At the same time it is intentionally vague, because ultimately, it is not for us, the SHA2017 Content Team, to define what will happen at SHA2017 but for you. For this is a call for participation to you, the avant-garde of the information revolution and those who live and breathe technology, subversively or just retro and everything in between.
Become a volunteer
Even if you don’t intend to contribute content to SHA2017, we still need your participation. Content is just one of the many ingredients that make a self-organised event like SHA2017 work. Show your prototypes, share your designs and code. Have that alternative to a centralised “smart” grid. Or be there and contribute by organising something.
Do you want to gather a group of like-minded people and organise a village within the event? Get in touch with Can you join earlier for the build-up, or stay after the event to tear down? By all means, join the build-up or tear-down teams.
At the event itself, there will be plenty of need for volunteers to make it happen. From announcing speakers on stage to helping others in getting around and settling in. SHA2017 is a massive experiment in temporary infrastructure, so if you can contribute to the preparations in the year ahead, please do join the core ORGA. You can also become a volunteer at the event itself (we call those volunteers 'angels'), please do subscribe to their mailinglist, they are also on IRC on Freenode on #sha2017-angel.
And of course, we like to see content submitted. Submit early, submit often.

Submit proposals for content

Help make SHA2017 become the exciting, inspiring and awesome community-driven event everyone is looking forward to. Submit your proposal now, and if you know of someone you think should be present, ask them to submit!

Submissions can be entered through the SHA2017 content submission system:

The deadline for proposals is March 31st, 2017. But if you are Edward Snowden’s Chinese brother and come out in April we will see what we can do. Also, if you are from outside the European Union, you may have visa requirements with a substantial leadtime, please mention that in your proposal so we can give it priority for processing it.

All proposals submitted before the deadline will be reviewed. Notifications of acceptance or rejection will start being sent out before April 30th, 2017. A rejection can also mean that we would like to recommend your proposal to villages that have their own programmes, so do not despair.

The program will be made available incrementally, from May 1st, 2017.

What submissions are we looking for and how will we look at them?

The scope of this call for participation is not limited to traditional lectures. We are looking for other formats as well: workshops (either bound in time or continuously running), presentations, demonstrations, films, performances engaging the audience, and art installations.

(Do understand that installations may be subject to safety rules imposed upon us by the local municipality, so your napalm spewing Godzilla replica, despite all its awesomeness, may run into trouble that is not of our making)

The one format we are less keen on is panels. Especially “manels” (panels consisting only of male individuals). But we are not going to rule that out either.

Substance-wise, we are looking for technical topics, such as information security, but also broader technological, social, and political topics. And no less important: the arts. In short, if you want to geek out in a surprising way about anything, we would like to take it into consideration.

At past events we’ve seen unexpected proposals that had a sufficient wow-factor while defying categorisation. For example, the DIY cyclotron at HAR2009, or the Bach piano concert at OHM2013. The most important rule: be interesting. Don’t worry that your topic is too technical or too specialised; ultra-specialist topics often merit a stage as well.

Speaker-wise, it helps if you have had prior public appearances, but it is not a requirement. Other than that there are few other requirements for being a speaker than common sense would require. We aim to be an event that welcomes participation, including speaking, by all sapient beings.

That does not mean we will be blind to who is proposing what. If you are part of an entity that is structurally at odds with hacker ethics, do not expect a platform on which you will speak unchallenged. In that case we may put you on a panel with others capable of providing a balance. Because we like to challenge authority. Still, we are not keen on panels to begin with, so you may be out of luck.

Likewise, if you have a proven record of behaviour that is at odds with hacker ethics, our judgement will extend past the merits of your submission to those of you as a person. To put it simple: we reserve a margin of appreciation over your person in that case. But here are our values, goals and intentions:

We want to provide an environment that is welcoming to all sapient beings and you may not be conductive to that. We do not intend to provide an intellectually safe space; both speakers and other participants are most welcome to challenge orthodoxy. The need to create a physically safe space for everyone is paramount, however. We demand of all participants they are excellent to each other, even if they disagree on major political points such as the ideological purity of a specific OS.

These are the values we will try and adhere to when curating the proposals for content. In short, any content that might interest the audience of technophiles at SHA2017 is welcome. Surprise and inspire the world!

Content for kids/adolescents/young adults

Initiatives targeting this new generation of hackers are encouraged. Not only ‘hacky’ crafts and games, but also introductions to more advanced topics, like the complexities of the internet, privacy, programming, security, etc, are to be expected. Want to do a workshop with water rockets? Knock yourself out!


On behalf of the wider ORGA that is working on making this happen, the SHA2017 Content Team. 

Please direct your questions to

Sign up for our announce list

Enter your mail here to sign up on our announce list