Cincinnati Hacking Homelessness

By Michael Barnes

In order to activate our community to alleviate homelessness, we are excited to announce our upcoming event, “Cincinnati Hacking Homelessness.”


Our vision is a Cincinnati region where all people have a safe place to reside, day and night.


To accomplish our Vision, we will bring together all stakeholders in the community, including those often not considered part of the solution. There, we will be guided through a process to generate meaningful and innovative solutions aimed at reducing homelessness; the process will include defining homelessness, developing innovative responses to realize a fully-housed population, and metrics to measure success by setting SMART goals for improvement.

This is our concrete response to my previous concepts regarding a Roadmap to Solving Today’s Biggest Problems.

The Event

We will convene a group of 100 people for a weekend. This group will include all stakeholders in the community. This list begins with currently/recently homeless individuals. We will also include government, academia, business/entrepreneurs, and nonprofit professionals. Anyone interested in reducing the number of people experiencing homelessness will be included.

Importantly, this event will not be dominated by the “big boys” in this arena. Instead, we will use the collective wisdom of the community to identify which priorities and strategies have momentum and champions to implement them. It will not result in any specific organization saying, “Just give us more money to do more of what we already do.”

Using a variety of techniques, we will be guided through exercises to identify and develop innovative solutions to reduce the population of those lacking sufficient shelter.


Far too often people are convened to discuss problems and ideate solutions. Unfortunately, there is no plan for and little actual follow up and implementation, so change does not happen. Our event is being planned with this factor in mind.

Our expected outcomes from this process are ideas for new businesses, social ventures, nonprofits, and programs. These will either directly lead to more people being housed, fewer ending up without housing, or supporting those on the streets.

This event will also serve to bring people together to better understand who in the community is doing what with relation to the homeless. It is expected that collaborations will be borne out of the “chance collisions” of those in the room.

We will develop metrics of success using SMART goals to measure impact of our output.

Our Ask

As we progress, we will be looking for those who have interest in this topic. We will need people who like to develop, plan, or host events, sponsors, coaches and consultants who can help our spinoffs to succeed and many others. And, of course, we are interested in talking to anyone who might like to participate in this weekend event.

To get involved, please contact us:

Michael Barnes


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