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Ben Mason joined betterplace lab, a Berlin-based nonprofit think tank, in 2013 and since February 2016, he has been leading the lab’s work on digital technology and its benefits for refugees and other migrants. betterplace lab, more broadly, works at the intersection of digital innovation and civil society through a mix of research and other programs, such as capacity building for nongovernmental organizations and administering innovation funds.
Along with Lavinia Schwedersky and Akram Alfawakheeri, Mr. Mason co-authored the report Digital Routes to Integration: How Civic Tech Innovations Are Supporting Refugees in Germany (betterplace lab, 2017). Before that, with Dennis Buchmann, he wrote ICT4Refugees: A Report on the Emerging Landscape of Digital Responses to the Refugee Crisis (betterplace lab, 2016).
Mr. Mason holds a BA in philosophy and German from Oxford University.
Faced with an aging workforce and growing skill shortages in the IT sector, some German policymakers and industry experts have seized on the idea that recently arrived refugees could be a natural fit for careers in tech. This report examines the case for training refugees for IT jobs and explores the variety of coding schools that have cropped up in Germany to help newcomers succeed in the field.