Nine execs from tech companies including Twitter, Google, and YouTube are in Iraq to meet with the local government and private groups to see how technology can help rebuild the country. The State Department has not released the names of the execs on the mission but Scott Heiferman, co-founder and CEO of Meetup; Jack Dorsey, co-founder of Twitter; Jason Liebman, co-founder and CEO of Howcast; Hunter Walk, product manager at YouTube, and Richard Robbins, director of social innovation at AT&T, seem to be on board according to Twitter chatter.
Here’s an except from the statement the State Department released today:
The delegation includes a mix of CEOs, Vice-Presidents and senior representatives from AT&T, Google, Twitter, Howcast, Meetup, You Tube, Automattic/Wordpress, and Blue State Digital. During their visit to Iraq, they will provide conceptual input as well as ideas on how new technologies can be used to build local capacity, foster greater transparency and accountability, build upon anti-corruption efforts, promote critical thinking in the classroom, scale-up civil society, and further empower local entities and individuals by providing the tools for network building. As Iraqis think about how to integrate new technology as a tool for smart power, we view this as an opportunity to invite the American technology industry to be part of this creative genesis.
That’s right. After six years of war, Silicon Valley is coming to save Iraq. Or not.