The IEEE Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technology (SIGHT) is an Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) program, instituted by the IEEE Humanitarian Activities Committee (HAC).

IEEE SIGHT is a global network of groups consisting of IEEE members and volunteers who identify and address local problems by applying their technical skills and partnering with their local communities.

Our Vision, Mission & Values


Underserved communities around the world are able to benefit from technology as they seek sustainable solutions to development challenges.


The Special Interest Group on Humanitarian Technology (SIGHT) program is a network of IEEE volunteers around the globe that partner with underserved communities and local organizations to leverage technology for sustainable development.


SIGHT focuses on sustainable solutions that make a long­term difference in the lives of people.
SIGHT operates through local volunteers and partners working with local communities.
For SIGHT, success is only achieved through partnerships, starting with the community and extending to government organizations, NGOs, schools, hospitals, companies, and others.
For SIGHT and its volunteers to be both effective and sustainable, continuous training and education is essential.

“Local” is defined by the fact that key leaders of the project are citizens and/or permanent residents of the geographical area in which the project is to take place.

A Note from the Chair

I have been an IEEE member for over thirty years but it was only during the last 15 years that I became an IEEE volunteer.  I decided to join the 1999 IEEE International Microwave Symposium Steering Committee which was planning for IMS1999 to be held in Anaheim, California.

Through this step, I immediately saw the value of volunteerism: To benefit a greater technical community that crossed institutional borders which divide us. I experienced the joy of doing a job well done that most of the conference attendees did not even notice, but our team did. From the bonds that were started, I have developed close friends who share a common goal. This is the magic of the IEEE community – doing things together to benefit humanity.

This is the magic of the IEEE community – doing things together to benefit humanity.

What I have always been impressed by with IEEE SIGHT, led by then SIGHT Chair Kartik Kulkarni, is the focus on the needs identified by local people that demanded a technological solution that was appropriate and leveraged sustainable technology. SIGHT’s guiding principle was not to impose a Western high-tech solution but to act with cultural sensitivity to take local ideas and to help people to transform them into solutions that will not be abandoned after we leave.

SIGHT has grown extensively in the last several years. In 2017, our challenge will be to sustain the existing SIGHT groups. We will encourage them to keep moving and not be satisfied with last year’s results, and at the same time to grow in awareness and create new groups and activities in all IEEE regions.

I would like to grow SIGHT particularly in Region 8 and 9. In Region 8, there are great needs in North Africa and the Middle East. In R9, Latin America, there are compelling needs as well. In 2016, MTT-S launched a SIGHT conference event at the first ever IEEE Latin American Microwave Conference in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.  It was a great success.  We look forward to supporting SIGHT groups in Peru, Brazil and Argentina in 2017. I look forward to working with all of you!

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Tim Lee
SIGHT Steering Committee Chair

SIGHT Steering Committee ›
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