Code for the Future

Problem statement:

The project attempted to address inequalities in the city of Rome through education. One of the main factors contributing to inequalities is the incarceration of children in the juvenile justice system, which substantially increases the likelihood that youth will then be incarcerated in the adult criminal justice system, entering and often never leaving, the vicious circle of crime. Rehabilitation programs often fail to fully provide the youth with skills necessary to facilitate employability and social inclusion. Such skills are crucial to support such youth and should be offered through innovative approaches.  


Target group:

The project focused on less fortunate children that are in rehabilitative programmes and juvenile prisons (13-17 years old).


Proposed solution:

The project aimed to teach pupils about the foundation of software-coding in order to provide them with the knowledge and the skills that would allow them to break the vicious circle of recidivism. The goal was to give them the fundamentals of software-coding in a visual environment Scratch (ideated by MIT), allowing them to continue to practice and learn even after the pilot project was over.



The project aimed to teach pupils the foundation of software coding in order to be able to code with a basic language as Scratch and increase their chances of finding an internship or job. The course lasted 3 months and was held once a week thanks to the cooperation with a startup called Codemotion that helped providing the training in the jail.


Short-term goals / Results:

The project showed a retention rate of 30 % (3 out of 10 persons in the class attended the course until the end of the program – while the others dropped out either because they left the prison in the meantime – high turnover in a juvenile prison – or simply because they dropped the class). The pupils needed to find a concrete motivation to stay in the class, they were very impressed by the immediate results and could not focus on a long term impact.


Avaiable metrics: 

  • 10 people reached

  • 5 Shapers participated

  • 12 classes were held.



The partners for this project were: Italian Department of Justice, Codemotion, Oracle Corporation.