Researchers in Kenya are testing a new device that transmits data on handpumps in areas with scarce water supply. They hope that the use of technology will contribute to institutional reforms.
Paola Rattu's insight:
This application of mobile technology for improving water governance shows that the use of new information technologies can lead to effective results only if it is supported by actions in the field, and if necessary by reforms.
This new open source technological devices have the potential to help the states taking deeper roots into their territories even beyond water governance.
The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) launched a new online portal allowing open, comprehensive public access to data on the agency’s work in 177 countries and territories, as part of their commitment to reach full transparency by 2013. As scheduled, UNDP has published its data in the IATI standard.
The new portal, open.undp.org, comprises comprehensive programmatic information— from income and expenditures to activities and results—on more than 6,000 active UNDP projects, as well as those that financially closed in 2011, along with more than 8,000 outputs or results. As the world’s largest implementing agency and with most of its projects being funded by multiple donors, UNDP has an important role to play in forwarding IATI’s goal of being able to trace aid from origin to final point of spend.
Le Citizen Cyberscience Center, partenariat entre le l’Université de Genève, le CERN, et l'Institut des Nations Unies pour la Formation et la Recherche, vient de lancer le programme «ForestWatcher», en collaboration avec l’Institut de recherche spatiale du Brésil et l’Université fédérale de Sao Paulo. Ce projet constitue un premier pas en vue de mettre en place une surveillance citoyenne sur Internet de la déforestation.
Quel rôle peuvent jouer l’information et le web face aux défis mondiaux? Du 3 au 5 décembre, des étudiants organisent à l’UNIGE une série d’événements afin de susciter le débat et des actions auprès du public à ce sujet.
The BBC have a short clip here of the new DFID Minister Justine Greening visiting the Hunger Safety Net Programme in Northern Kenya, where eligible households are said to get $40 every couple of months via a "Smartcard."
Internet firms continue to drive global economic growth and job increases in the information technology sector, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) found in a new report.
The report provides details on the rise of employment in the ICT sector, led by internet firms such as Amazon and Google, but also provides a number of other data such as revenue earned and projections.
Of all the promising technological innovations presented at the 2012 Social Good Summit in New York City, the one that most intrigued me came from a print journalist. New York Times Columnist Nicholas Kristof took the stage on the final day of the Social Good Summit, Monday September 24th, along with Asi Burak of Games for Change, and pitched his next endeavor: a mobile game based on his widely sold book, Half the Sky.
Half the Sky – authored by the award winning married couple, Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn – tells the story of women and girls in the developing world who are oppressed, and argues that society's “economic progress lies in unleashing women's potential.” Since its publication in 2009, the book's enormous success prompted Kristof and WuDunn to create the Half the Sky Movement, an effort to advance women's empowerment across multiple platforms in order to ignite real change. Gaming – the act of playing electronic mobile or video games – is just one example of the platforms the Half the Sky Movement is seeking to leverage.
One source of continuous frustration for ICT4D researchers is the glacial pace of academia. One has to submit papers 8 months in advance for conferences that are over a year away - like ICTD. Or it usually takes about 2 years minimum to get a paper published in a journal. If you are a researcher, you have to mentally prepare for that wait or look for a different way to get your ideas into the ICT4D conversation. One way is to start a blog, another is to submit your paper to an existing blog, like ICTworks.
That said, in the university setting, journals are often considered the only "real" publication venue. So to help those trying to get research validation, here is a list of journals that publish articles related to the use of information and communication technologies to accelerate the social and economic advancement in the development world.
The Philippines looks set to expand its rapid monitoring system, based on mobile phone text messaging, to lessen the number of deaths and improve emergency response times. With over 7,000 islands and more than 100 million people, the archipelago experiences an average of 20 typhoons a year, with stronger storms in recent years.
Surveillance in post extreme emergencies and disaster (Speed), a project supported by the World Health Organisation (WHO), uses SMS/text messages on mobile phones or the internet to alert emergency health officials to dangerous situations and send them health information, and receive data on health conditions in communities and reports of disaster damage.
«Le numéro proposé, dans cette nouvelle livraison de la revue tic&société, a pour ambition d’amorcer de nouvelles perspectives sur les TICs dans les pays des Suds en sollicitant des contributions qui interrogent le passé des TICs dans les pays des Suds, sans tomber pour autant dans les pièges et les revers de l’évaluation a posteriori. Tournées résolument vers les études de problèmes empiriques, de telles perspectives permettent de relativiser les discours des promoteurs sur les rapports entre TICs et « développement » et d’éclairer, par la même occasion, sur le contexte, les stratégies et les finalités des acteurs en présence de projets d’intégration des TICs tombés dans l’oubli».
Much e-waste recycling occurs in the informal sector, in homes where women and children are engaged in unsafe recycling practices without the benefit or the knowledge of exposure-minimising technology or protective equipment.
In response to the lack of specific data and little awareness from public health on the effect of e-waste on children's health, the WHO department of Public Health and Environment (PHE) is developing a specific plan of action.
A private delegation to North Korea that includes Google’s executive chairman, Eric E. Schmidt, is urging North Korea to allow more open Internet access and cellphones, although it is unclear how that message is being heard by a leadership that has long depended on a near-total ban on outside information to maintain its totalitarian rule.
Les vidéos, émissions audio et blogs jouent un rôle de plus en plus grand dans le travail d’information sur la politique de développement. Les centres de documentation d’Alliance Sud de Lausanne et Berne ont donc développé un nouveau portail multimédia bilingue avec des vidéos et des liens vers d’autres ressources web : Alliance Sud Multimédia.
Saudi Arabia did not have an Arab Spring. But it has had a revolution of sorts.
Open criticism of this country’s royal family, once unheard-of, has become commonplace in recent months. Prominent judges and lawyers issue fierce public broadsides about large-scale government corruption and social neglect. Women deride the clerics who limit their freedoms. Even the king has come under attack.
All this dissent is taking place on the same forum: Twitter.
Three quarters of the world's more than six billion mobile phones are located in the developing world, and the ubiquity of these devices in under-served areas provides valuable digital traces of activity that have never existed before.
In particular, there is an unprecedented and largely overlooked opportunity to harness this digital data for global development efforts. From tracking the outbreak of diseases to better understanding unrepresented populations, a few promising examples are coming to light, and this mobile phone data is even proving to offer lifesavings insights.