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Writing on the Wall as Appropriate Technology for Transparency

Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (known widely as NREGA) is the rural employment guarantee scheme implemented by the Indian government in August 2005. The law guarantees 100 days of work for a pay of Rs 120 a day (see MGNREGA on Wikipedia). With its Rs 40,000 crore budget, it is no surprise that the project is bedeviled by charges of corruption and

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Categories: asia, featured, regions

Rote Memorization Fail: Thiruvilayadal vs. Konar Tamil Urai

Recently we were watching the movie Thiruvilayadal at a friend’s place. Without going into too much of the plot (since that does not add anything to the subject of this post), there is a segment in it where Nakkeeran, the court poet, finds fault with a poetic piece composed by none other than god Shiva himself. Here is the piece, cued to start at 55

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Categories: asia, solutions

ICT for Banking & Micro Finance

ICT for Development Case Studies Series

IV. Banking & Micro Finance

Lessons from the Field – ICTs in Microfinance
PRODEM, for example, is using ICTs to verify the identity of its customers. It utilizes a combination of smart card technology combined with biometrics to allow fingerprint ID verification at all of its branches and ATMs. The use of fingerprint verification ensures that only the account

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Categories: africa, asia, latin america, regions, research, resources

ICT for Livelihood & Skills Training

ICT for Development Case Studies Series

III. Livelihood & Skills Training

Egypt: Youth Clubs for Tomorrow’s Leaders
Since 2001, the Egyptian government has undertaken a campaign to bring technology skills to the country’s youth. It has established more than 1,000 IT clubs offering a range of training opportunities for students. For isolated communities, the government has launched mobile IT clubs. Two container trucks with satellite

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Categories: africa, asia, latin america, middle east, regions, research, resources

ICT for Agriculture Extension Services

ICT for Development Case Studies Series

II. Agriculture Extension Services

Sustaining Women Farmers with the Help of ICTs in Ukraine
Given the critical importance of legal, market, and technical information to women farmers, a telecentre project titled ‘Sustaining Women Farmers in Ukraine’ has been started Information Service Centres are set up at various oblasts (regions) that cover the entire country. The Regional Council of Female

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Categories: africa, asia, latin america, middle east, regions

ICT for Market Access and Pricing

ICT for Development Case Studies Series

I. Market Access and Pricing

From conception to replication
Today, using FrontlineSMS, their pilot project is distributing prices from five large buyers to about 150 farmers, village leaders and farmers groups by SMS in a classic “market transparency” intervention. And it’s working. Prices are going up for farmers, and the buyers are getting access to more quantity and better

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Categories: africa, asia, regions, research, resources

Mobile Web, Digital Divide, and Development

PC World has an enlightening article from Kiwanja’s Ken Banks about the growing disconnect between mobile applications envisioned for development and the realities on the ground.

…I see a widening knowledge, or awareness, gap. In the West, when we talk of mobiles helping close the digital divide, many people make a huge assumption about the technologies available to users in developing countries. We look at

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Categories: asia, regions, solutions

Gender and Economic Empowerment: The Role of ICTs

As part of the Sustainability Development Network week from Feb 19-29, World Bank had an educational and inspiring seminar on how ICTs can play a role in the economic empowerment of women. Yeah, OK, I am probably biased because the event incorporates three of my favorite areas – ICT, women, economic empowerment. But it really was all that and more.

Lots of real-world examples

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Categories: africa, asia, latin america, middle east, regions

Dialing for Development

A benefit-feasibility quadrant from the December 2007 working paper on “Going Wireless: Dialing for Development. How Mobile Devices are Transforming Economic Development at the Base of the Pyramid” by David Lehr, Acumen Fund.

Feasibility includes likely financial, technical, cultural, political and regulatory constraints.

The size or volume of bubble represents disruption possibilities within the sector.

The paper highlights mobile solutions from all over

Categories: africa, asia, middle east, regions, research, resources

Facebook User Statistics (Nov 2007)

Overall country rank, user numbers, and gender break-down of Facebook users (as of Nov 2007)

42,966,780 total users

15,521,660 (36.12%) male; 18,118,600 (42%) female; 9,326,520 (21.71%) unspecified.

Country
Rank
Total
Male
Female
Unspec.

United States
1
18,071,700
40.11%
45.98%
13.90%

Turkey
5
1,633,760
30.07%
19.86%
50.07%

South Africa
9
603,960
36.85%
40.96%
22.18%

Egypt
12
396,200
37.12%
27.30%
35.5%

India
14
333,560
33.88%
26.83%
39.30%

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Categories: africa, asia, middle east, regions, research, stats
Featured Posts
  • Krishi Janani: Stepping Out Into the Great Unknown

    Krishi Janani: Ag Tech Network

    So…Appropriate IT is working on a new sustainable agriculture technology platform – Krishi Janani. We have been at it for a while now, launching a partially working prototype earlier this year. Before I go into the ‘Great Unknown’ parts of the story, a quick summary:

    Krishi Janani is an ag tech network (online platform + young women-led rural ag tech centers) enabling organic and sustainable

  • Pay It Forward: A Training in Namakkal

    Namakkal Training 6

    A three day technology training in building websites with WordPress at PGP college in Namakkal, Tamil Nadu

    By Alexandra de Vogel, Assistant Trainer

    With a background in Industrial design and innovation management, being part of this training was a first experience for me. But now I know that it will definitely not be my last experience in this field. These three days in Namakkal

  • Learning is a Mindset

    AIDA Inauguration 5

    (Guest blog by Heather A. Moore)

    Usha recently invited me to share some words of advice with the inspiring young women that had recently graduated from the pilot program of AIDA, Appropriate IT’s Development Academy, and with those from the community. Having gathered some sage advice from a few wise and generous mentors throughout my career, as well as the hard earned wisdom that comes

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