Voices from Europe & Central Asia
Syndicate content

Information and Communication Technologies

Higher education institutions as drivers of innovation and growth in Azerbaijan

Igor Kheyfets's picture
Also available in: Русский
Azerbaijan Education

It’s a cold spring day in Baku, and several students from Azerbaijan State Oil and Industry University (ASOIU) are huddled around a laptop trying to project an image onto their classroom wall.
 
Once the image is projected, one of the students “writes” on the surface of the classroom wall – as he would on the computer screen – using customized software called CamTouch, which allows the user to turn any surface into an interactive “smartboard”. The student also selects an icon and virtually opens a document with the help of a special stylus.

Building-up cyber resilience in the Kyrgyz Republic

Natalija Gelvanovska-Garcia's picture
Also available in: Русский
In my previous career at Lithuania’s Communications Regulatory Authority (RRT), I had the opportunity to observe how EU member states began to acknowledge and embrace the importance of cybersecurity. For many of them, though, it would begin with a major shock – a serious national-level cybersecurity incident.
 
Since joining the World Bank, I have observed a similar trend across the developing countries. For instance, the Government of the Kyrgyz Republic has begun to place stronger emphasis on cyber resilience after a series of incidents, including digital vandalism of organizations’ websites. Among other considerations, also these cyber events led to the inclusion of cybersecurity financing in a World Bank $50 million Digital CASA (Central Asia-South Asia) – Kyrgyz Republic Project while, at the same time, the Bank catalyzed complementary grants for technical assistance to the government.

One of these grants is the “Global Cyber Security Capacity Building Program”. We chose the Kyrgyz Republic as the first beneficiary country for the Program, and then others followed suit: Ghana, FYR Macedonia, and Myanmar. The financing came from Korea’s Ministry of Strategy and Finance (MoSF), through the Korea-World Bank Group Partnership Facility (KWPF), which is administered by the World Bank.

Hackathons and mobile apps: developing innovative responses to sexual violence in Kyrgyzstan

American University of Central Asia - Hackathon Team Leaders's picture


As we take part in the 16 Days of Activism Against Gender-Based Violence campaign over the coming weeks, we couldn’t be more excited about sharing an update than this one.

We recently brought a team of technologically savvy students together and worked hard for two days with very little sleep to develop an application to respond to sexual violence. The hard work paid off when our team was awarded first place in a Hackathon at the American University of Central Asia (AUCA).

On the road in Georgia – through past, present and future

Mercy Tembon's picture
A handmade map of Georgia




















What an experience! It started bright and early on a Thursday morning as we boarded the car in the basement of the Word Bank office in Tbilisi and set off for a two-day visit to the Imereti region in the west of Georgia.

The first stop along our route was the Gelati Monastic Complex – a UNESCO World Heritage Site – which is an impressive conservation and restoration project supported through the World Bank’s Second Regional Development Project (RDP), the US Ambassador’s Fund for Cultural Preservation and the State Municipal Development Fund of Georgia. Our contribution is to help build infrastructure around the monastic complex that will facilitate tourist access to this historical site, and by consequence help further develop the local economy.

Armenia can reach for the stars – with the right skills!

Laura Bailey's picture
Also available in: Հայերեն
STEM


























April 7th is an Armenian national holiday celebrating motherhood and beauty. And it may not surprise you that, since it comes one short month after International Women’s Day, we tend to combine the two events into a 30-day celebration of opportunity.

We get a lot of oversees movies here in Armenia – conveniently located at geographic and cultural crossroads – so l discovered a charming film called Hidden Figures which has captured a lot of interest in this very scientifically-minded country. It is an inspiring story with a lesson that translates easily here – that if all Armenian students and workers are empowered with skills, opportunity, and family and community support, they too could reach for the stars!

Judging it smart, Azerbaijan’s courts go digital

Tako Kobakhidze's picture
Baku


















I was back in Baku recently, after a 9 year gap, and guess what I recognized first? Yes, those famous pounding winds – immortalized in the city’s ancient Persian name of Bādkube – or “city of winds”. But as I went about rediscovering this thriving city along the Caspian Sea, I soon realized that I would also be witness to “winds of change”.

Indeed, so much had changed here since my last visit. Most visibly, the urban skyline is now speckled with construction cranes, reflecting a city busy growing upward – its physical outline seeming to transform before my eyes. But infrastructure is just one aspect of Baku’s modern story. Beyond the hectic expansion of concrete and metal, I was also able to observe exciting changes in technology and innovation that are helping to transform an integral part of this city’s life – its judicial services!

Modernizing property registration: Four lessons we can learn from Russia

Wael Zakout's picture
Also available in: Русский
 Wael Zakout

I just came back from a trip to Russia. Back in 2006 and 2007, I had traveled to Russia frequently as the lead for the Cadastre Development Project. This time - as a Global Lead for Land and Geospatial at the World Bank - I saw something I did not expect to see.

Privatization of real-estate properties and protecting property rights became two important pillars of transformation following the end of the Soviet era. But, while they were important policy goals in the 1990s, the system did not really function properly: rights were not fully protected and people waited for many months to register property transactions.

ციფრული რევოლუციის, უნარებისა და კომუნიკაციების მომავლის შესახებ

Tako Kobakhidze's picture
Also available in: English

 

WDR2016
ინფორმაციისა და კომუნიკაციების სფეროში კაცობრიობის ისტორიაში ჯერ არნახული უდიდესი რევოლუცია ხდება. მართალია, ამ ფრაზის ავტორი მე არ ვარ, მაგრამ სრულიად ვეთანხმები მას. სწორედ ამ წინადადებამ მიბიძგა წამეკითხა დოკუმენტის „მსოფლიოს განვითარების ანგარიში -2016: ციფრული დივიდენდები“ სრული მიმოხილვა.
 
ყოველთვის მაინტერესებდა, რას ნიშნავს სინამდვილეში ციფრული რევოლუცია. ვის, თუ არა ნახსენები ანგარიშის თანაავტორს შეეძლო ამ კითხვაზე პასუხის გაცემა! დიახ, გასულ კვირას შესაძლებლობა მომეცა, ინტერვიუ ჩამეწერა თბილისში მყოფ უვე დაიხმანთან. ის საქართველოს  8 აპრილს ეწვია „როუდშოუს“ ფარგლებში მსოფლიო ბანკის ჯგუფის მიერ განხორციელებული სამუშაოს წარსადგენად მთავრობის, ბიზნესის, აკადემიური წრეების, სტუდენტების და სხვა დაინტერესებული აუდიტორიის წინაშე ბიზნეს ფორუმზე: ინოვაცია და ციფრული ეკონომიკა.

On digital revolution, skills and the future of communications

Tako Kobakhidze's picture
Also available in: Georgian

WDR2016

We find ourselves in the midst of the greatest information and communications revolution in human history. I’m not the author of this phrase, but I fully agree with it. This particular sentence made me read the entire overview of the World Development Report 2016: Digital Dividends.

I have always been wondering what does the Digital Revolution actually mean. Who, but the Co-Director of the report could have answered my question best?! Yes, I had the opportunity to interview Uwe Deichmann last week in Tbilisi. He visited Georgia as part of the ‘road-show’ to present this work of the World Bank Group team to the government, business, academia, students, and other interested audience attending the Business Forum: Innovation and Digital Economy.

What will it take for Romania to fully reap the dividends of digital transformation?

Marc Lixi's picture
Also available in: Română
Last week I was in Bucharest and attended the launch of the World Development Report (WDR) 2016: Digital Dividends. The event was co-hosted by the National School of Political and Administrative Studies (SNSPA) and the World Bank.

It was the first country-focused launch in an EU member state and brought together academics, business executives, regulators, journalists, former and current policy-makers to discuss the digital agenda and its implications for Romania’s EU2020 targets, growth and development.

But this launch is not the only reason why Romania stands out.

The country actually represents a paradoxical case study in terms of digital transformation.    

Romania boasts nine of the world’s top fifteen cities with the fastest broadband internet, yet over 40% of the population is at risk of poverty or social exclusion – the highest rate in the EU.

Pages