Do you believe that information & communication technologies and innovation can help end poverty in your country? Share your reflections and get your voice counted by policymakers and development professionals.
Information and Communication Technologies
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The Mauritanian Minister of Economic Affairs and Development, Mr. Sidi Ould Tah, has just signed the WARCIP agreement (Mauritania Program for Regional Communications Infrastructure in West Africa), a program financed by the World Bank that aims to connect all regions of the country to high-speed Internet by 2015 (for more details: www.warcip.mr). This signature represents for me a new step toward achievement of this project on which I have been working for two years now.
In a recent post on digital identities, we argued that information and communication technologies (ICTs) can be a force multiplier in achieving the World Bank’s goals of ending extreme poverty within a generation and promoting shared prosperity. Mobile devices are also a critical part of this as they can facilitate and strengthen evidence-based approaches to tackling problems of relevance to the poor.
On June 17-18, there will be a high-level meeting in Kigali entitled Smart Rwanda Days. This event is being hosted by the Rwandan Ministry of Youth and ICT to finalize their vision for a Smart Rwanda and launch it with the support of a broad community. To ensure that they are moving forward with the best ideas possible, they are looking for your ideas and suggestions, which you can enter here.
The Smart Rwanda vision looks to build on all the great work currently happening in Rwanda -- and make it smarter by applying lessons from all over the world and leveraging the latest in modern thinking to specific target areas.
Through my work on the Uganda Agricultural Technology and Agribusiness Advisory (ATAAS), managed by Rasit Pertev, I have learned that Banana is a major staple in Uganda consumed by over 14 million people – the highest annual consumption of bananas in the world at about 0.7kg per person per day.
Fig. 1. Proposed approach towards co-creating services for citizens
At the end of 2012, infoDev released a study, conducted by iHub Research and Research Solutions Africa, looking at how mobile phones are being used by those at the economic base of the pyramid in Kenya (living on less than US$2.5 per day). The study, funded by the Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Finland and UKaid, covered urban and rural areas of 6 districts in Kenya.