The AkiraChix, an-all girls’ team, was declared a winner of the recently held IPO48 software development competition in Kenya. The IPO48 initiative brought together 100 participants from all over the country to pitch their ideas, question business models, form teams and create 17 prototypes and products which, by the end of 48 hours, were ready for the market (Afrinnovator). The winning girls came up with an innovative M-Farm, a mobile-based marketplace that is targeted to small-scale farmers to increase their agriculture productivity.
ITC and Good Governance
Last week, I attended a presentation on Strengthening Good Local Governance in Indonesia: Lessons from a Demand-Driven Approach. The $62 million 5-year USAID-funded program focused on both the supply (strengthening core competencies of local administration) and demand (strengthening institutions to ‘lobby’ for good governance) in the context of the recent “big bang” decentralization in Indonesia. The presentation featured various tools and instruments for good governance. I was particularly struck by ‘SMS gateways’ - a new e-governance tool that has been used to strengthen public accountability mechanisms in local governance.