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Weekly Wire: the Global Forum

Kalliope Kokolis's picture

These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.

NDI Tech
Practice Makes Perfect, or How We Fail Early and Succeed Late

“Ahead of the intense effort and coordination involved with PVT-type data collection on an Election Day, organizations choose to simulate the reporting and data management processes which will be required in a tense political environment.

In massive data collection exercises, “stress” or “load” tests can assess the training and commitment of the observers, the effectiveness of the communications system and the training (video!) of staff in the center.”

ICT Works
"The Boy who Changed the World" ICTworks Interview with Simeon Oriko, Founder and Executive Director of The Kuyu Project

“Simeon Oriko is a young entrepreneur, age 21, who is the founder and Executive Director of The Kuyu Project, which is a digital literacy initiative aimed at teaching African high school students how to use social media and other digital tools to effect social change in their communities.

His very interesting blog can be found here.

Can you tell me a little bit about your background in the ICT4D field? Did you have formal training?

My foundation in ICT4D began at the University of Eastern Africa, Baraton as a leader of the computer science student organization.We organized an ICT literacy drive targeted at high school students and teachers in schools around our university. A certain experience then introduced me to the ICT4D spectrum. A young girl wanted to know how to be a pilot and I took out my phone and we Googled for information about the topic. I later taught her how to use the internet to look for information and she used that skill to achieve her goal. She is now learning to be a pilot at a college near her home.”

Communication for Development

“In 1996 through General Assembly Resolution 51/172 the UN adopted a formal definition of Communication for Development:

‘Communication for development stresses the need to support two-way communication systems that enable dialogue and that allow communities to speak out, express their aspirations and concerns and participate in the decisions that relate to their development.’”

Futures of Technology in Africa

“The book 'Futures of Technology in Africa' is the result of a three year foresight project. It reveals insights into the next two decades of ICT, energy and infrastructure and how developments in these sectors are going to affect everything else. It contains scenarios providing a fascinating glimpse of how the opportunities and risks might play out. You will find advice on how businesses can take parts in the opportunities, as well as lessons that the West can learn from Africa. As a bonus, the book also contains one of the very few African science fiction stories, specially written for this publication. Whatever your interest in Africa, this book is sure to surprise you.”

Mobile Active
The Mobile Minute: African Mobile Subscriptions, Twitter’s Growth, and Explaining Near-Field Communication

“Today's Mobile Minute brings you coverage on African technology use, an interview with txteagle's Nathen Eagle, the 155 millions tweets that are posted on Twitter each day, a look at why technology isn't a panacea, and the future of near-field communication applications for smartphones."

VOA News
Freedom House: Internet Censorship Circumvention Tools Effective, Lack Security

"As the Internet plays a major role in organizing protests and disseminating information across the Middle East and other parts of the world, a report released Tuesday by the human rights organization, Freedom House, tells how Internet censorship circumvention tools are effective in navigating around censors.  But the report warns about the security implications of such software.

The report gives Internet users guidelines for choosing effective and easy to use circumvention tools in countries with high degrees of Internet censorship.”

International Alert
The Complexity of Resource Governance In a Context of State Fragility: The Case of Eastern DRC

“A host of publications over the last decade have highlighted the important role played by artisanal and small-scale mining of coltan, gold and cassiterite in the ongoing conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), yet there is still little awareness of the modus operandi of the various actors involved in the exploitation and trade of these minerals. It is vitally important that initiatives aimed at reforming the artisanal mining industry are based on a thorough knowledge of the political, economic and social dynamics at the grassroots level. This research report analyzes the trading networks within the mining sector and their links to military, economic and political actors in eastern DRC, focusing on the provinces of North and South Kivu, and Ituri District in Orientale Province.”

World Press Freedom Day
Looking Forward to World Press Freedom Day 2011 

"The United States welcomes the establishment of the World Press Freedom Day 2011 website, and hopes that individuals around the world take time to reflect upon and discuss the important role a free press has in open, democratic societies and aspirants.  All of us benefit from the incredible sacrifices journalists and citizen reporters make in the quest for freedom of expression.

We look forward to hosting World Press Freedom Day 2011 in Washington, DC, working with our partners: the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the Center for International Media Assistance at the National Endowment for Democracy, IREX, and the United Nations Foundation.  This year’s World Press Freedom Day focuses on the theme 21st Century Media:  New Frontiers, New Barriers."