These are some of the views and reports relevant to our readers that caught our attention this week.
"In 1999, half of the world had either never used a phone or had to travel more than two hours to reach the nearest one. Years later, mobile devices are being used in extremely innovative ways to connect and empower people around the world.
'It's not about being connected,' said Larry Irving, co-founder of the Mobile Alliance for Global Good, at the 2012 Social Good Summit on Sunday. 'It's about being connected with a purpose.'" READ MORE
A New Role for Citizens in Public Procurement
"Globalisation has the potential to raise living standards for citizens around the world, as well as bearinthe risk of excluding people from those benefits. Ensuring that globalisation contributes to a more equitable and sustainable form of economic growth requires the participation of citizens in monitoring how the global economy is changing and how it impacts the life of people.
The Arab Spring has shown the power of people in their potential to change political systems. Transparency International, the global civil society organisation leading the fight against corruption, aspires to support the emergence of a broad-based social movement standing up to corruption, especially where it violates human rights and threatens the most vulnerable. In Transparency International’s Strategy 2015, we underline that sustainable change requires broad public support. A widespread public engagement will reinforce the demand for solid institutions and provide a strong mandate for political leadership to succeed in their commitments.” READ MORE
Mobile phones and SMS: some data on inclusiveness
"I just came across some interesting analysis in a study about SMS usage among low-income populations in Asia, by Juhee Kang (Michigan State University) and Moutusy Maity (Indian Institute of Management Lucknow). The study uses data collected through a survey conducted in 2011 with 9,066 low-income mobile phone users (bottom of the pyramid) from Bangladesh, Pakistan, India, Sri Lanka and Thailand.
Some of the numbers provided should serve as a reminder that having a mobile phone does not necessarily mean that a person uses SMS. In other words, if you think your project is inclusive "because it uses SMS" and "nearly everybody has a mobile phone", think twice: there's a chance your project is not as inclusive as you’d like to think." READ MORE
Center for Global Development
Corruption and Development
"Pogo famously said: "We have met the enemy and he is us." That thought underpins my conversation with CGD senior fellow Bill Savedoff on corruption and development. Bill joined me last week after hosting a roundtable discussion with two anti-corruption experts who have recently published books on the issue, Frank Vogl, author of Waging War on Corruption and Laurence Cockcroft, author of Global Corruption Money, Power, and Ethics in the Modern World. In our conversation, Bill draws on the key ideas in these two books to unpack the various ways of thinking about—and addressing—corruption in development. We also discuss three emerging areas of CGD work on the issue, each of which focuses on the policies and practices of the rich and powerful—in global terms, us.
I start with a seemingly simple question: 'How much money that should have gone to development is wasted each year by corruption?'" READ MORE
“MissionMode Solutions is proud to announce EarShot, a new mobile crisis communications application that is the first to feature rich, two-way communications through multimedia and geographic location services. It gives organizations the ability to be more proactive in dealing with critical situations, which reduces the impact of crises. EarShot is also the only crisis communications app that works even when voice, SMS and email channels are not functioning.
Obtaining on-the-scene intelligence through EarShot enables organizations to quickly assign personnel to the right tasks and more effectively resolve the crisis. In many cases, having eyewitness information can prevent a situation from escalating into a crisis. According to the Institute for Crisis Management, 61% of crises start small and have the potential to be fixed before they escalate into a more serious situation.” READ MORE
"I am Dennis Israelski of InSTEDD and our work in Southeast Asia began in 2007, following Larry Brilliant's TED prize in 2006, with the support of founding grants from Google.org and the Rockefeller Foundation.
These grants were originally intended to support the design and development of information communication technologies (ICT) for better surveillance and response to disease outbreaks in the Mekong Sub-region of Southeast Asia - a hot zone for emerging infectious diseases. Our purpose in coming to Southeast Asia was to serve as a developmental partner of the Mekong Basin Disease Surveillance Network (MBDS).
Landscaping trips to multiple countries in the region were undertaken before we decided to base our operations in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. We chose Cambodia to be close to the Cambodian CDC, the lead for ICT strategy for the MBDS Network.” READ MORE