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Vol. IV No.12

The first monthly magazine on ICT4D

December 2006

Story telling for knowledge sharing - iConnect series Rural access in Africa and Latin America

Information for development

Community radio combating HIV/AIDS Desh Pardesh Radio Programme, Nepal

Stop AIDS - Keep the promise Youth and ICT



ISSN 0972 - 804X



knowledge for change

knowledge for change

Inviting all mobile service providers and ecosystem players to show your commitment to development at

6-8 February, 2007

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Vol. IV No. 12


December 2006

19 News

O pportunities for

D igital A sia



Alcan Prize for Sustainability, 2006 An enduring task of learning


Community radio- freedom of expression Civil expression in lead Ajitha Saravanan


Crafties youth initiative for rural communities A youth affair for tackling HIV/AIDS Chinyere Mbachu


Desh Pardesh Radio Programme, Nepal Community radio combating HIV/AIDS Khagendra Subha





Bytes for All


What’s on


In Fact

Latha Jagannathan

HIV prevalence and need based resources



Youth and ICT

2nd Global Forum on Business Incubation, India Incubating the spirit of innovation

Stop AIDS - Keep the promise Lady Murrugarra, Paco Prieto, Alina Anglas

15 ICT initiatives of Sudiksha HIV education and e-Learning Sandhya Ramachandran

42 Lifelines India

Voices to bridge the knowledge gap Anuradha T.N.

43 ICTD project newsletter

Story telling for knowledge

31 sharing

Rural access in Africa and Latin America Stories by: Ramata Soré, Janet Kwami, Almahady Moustapha Cissé, Aloyce Menda, Davis J. Weddi, Wyson Sinkondyobwe, Christian B. Espinosa

News Search ICT4D news by date in the sectors of governance, health, education, agriculture and so on.

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Cover image credit: Positive Women’s Network

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i4d Editorial Calendar 2007 Month



Malaysian ICT for Development


eAsia Conference curtain raiser special + Communities of Practice in Telecentres


Human Rights and eAsia conference report special


Community Radio and Gender special


Promoting innovations, role of ICTs in SMEs


Lead up to GK 3 - Emerging Technologies


ICTs for livelihoods/wealth creation (BPO/KPO/Cyber cafes/Kiosks)


Government investments in ICT4D (Review of CSC, India Programme)


Lead up to GK 3 - Emerging Markets


Internet Governance


Lead up to GK 3 - Emerging Leaders in ICT4D



i4d | December 2006

 Editorial Information for development

Healing touch with ICT

ADVISORY BOARD M P Narayanan, Chairman, i4d Chin Saik Yoon Southbound Publications, Malaysia Karl Harmsen United Nations University Kenneth Keniston Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA Mohammed Yunus Grameen Bank, Bangladesh Nagy Hanna e-Leadership Academy, University of Maryland, USA Richard Fuchs IDRC, Canada Rinalia Abdul Rahim Global Knowledge Partnership, Malaysia Walter Fust Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, Switzerland Wijayananda Jayaweera UNESCO, France EDITORIAL BOARD Akhtar Badshah, Frederick Noronha EDITORIAL TEAM Editor Ravi Gupta Editorial Consultant Jayalakshmi Chittoor Sr Assistant Editor Saswati Paik Assistant Editor Dipanjan Banerjee

We are at the end of another year and i4d is again bringing the issue on ICT and HIV/AIDS in response to the interest shown by our enthusiastic authors and readers. We couldn’t escape this issue as we are from South Asia, a heterogeneous and highly mobile region where HIV epidemic is severe in magnitude and scope. Few days back, an evidence of social boycott of a family in an Indian village was being shown on one of the Indian television channels. The reason behind this social boycott is detection of HIV positive in one of the family members. The social boycott involves keeping the family deprived from all public amenities, all public places, and all community activities. This evidence and many such evidences prove that HIV/AIDS is a social issue. Most of us know that in South Asia, most severe epidemics occur in parts of India, at least 60 percent of all people with HIV in Asia are living in India. But there is lack of proper communication for awareness generation and information sharing. Communication and information can help to HIV/AIDS understanding and prevention. As a part of this society, each of us is responsible to share our knowledge and to enlighten the society through knowledge sharing and proper information generation.

Research Associate Ajitha Saravanan Designer Bishwajeet Kumar Singh Web Programmer Zia Salahuddin Group Directors Maneesh Prasad, Sanjay Kumar i4d G-4 Sector 39, NOIDA, UP, 201 301, India Phone +91 120 250 2180-87 Fax +91 120 250 0060 Email Web Printed at Yashi Media Works Pvt. Ltd. New Delhi, India i4d is a monthly publication. It is intended for those interested and involved in the use of Information and CommnicationTechnologies for development of underserved communities. It is hoped that it will serve to foster a growing network by keeping the community up to date on many activities in this wide and exciting field. i4d does not necessarily subscribe to the views expressed in this publication. All views expressed in this magazine are those of the contributors. i4d is not responsible or accountable for any loss incurred directly or indirectly as a result of the information provided.

ICTs are opening fresh pathways for transforming the way we live, act, think, learn and communicate. It has the potential to contribute to the construction of true knowledge societies based on the sharing of information and incorporating all sociocultural and ethical dimensions of sustainable development. Now we must think of the ways of using ICT so that it can contribute to the construction of true knowledge societies based on the sharing of information and incorporating all socio-cultural and ethical dimensions of sustainable development. This issue of i4d has tried to act as a platform for knowledge sharing. It has compiled the activities related to awareness generation and knowledge sharing with the help of ICT. Hope the experiences shared through the contents will help many of us to explore more about using ICT as a tool to remove the blind beliefs regarding HIV/ AIDS so that it exists no more as a ‘social curse’. Let us hope for a better tomorrow. Wish all of our readers and authors a very happy new year 2007.

Centre for Science, Development and Media Studies, 2006 Except where otherwise noted, this work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 License

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November 2006 |

Ravi Gupta





Civil expression in lead November 16, 2006 is a memorable day to the history of broadcast in India. On this day, the Government of India (GOI) has legitimised community radio in the country, allowing civil society organisations, NGOs, and other non-profit organisations, to apply for community radio licenses, by a cabinet decision. India is the first country in South Asia to have a separate policy for community radio.

Looking back Invention of radio by Guglielmo Marchese Marconi of Italy, during the last decade of the 19th century, (initially known as ‘wireless telegraphy’) made a revolutionary impact, with its effect of consolidation of communities and exercise of visualisation, on mankind. India, not only has a long history of radio broadcasting, there are also remnants of Community Radio (CR) embedded within. Indian Broadcasting Company was the first broadcast unit set with transmitters from the cities of Bombay (presently known as Mumbai) and Calcutta (presently known as Kolkata) in 1927. The Company was later nationalised as Indian Broadcasting Service (IBS) in 1930. Simultaneously, CR also emerged in early twenties, but all on experimental basis. In 1936, the IBS was renamed as All India Radio (AIR) and it continued with the same name despite the official change of name as ‘Akashvani’ in 1957. It provides broadcasting at three levels – national, regional and local. Though AIR broadcast different programmes to accommodate different segments of the society, socio-economic and cultural aspects - both at the national and regional level, the structure of AIR and the philosophy behind its broadcasting remained largely top-down approach, giving little space to take opinion/ feed back from individuals, groups and audience.

Laws recognising expression In 1995, Supreme Court of India declared ‘airwaves’ to be as public property, to be


utilised for promoting public good and ventilating plurality of views, opinions and ideas. This judgment held that the ‘freedom of speech and expression’ guaranteed by Article 19(1)(a) of the Indian Constitution includes the right to acquire and disseminate information with a concern for public good. In 1998, the Milan Declaration on Communication and Human Rights has emphasised for international recognition of the community broadcasting which guarantees freedom of opinion and expression and the freedom to receive and impart information and ideas through any media and regardless of frontiers. From 2000 onwards, GoI has allowed private parties in the broadcasting sector. In 2002, under the Community Radio Policy, government has announced the grant of license for CR stations to be started by educational institutions. The main objectives imbibed in the initiative are: (i) enhancing participation of the people in the development process, (ii) capacity building in rural areas, through education, (iii) providing opportunities to the people to upgrade their skills and enhance their creative talents, (iv) preserving and promoting the traditional wisdom, knowledge and skills, thereby helping to promote and project the local language, arts, craft, culture and traditions, (v) bring within easy reach of the rural population, topical information in areas of agriculture, social welfare, education, health and environment, and (vi) to help in creating rural networks for the rural cottage and village industry.

Civil bodies and CR India’s first CR station became operational on February 1, 2004 at Anna University, Chennai. But the CR licenses remain prohibited to different private sector actors viz. SHGs, NGOs, etc. There was a constant demand from such groups for expanding the scope of CR as they are working on welfare and development activities, moving closely with rural and grass root communi-

India is the first country in South Asia to have a separate policy for community radio. ties. In response to such long standing demand, on 16th November 2006, the GoI has granted limited permissions to ‘civil society and voluntary organisations, State Agriculture Universities (SAUs) institutions, Krishi Vigyan Kendras, Registered Societies and Autonomous Bodies and Public Trusts registered under Societies Act or any other such act relevant for the purpose’. It comes with certain restrictions on airing news and current affairs by the NGOs and insists that the broadcast should be relevant to the educational, developmental, social and cultural needs of the community. The grant comes as a welcoming feature for such organisations to render their service better by broadcasting their own programmes by disseminating the information and keeping the transparency of their work nature by actively engaging the interaction of the community, which they are serving. It allows to fill the gap between the public and government. Moreover, it would be a useful mechanism to address socio-economic and cultural issues, which will be useful for their empowerment, in a particularly multicultured, linguistic and religious society like India. Its importance in calamities and disaster management cannot be undermined. Being a cost-effective technology, even cheaper than landlines, CR is the only source to keep the public informed, where illiteracy is also wide prevailing.  Ajitha Saravanan,

i4d | December 2006


A youth affair for tackling HIV/AIDS Nigerian youth are affected the most by the HIV/AIDS pandemic and, despite the daunting fact, no concrete programme exists in the nation for youth to build leadership capacity and advocacy in the area of HIV/AIDS prevention

Chinyere Mbachu Programme manager/Team leader Crafties Youth Initiative, Orlu Nigeria

December 2006 |

Nigerian youth are affected the most by the HIV/AIDS pandemic, robbing the nation of future leaders. In Nigeria, youth account for over 30 percent of all HIV/AIDS cases. HIV prevalence among the age of 1519 year olds is 5.9 percent.The fastestgrowing rate of HIV infections globally is among youth between the ages of the 15 and 24 and now account for 60 percent of all new infections in Nigeria. Despite these daunting statistics, no concrete programmes exist in Nigeria for youth to build leadership capacity and advocacy in the area of HIV/ AIDS prevention by providing opportunities for young people to gain and expand their skills as educators, researchers and advocates.

Crafties and its initiatives Crafties Youth Initiative (www.crafties. is a not-for-profit, non-governmental and youth led organisation founded by Chukwuemeka Vincent Chukwuemeka (CVC) in 2004 after a youth internship with the Global Knowledge Partnership (GKP). The initiative is a product of a deep interest in digital designs/graphics, Information and Communications Technology; their applications, enhancement, development and alternatives for youth. The conception of this movement was due to the fact that, Nigerian youth and young women are technologically backward in the aspects of creativity, health, education and leadership roles in this 21st century/Computer Age. It is with respect to the inefficiencies of its youth and young women in technology that CVC, through his sustainable/creative abilities and God’s inspiration in line with his team has evolved Crafties Youth Initiative for empowering people, improving lives, creating digital opportunities and reducing poverty among the people of the nation.

Vision, mission and programmes The vision of the initiative stands to build a nation reigning with inspired youths for excellent digital creativity by A.D. 2015. The target of its mission is to achieve creativity in leadership, in social values, moral values, design, Information and Communication Technologies. The main objectives in the line are as follows• To provide to the community, the talents, geared positively to help; improve lives, reduce poverty, empower youths, create employment opportunities among the youths, and foster national unity/ understanding, • To help build-up human capital capacity by empowering technologically, the youths for; the development of businesses and social economic growth, • To help fellow youths develop the skills that will improve the collection and publication of data, document, and disseminate information on current health, education and economic realities in the communities.  Programmes • W-shell: Introduces youth to the basics of computer, and web designing as a tool for learning, and preparations for carrier opportunities, • A-shell: Involves a good knowledge of architectural designs and its applications, • G-shell: Offers the basics of graphics editing and animations and the pleasure to learn how to design logos, calendars, and cards of any type, • X-shell: Gives youth the opportunity to enter into the world of youth and, tackling the social scourges of youth (HIV/AIDS, Unemployment) through the organisation of seminars, editorials, publications and, enlightenment/ awareness campaigns.


• R&D Plan: The culmination of each session will be the production of a research and development plan by the youth. The research and development plan will be created using PowerPoint. • Communication Skills: There will be an increase in the verbal and written communication skills in youth participants through appreciating other cultures and project collaboration.


Approach towards fighting HIV/AIDS HIV/AIDS is still seen as a social stigma in Nigeria, like many developing worlds. Education is clearly a social vaccine to the prevention of HIV/AIDS. Nigerian youth are the most affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic, robbing the nation of future leaders. Unfortunately, educational institutions in Nigeria have not made it a priority to educate young people about the rapid spread and prevention of the disease. Preventative education has clearly been seen lacking and the information that is available is only accessible to the less than 30 percent of Nigerian youth that attend secondary schools. This is why a comprehensive education programme, addressing all reproductive health issues (of which HIV/AIDS is an integral part), must be implemented in order to curb the spread of HIV/AIDS amongst Nigerian youth. The main goals of the programmes also aims to: • Teach youth to use technology tools to collect and analyse data, document and disseminate information on current health, education and economic realities in their communities, • Increase the number of secondary school and university graduates from economically disadvantaged rural Nigerian communities, • Build educational capacity that increases the economic base of youth and families in economically disadvantaged rural Nigerian communities, • Strengthen the science and technology foundation of youth in economically disadvantaged rural Nigerian communities, • Foster cross-cultural global collaborations among youth and adults from diverse cultures.

The participation of Crafties Youth Initiative in the ICASA 2005 ( conference held in Abuja and AIDS 2006 conference ( held in Toronto Canada and the experiences the team gained during Skills Building workshops and High-Level Youth Leadership Forum have helped them in sharing practical skills related to HIV/AIDS. New approaches on preventing and mitigating the effects of HIV/AIDS have been explored, along with addressing social and economic factors, affecting young people’s lives and health. However, young people can play a greater role in influencing national and international policies and programmes by being more actively engaged in decision-making, implementation and accountability by: • Coordinating advocacy meetings and campaigns with state and local ministries of health, heads of hospitals, traditional/religious leaders and professional organisations to refine and document their perspectives on the spread of HIV/AIDS among Nigerian youth. • Creating, distributing, analysing and collating qualitative and quantitative data on questionnaires to the general public, hoteliers, laboratory scientists, heads of hospitals, religious, traditional leaders, healers and non-governmental organisations. This data will be disseminated to other non-profit and civil society organisations working on HIV/AIDS issues. • Conducting online research on the global, social, health and economic impact of HIV/AIDS.

Technology involved Youth are equipped to acquire the four skills through their participation in these programme. The skills are not taught during the academic school day and, the youth will have the opportunity to extend their learning from the classroom to real-world applications after school. The four skills are as follows: • Technology: Youth will acquire basic computer skills in Microsoft word, Powerpoint and Microsoft Excel. They will also learn how to do research on the Internet. • Science: The course will require youth to conduct extensive online research to learn about their subject matter (HIV/AIDS) and develop a research and development plan. The information would not be spelled out for the youth; rather they will learn how to discover it for themselves.


Crafties programmes on HIV/AIDS will continue to encourage changes in the educational curriculum of primary, secondary and university level to include modules on communicable diseases such as HIV/AIDS and launch various community-wide AIDS prevention programmess and counseling to those living with HIV/AIDS.  i4d | December 2006


Community radio combating HIV/AIDS Considering the developments till date it can be confidently stated that this radio initiative has managed to change people’s lives, link families separated by migration, and improve awareness about HIV/AIDS

Khagendra Subba Programme Coordinator Equal Access Nepal


Migration and health hazards Migration is a universal phenomenon. People leave their villages and migrate to other cities and countries to improve their opportunities. Migration often separates families for long stretches of time. It has both positive and negative aspects. While on the one hand, it enable people to live in new conditions and improve their and the families living standards. On the other hand, it has many negative implications such as being vulnerable to alcoholism and other drug addictions leading from the frustration of living in difficult conditions in an unknown setting away from the family. These addictions have serious implications for the person and the family in terms of financial burden and the physical and emotional trauma it poses. The baseline studies about Nepali migrants conducted by Tata Institute of Social Sciences (TISS), Mumbai, Sathi Nepal Project, a Mumbai based NGO, and Equal Access, in collaboration, revealed that most of the migrants face severe difficulty in finding employment in the new place. They live in poor housing condition, lacking basic facilities. The major share of their income is spent on sustenance and they manage to send only 1/3 of it to their families in Nepal. 74 percent of respondents were married men who remain away from their family for long stretch of time, 79% of the respondents said that they consumed paan (betel nut), guthkha (chewing tobacco), cigarettes, and alcohol. The respondents were within the age group 17-45 years from Nepalese migrant communities. Migration into Indian cities from Nepal is common. This trend is especially high in the Far-West part of Nepal. The study conducted by Family Health International in 2003 to study recent migration trends and risk behaviour among migrant Nepali men in Mumbai revealed that approximately

120,000 people from Nepal migrate annually in search of work. Most of the migrants from Far-West Nepal shift to Mumbai in India. New Era, a research organisation based in Nepal, conducted a study about the vulnerability of migrants from this area to contracting HIV/AIDS. The study revealed that almost 10 percent of the returnees from India (the majority being from Mumbai) were found to be HIV positive and a significant number of people suffered from other sexually transmitted infections (STIs). These alarming facts and figures show that there is an urgent need to spread the awareness about HIV/AIDS amongst migrants, their families, and the community.

Learning from Achham district The National Health Foundation (NHF), supported by Family Health International, took the lead in initiating information and community based education project on HIV/AIDS in October 2004 in the Achham District in Far-West Nepal. Equal Access, an international NGO, partnered with this project through the production of the Desh Pardesh (Home and Abroad) radio programme. In its approach, the project is aimed at reaching out to the migrants and their families both in Mumbai and Achham through the radio programme. In addition to these initiatives community mobilisation was carried out by NHF in Achham. In the initial phase, TISS (Tata Institute of Social Science) and Sathi Nepal set up outreach sites in the areas of Goregaon and Thane in Mumbai where most of the Nepali migrants from Achham and other Far-West districts reside. The first phase of the project involved establishing direct links with 15 outreach groups in Mumbai. Surya Poudel, Training and documentation Coordinator at Equal Access, was surprised with the number of Nepali migrants from Far-West i4d | December 2006

Nepal residing in Mumbai. He said, “They are all eager to listen to Nepali Radio programme, but it is non-available. During the training period, they learned to operate the receivers and were very happy listening to Nepali programmes through the satellite channel”. Back in Nepal, in the initial phase, 10 RLG (Radio Listener Group) sites in Kailali and Kanchanpur and 15 RLG’s in Achham were set up by Nepal Red Cross Society (NRCS) Kanchanpur and National Health Foundation (NHF), respectively. The 15 RLG sites in Achham were set up in its five VDC’s (Village Development Committees), Ridikot, Nuwathana, Mastamandu, Jalpadevii and Siddheswor. This was done through providing each RLG that was formed in these areas with a Worldspace radio receiver. Each group consists of 25 people, mostly women. There is one facilitator in the group who organises the listening sessions and facilitates the discussions on the issues raised in the programme. These RLG facilitators were trained to equip them with facilitation skills, operate the radio receiver, record the aired programme onto a cassette tape and re use it for the listening at convenient hours. The training imparted the participants with facilitation skills as well as technical know-how to operate the receivers. At the end of the training, each group carried a receiver running on a set of dry cells and patch antenna. Desh Pardesh, thus started broadcasting in Achham soon after the training. Every Friday, a fresh episode of Desh Pardesh radio programme was broadcast through Worldspace satellite channel from 12:00 to 12:30 day time so that RLG facilitators carry out the listening sessions and it will repeat on every Sunday at 12:30 to 01:00 pm. This programme contained drama, messages, interviews, and local songs from FarWest people’s voices and life experiences.

the findings with colleagues and counterparts. The team suggested a determined focus on service-based interventions including a logical link between delivery of information, education, and medical facilities made available in these villages. Mr. Deepak Deo Bhatta, Team Leader from FHI, acknowledged the urgency to deal with these issues and promised to take immediate action. In March 2006, after the production and broadcast of the 50 episodes of Desh Pardesh, Sanfebagar was visited once again. This trip was meant to be a refresher training for new participants as well as a follow up visit from the last time. In the year long gap since the last visit, it was found that four facilitators had left to pursue higher education or for new job opportunities. New facilitators had taken up their place from the community. There was a new Swasthya Sewa Kendra (VCT/STI centre) managed by NHF in collaboration with HASTI AIDS (a collaborative institution working on HIV/AIDS based in Kathmandu, Nepal) through the support of Global Fund set up in this area. In the interactions, it was learnt that people were much better informed and educated about the issues of HIV/AIDS. The new set up, Swasthya Sewa Kendra (health centre), has been conducting voluntary counseling and testing (VCT/STI) services for 30-50 people on a monthly basis. Referring to the data of September and October of 2005, Dr. Ranga Raj Dhungana, Executive Director of NHF highlighted, “There were 80 persons tested and found 13 of the cases are HIV positive. This is 16 percent of the total test and it was alarming”. These services have had a definite impact on raising the awareness of HIV/AIDS among people. However, it is a very touching sight to witness someone being revealed of his or her HIV/AIDS positive status.

Collective consciousness of NGOs

Encouraging results

Surprisingly it was found that nearly 20 NGOs alone in Sanfebagar, a local bazaar with settlement of around 250 households, was working around raising awareness about HIV/AIDS and disseminating information about the same. Most of them said that they are working in social and community mobilisation to reduce the chances of HIV/AIDS and to support migrants to remain safe and sound whilst they are working in India. Equal Access was too happy to share and discuss on their work experience with the fellow groups. Much excited about the level of intervention of local organisations in this area, Equal Access approached the community members. But, to utter dismay, it was found that most of the people were panic-stricken with the entire information overload as most of the families had at least one member working in Indian cities. The information imparted without having any practical consequence ; had taken the form of the myth that all the migrants from India are HIV/AIDS infected. They even named HIV/AIDS Bambyalo Rog (Mumbai disease). More than panic-stricken, these people were helpless. Even if they wished to have tests and ease out their doubts, they were not available, not even at Mangalsen District Hospital, four hours walking distance from Sanfebagar.

The hard work and dedication of the RLG facilitators in the area was gradually acknowledged. These facilitators have moved beyond the single village and initiated mobile listening camps where they disseminate information about the centre as well as raising awareness about other HIV/AIDS related issues. It has increased the number of listeners of the programme substantially as well as who come and visit the centre for tests and counseling. It was encouraging to see that the information delivered through the radio programme, Desh Pradesh, and the subsequent discussions held in the groups have helped to raise the awareness and led to actions including seeking services. Not only have the villagers been able to access services, they have also brought about the creation of new service centres in nearby villages too. This has helped them to seek services within their reach. The Desh Pardesh radio programme has now reached its 69th episode and is broadcast weekly. The broadcast through Radio Nepal, Bageswori FM and Saipal FM, and Worldspace satellite channel has reached across Nepal as well as outside the country, especially in Mumbai. In its maturity, Desh Pardesh has contributed to reach out to the people in the Far West of Nepal in their local language with stories from their own localities. There is still a long way to go, with wider coverage across Nepal and the need to constantly raise these issues, but considering the developments till date it can be confidently stated that this radio initiative has managed to change people’s lives, link families separated by migration, and improve awareness about the growing threat of HIV/AIDS. 

Unique approach Equal Access team returned to Kathmandu taking with many new experiences from Sanfebagar, Achham. But, lack of experience on adequate services available for the people regarding HIV/AIDS left desolate. Once back in Kathmandu, discussions were held based on December 2006 |





An enduring task of learning The Barefoot College, a social work and research centre at Tilonia, Rajasthan in India is a unique phenomenon. It is a place where one can learn by doing mistakes, where teacher and learner is the same person, where one is not penalised for the mistakes but encouraged to learn from it. It aims to develop rare qualities like humility, curiosity, risk taking capacity, and innovative spirit, to improvise and to constantly experiment. It’s a place where all are treated as equals and there is no hierarchy. Recently this college was in news for its international applause and recognition. Alcan Prize has been awarded for the college for its noble endeavouring tasks committed for knowledge and skill acquisition. It was selected from a field of almost 200 entries from 55 countries by an international adjudication panel of distinguished experts on sustainability. It is the third annual Alcan Prize for Sustainability, for making a valuable contribution to India’s rural and impoverished citizens, by providing with necessary and practical guidance and thereby bringing changes into the communities.

Alcan prize 2006 Alcan has created the Prize for Sustainability to honour and encourage outstanding contributions in the field of economic, environmental and social sustainability by nonprofit, non-government and civil society organisations. International Business Leaders Forum (IBLF) holds the responsibility for processing the Alcan Prize for Sustainability to ensure credibility and objectivity. The announcement of Alcan and the Prince of Wales International Business Leaders Forum (IBLF) US$1 million Alcan Prize for Sustainability for the year 2006 to India’s Barefoot College comes as a hope and inspiration for many to follow the footsteps of Barefoot.


Robert Davies, IBLF Chief Executive Officer stated that Barefoot College has created an inspirational ripple effect in rural India and communities in other countries through its innovative work in demonstrating how empowerment, grassroots technology and education enable people to promote sustainable communities and better control their destinies. According to David Runnalls, Chairman of the adjudication panel and President and CEO of International Institute for Sustainable Development, this college is a remarkable

organisation that impressed and inspired us with their sustainable impact on environmental, economic, social and cultural issues. They have affected great change through strong leadership and partnerships, which coupled with their grassroots approach serves to empower the poorest of the poor. As stated by Bunker Roy, Barefoot College Executive Director, Alcan Prize is a validation of the Barefoot College’s community-based model of development.

Barefoot –brainchild of Bunker Roy Bunker Roy who started the Barefoot College in 1972 has been recognised by the Schwab Founda-tion for Social Entrepreneurship of the World Economic Forum in Davos (2002) and by the Skoll Foundation (2005) as an ‘outstanding Social

Alcan Prize has been awarded to Barefoot College of India for its noble endeavouring tasks committed for knowledge and skill acquisition. Entrepreneur’. Bunker Roy was a man of exemplary vision. After his college education, he was into the service of rural communities. He initiated in building wells to cater the need of water for villagers. Moving closely with the rural communities in his early days, he came to understand that fathom of wisdom lies in villages with great potentials and skills for survival. He ushered a confidence in them to stand on their own, better served by their own practical and technical skills and thereby, developing their own technology infrastructures. The cooperation of villagers inspired him to establish Barefoot College based on the ideas in 1972. The college juxtaposes the traditional concept of the college where reading, writing, and achieving a formal degree give a meaning in conventional society. But Barefoot College values for the right kind of education based on observation and practical skills supported by enabling technologies to keep on refreshing the students. The College confers no degrees and classes usually take place at night in the villages, allowing members to do their day-to-day lives.  Source:, i4d | December 2006


Stop AIDS - keep the promise World AIDS Day, with the theme ‘accountability’ for the year, is gaining momentum merging with the youth movements

Lady Murrugarra Instituto de Medicina Tropical Alexander von Humboldt - UPCH, Peru

Paco Prieto Fundación CTIC, España

Alina Anglas Instituto de Educacióny Salud, Peru

December 2006 |

Lima-Peru saw a congregation of representatives of civil and state organisations of Peru and Latin American countries that work in the direction of prevention of HIV/AIDS among the young population in 21- 22nd of September 2006. An international encounter, ‘Adolescent, young and ICT in the fight against HIV/AIDS’ was the cause of gatheration. Representatives of Columbia, República Dominicana, Argentina, México, Nicaragua, Brasil, Bolivia and Ecuador graced the meeting with their respective presence to share their experiences. Representatives of organisations of Peru and Latin America, for which they work in the prevention of the HIV/AIDS among young population, were also present in the meeting where they reflected on the use of the ICT among the thematic tools to the fight against HIV/AIDS in Latin America. The event was jointly organised by the Institute of Health and Education and Ministry of Health in Perú. Institute for the Connectivity in the Américas (, ICA/ International Development Research Centre, IDRC Canada, were main sponsor of the event. The Institute for Connectivity in the Americas (ICA) has recognised the importance of promoting information and communication technology (ICT) for socioeconomic development and has acclaimed Canada’s contribution to the Summit. ICA plays a unique and important role in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) by bringing together stakeholders from different sectors to implement strategic networks and scaled-up innovative technology initiatives. ICA currently supports over 80 ICT for development initiatives in Latin America and the Caribbean. The activities can be classified into a number of sectors including: access and connectivity, education and capacity building, e-Governance/e-Government,

content and software, regional consultations and virtual networking, digital inclusion, e-Business, health, and policy and, regulation. The other reputed organisation, International Development Research Centre (IDRC) is a public corporation created by the Parliament of Canada in 1970 to help developing countries to use innovative technologies to sort out real solutions to overcome the social, economic, and environmental problems of the people. World AIDS Day contains the theme ‘accountability’ for this year. World AIDS Campaign is promoting this under the broader slogan ‘Stop AIDS - Keep the Promise’. Throughout the search of the sites, one will find important information about events, campaigns and materials for World AIDS Day besides reflecting on one’s self accountability, ‘what will you do?’

Objectives of the meet The main objectives of the meeting include to make a space of interchange between actors who nails on thematic aspects of health in Latin America and the Caribbean, to streamline the innovative strategies for the education and prevention of HIV/AIDS, to ensure the participation of adolescents and young people, in the use of ICT, to analyse the main experiences of the participants and other countries in the subjects and fundamental lines of the technologies of the Information and the Communications (ICT), and further, to identify the new tendencies and perspectives of the ICT and its range of impact on the humans and society, and to trim the motto of the encounter and its contribution to the sustainable development.

Millennium Development Goals: 2 and 6 Goal 2 of the Millennium Development


prevention’ will seek to influence policy makers as well as generate public opinion on the need to bridge the HIV prevention gap. Together, they seek to strengthen the movement and create the enabling environment which is required to achieve universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support.


Goals ( aims at universal primary education by 2015 and the indicators of Goal 6 include to ensure prevalence of use of condoms among the youth with comprehensive and correct knowledge of HIV/AIDS. Every day it happens that 6,000 young people between the age group of 15 and 24 years contract the pandemic HIV/AIDS. It shocking to learn that more than 2,000 infection cases are that of innocent children and mostly by vertical transmission (mother to child). Moreover, about 1,400 children and younger children of less than 15 years old die by causes related to the HIV/AIDS. Further, more than 15 million children have lost their mother or father, or both, by causes related to the epidemic. Across the world, a small but growing number of countries have reduced HIV prevalence through sound prevention efforts. However, in 2005, there were still 4.1 million new HIV infections with over 40 percent of new adult infections occurring among young people aged 15-24. According to latest estimates, HIV prevention services reach only one in ten of those most at risk. In an era where the world has committed to work towards universal access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support by 2010. There is clearly an urgent need to intensify HIV prevention efforts in both size and scale to halt growing infection rates and sustain the gains that have already been made in the AIDS response such as increased numbers of people on HIV treatment ( ). Aiming this, UNAIDS is ‘uniting for HIV prevention’ with others who share the goal – including civil society, treatment activists, the private sector and governments- to call for the global community to mobilise an alliance for intensifying HIV prevention.Thus 21st century is associated clearly with the construction of the denominated society of information, and in this frame, young people have assets and described roll to fulfill. The height of the ICT is significantly hitting the innovations and the developments that comes as a productive factor in the education system. The broad and inclusive grouping of organisations ‘uniting for


The HIV/AIDS can strike at the door of anyone, and that therefore; it seeks urgency to put joint efforts• Is indispensable to generate the bases for the establishment of strategic alliances between the public institutions and participant organisations of the civil society with a view to the implementation of joint initiatives or to the collaboration in concrete actions in strategies for the prevention of HIV/AIDS in the region, with use of the ICT. • To identify possibilities of collaboration between the Institute of Education and Health of Peru - IES- and other partners in Latin America for the retort and/or adaptation of the strategy Point J ( • To create a mass criticisms of experts working on thematic HIV/ AIDS and ICT, and feel the base of a potential network for the exchange of information and experiences. • The adoption of measures would be to encourage to facilitate the access to the Internet, and to increase in general the knowledge of the ICT. • The effective use of the technology would have to contribute to reinforce diverse forms of youthful participation. Special measures has to be adopted to connect with the young people in rural regions, considering that, the fast advances in the matter of wireless technology have done possible to surpass physical obstacles at a reasonable cost that represented the distance and the topography. To over come barriers like time factor the development of the infrastructure of the telecommunications in the rural regions needs to be fastend. • It has to be centered in increasing the help to the campaigns in schools and universities. It is urgent to enable the professors and, to grant technical and pedagogical endorsement to them. • To harness the educational directors and, the development of materials, resources that promote the active participation in the educative space in the prevention of HIV/AIDS and that are generated within the framework of the education. • Is urgent to have political public and aggressive actions, yet of fairness in the access of the ICT and its effective use. • It is essentially tries to conform human networks, with the support of the ICT that motivate and harness, in dynamic and systematic form, the interaction between the people, who fortify the generation, dissemination and exchange of information and knowledge based on the professional objectives, institutional and social in each context of an individual. i4d | December 2006




HIV education and e-Learning What often slips our attention is, that the ‘haves’ or the people who do have extensive access to ICT, don’t seem to be ‘more aware’ or ‘less prone’ to HIV!

What ICT can’t do We are all familiar with the term, ‘digital divide’ which splits the world into the ‘haves’ and ‘the have-nots’ in relation to Information and Communication Technology (ICT). What often slips our attention is, that the ‘haves’ or the people who do have extensive access to ICT, don’t seem to be ‘more aware’ or ‘less prone’ to HIV! It is important to highlight the absence of any correlation between ICT access and the probability of getting infected by HIV, right in the beginning of this article. This is because, there is a chance that the title of the article implies that e-Learning is a ‘magic wand’ which would make the problem vanish or to say the least, diminish! Though a passionate believer in ICT for learning and empowerment, I have no delusions about the potential of ICT. ICT is nothing more a tool. If used imaginatively and responsibly it can yield amazing results beneficial to humans. So having set the records straight, what can ICT really do for the HIV conundrum?

Challenges faced by educators

Sandhya Ramachandran Founder and CEO Sudiksha Learning Dimensions, Bangalore, India

December 2006 |

There is a lot of information ‘out there’ about HIV and AIDS. Media is replete with articles on the subject. Safe sex, risk behaviour, prevention of HIV infection or living with it ought to be common knowledge. However, there is a shocking level of ignorance among the public at large and youth in particular. A considerable amount of time, energy and money is spent by many organisations on HIV education. But it is a drop in the ocean. The inclusion of ‘Sex Education’ in mainstream curriculum is still hotly debated in many parts of the country. While the educators debate, nothing stops young people from exploration based

on half-baked knowledge. Ignorance and misinformation leads to distorted values, warped opinions and unnecessary moral positions among people. This creates an extremely unhealthy and dangerous society to live in with or with out HIV.

What ICT can do  Learning Content Today, ICT multimedia has the combined potency of movies, interactive games and educational experience. If the educational experience is designed scientifically, the initial perceptions transform into a learning engagement and the engagement process results in knowledge creation, attitude change and skills transformation. This applies to any subject area or domain and to any target audience. In a mass education environment, ICT helps the educators achieve, standardisation of the quality, correctness and completeness of content. Though the dynamics of learning vary from location to location, class to class and individual to individual, replication of the minimum levels of learning across the board becomes a lot simpler than relying on traditional methods.  Learning portals Further Internet, like HIV and life, is a great leveler. The Internet brings people from diverse socio-cultural, economic and geographic backgrounds together. It facilitates collaborative and peer-to-peer learning. Thus, ICT tools in the right hands have answers to the three basic issues related to learning viz. Quality of Content, Effective Information Dissemination and Effectiveness of Learning

Activities of Sudiksha At Sudiksha, it is believed that the single most important factor that improves the quality of life of an individual is education.


comfortable with; • The CD ROM is designed to address the learners’ cognitive domain (knowledge) and the affective domain (attitudes).

Use of the e-Content

If the learning experience is effective, there is a marked change or improvement in the ability of the individual to cope with life. The area of life impacted will depend on the domain of learning whether it is health care, environment, vocational training or other subjects. The learning experience determines the nature of impact on the life of an individual. There are two areas of Sudiksha’s work as outlined below.  Content development – The BMST Project The Bangalore Medical Services Trust is headed by Dr. Latha Jagannathan. The trust has many services for HIV testing, support, research and education. They conduct life skills based programmes on Reproductive Health, Sex and Sexuality and HIV/AIDS for schools. BMST conducts these programmes in partner schools directly and also train teachers and peer educators to deliver the programmes independently too. The curriculum has been put together in-house by the Trust under the expert guidance of Dr. Latha Jagannathan. Emphasis is laid equally on conveying correct scientific information to the learners and helping them developing life skills. The challenge for BMST was to rapidly build up delivery capabilities in order to cover a large number of schools through the programme. Further, teachers and peer educators had given them feedback that it was difficult to deal with the subject matter in certain sensitive areas. BMST believed that a CD ROM based Multimedia Teaching Aid would be the best solution to meet their objectives and overcome some of the challenge. Some of the design elements are described below.

Salient points of design • Cartoons, images and diagrams are extensively used to narrate the scientific aspects; • Balanced doses of humor are integrated into the content to lighten the mood while discussing very serious or sensitive topics; • Case studies and stories are presented through animated sketches of contemporary young people; • The style of language used is close to the language the youth are


• A trained teacher or peer educator uses the CD to facilitate the workshop sessions; • The case studies and activities in the CD allow teaming and group discussions; • When responses are fed into the system it provides appropriate feedback and rounds off the learning; • The CD ROM has call-for-action at strategic points where the eMail ids and telephone numbers of counselors are given. The feedback from the field has been largely positive on this title. Both teachers and learners have enjoyed the sessions. The activities on case studies on date rape, premarital sex and risky sexual behaviour were appreciated for their effectiveness in creating a framework for open discussion and debate. A few suggestions have come in to minimise dialogue delivery if possible.  e-Learning portal development Two projects, namely, Community Learning Portal and Continuing Education Portal, are underway in collaboration with two not-forprofit organisations. The features of these portals could include: • Learning Management System • Audio and video conferencing • Discussion threads • Questions and Answers by Experts • Online meetings for teachers / students / both • Online course delivery including graphics, text and audio • Dynamic content based on user authentication • Online tests and certification. • Local Language content These portals will bring together people from across the globe and from diverse socio-economic backgrounds. Not only can the users learn from these portals but also share experiences and learnings with others. Each authorised user can give relevant content and interact with other users through any of the formats listed above. This is a great way to get people to talk about subjects, which were once considered taboo. Consultancy and expert advice will be available at the click of the mouse.

What lies ahead… These are but small steps in an unimaginably big journey. Many organisations large and small are moving forward along these lines and more, using ICT in different creative ways. An interesting phenomenon is that many heterogeneous groups like ICT solution providers, healthcare providers, not-for-profit organisations, government and funding organisations are coming together with a shared vision and purposefulness. From the synergies that arise out of the diverse competencies, innovative new solutions arise. With millions of little fists pounding on the ‘rock’, we hope, that it will eventually crumble.  i4d | December 2006


Spreading awareness with ICTs Dr Latha Jagannathan Medical Director and Managing Trustee Bangalore Medical Services Trust & Research Institute, India

What are the main activities of you and your organisation, BMST associated with? Bangalore Medical Services Trust & Research Institute, known as BMST is a not-for-profit organisation of more than two decades, providing services in the areas of blood banking & transfusion, and STDs, HIV and AIDS awareness training, research, testing and counseling. It was established in 1984 by the Rotary Club of Bangalore and TTK & Company. The partners of BMST includes international, national organisations, state level agencies and organisations such as UNESCO, UNICEF, WHO, Levi Strauss (India), ICICI Ltd, TTK-LIG Ltd, National AIDS Control Organisation (NACO), Karnataka State AIDS Prevention Society (KSAPS), Department of State Education, Research and Training (DSERT) and National Service Scheme (NSS), Karnataka. What are the specific activities of BMST related to generating awareness for HIV/AIDS? Since its beginning, BMST has served the community in health awareness generation in various ways. In particular this included training of teachers for implementing LifeSkills based, HIV/AIDS programmes in December 2006 |

schools & colleges. It was 2004 when BMST demonstrated an HIV and AIDS preventive intervention strategy to enhance effectiveness of School AIDS Education Programmes (SAEP). The organisation used the Peers Educators Club concept in 51 selected high schools in Bangalore in the State of Karnataka (India). BMST, as a part of the programme has designed a scalable and sustainable version of the Peer Educators Programme. The implementation and monitoring of the programme in the State of Karnataka is being partnered by NSS, KSAPS and DSERT. TTK-LIG Ltd is supporting this project which is running for three years (2005-2008). What are the specific ICT based initiatives so far introduced by your organisation? As a part of the project mentioned above, a self-learning CD has been prepared which contains all basic information about HIV/ AIDS, its origin, causes, impact and prevention in a dialogue form in-between two animated characters, mother HIV virus and her kid. Our aim is to promote strong value-

The main problem is lack of coordination and co-operation among various organisations and also between private initiatives and government initiatives.

based and responsible behaviour among the youth and also, at the same time, to decrease the risk behaviour among the people which can result in HIV/AIDS. We are currently working on developing another module with audio-visual CD on reproductive health that is another most important part of health education. That CD will convey the important information on general health and hygiene, adolescent changes etc which should also be very useful for the school children and grass-roots community. Recently we have started another awareness generation programme called ‘Josh mein hosh’ (awareness in activity) in which we are using small cards with messages for the community regarding HIV/AIDS and its prevention. We have started distributing these cards in populous areas of Bangalore city on the World AIDS Day this year. This card contains a helpline number and one email ID where one can call or can mail at the given email ID for any information related with HIV/AIDS. What can be the role of ICT in HIV/AIDS awareness generation process? ICT can play a major role in spreading awareness among the young people about HIV/AIDS. Most times, their queries are not properly answered by the parents and teachers as they feel embarrassed to discuss issues related to reproductive health, sexual behaviour etc. Most adolescent children on the other hand, do not feel shy at all and actually want information about these topics. We therefore developed an inter-active audio-visual CD which uses interesting learning games etc to convey the right messages in an attractive and interesting manner. The teachers can overcome their shyness and will really love this programme and take part enthusiastically in this learning process.


As a part of Peer Educator’s Life Skills education programme, we have distributed the CDs, prepared in both English and Kannada language (the regional language of Karnataka State). It has been used very effectively by the Peer Educators in their HIV/AIDS awareness programmes especially to answer many and varied queries regarding this syndrome which the students otherwise rarely get the proper answers for. Such initiatives can generate more awareness generation at the community level and in this age of ICT, we must use ICT as a tool to convey such important messages to the grass-roots level people who really need the right information at the right time. Do you think that in the developing countries enough effort is being made for generating awareness about HIV/AIDS? No, it is not enough as of now. Much more ICT initiatives are required for the grass-roots level community. ICT tools make the communication and information generation process much easier and more effective. One can learn about the health issues like HIV/AIDS, reproductive health etc more easily at his/her own effort as it provides the opportunity for a self-learning process.

BMST whereas the CD was prepared with the technical help of Sudiksha. We spent many months in the preparation and refinement of the CD and showed it to several educationists, doctors and most importantly, students to get their inputs to improve it. The mother-child conversation in very simple language and the many games in it make it very interesting. Our CD and the manual which goes with it, discusses and brings out other factors like Low Self Esteem; Peer Pressure; Drug Use etc which impact on an otherwise responsible person and may make them have risk behaviour. In developing countries, where ‘digital divide’ is a main problem, how do you think that ICT can help the awareness generation process for such sensitive issues like HIV/AIDS? Despite having the problem of ‘digital divide’, ICT can help to generate and spread information through people and we strongly feel and believe that the youth of our society can strengthen the process if they get enlightened. We have seen that out trained Peer Educators from schools and colleges have taken the initiative to generate awareness through street plays etc at the grass-root community level. In this way, we can generate the awareness, if not directly, but indirectly through ICT. Any such programme needs the participation of the community and of course we need to involve as many people as possible into such programmes.

How was the Module on HIV & AIDS as a part of BMST’s life skills based adolescent health programme conceptualised? For more than 12 years now, we have been conducting training programmes for teachHow far ICT has been successfully ers, especially in six districts in Karnataka State, used so far in this sector in supported by DSERT. We had developed developing countries? and later refined several Life-Skills based There are lots of evidences in African counmodules for them. Three years ago, KSAPS tries where ICT has played a major role in also trained all teachers of the Government generating awareness. In India, programmes and Government-aided schools to conduct are being initiated at National and regional HIV/AIDS awareness programme for higher level by NACO, State AIDS Societies, several secondary school students. But our own ex NGOs as well as international organisations perience as well as that of KSAPS found that many of which are effectively spreading most of the teachers feel shy to discuss these sensitive issues. We felt that some kind of audio-visual media, which awareness. For example, I must mention about the programme of can convey the required messages without creating any embarrass- ‘Heroes’, an NGO which is trying to get radio, TV & other media ing situation for them, was necessary as a class-room teaching aid. to include HIV/AIDS awareness as part of their every-day Sudiksha, another NGO, based in Bangalore, provided the techni- programme. cal support to convert our concept into an inter-active CD. The basic content containing all relevant information was supplied by What initiatives are required for more effective use of ICT for HIV/AIDS awareness generation? The main problem is the lack of coordination and co-operation Information on HIV/AIDS online among the various organisations and also between private initiaThis year, the World Bank has prepared a special section online tives and government initiatives. Proper coordination, and sharing with useful information about HIV/AIDS in South Asia. One of experiences and resources can make the ICT initiatives more can learn more about latest data and analysis on HIV/AIDS, the successful.  state of the epidemic in Afghanistan, Bhutan, Bangladesh, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka and also World Bank efforts to help fight HIV/AIDS in the region. Website for these information is:


Contact details: Bangalore Medical Services Trust & Research Institute, New Thippasandra Main Road, HAL 3rd Stage, Bangalore 560075, Karnataka (India). i4d | December 2006

Vol. IV No. 12

December 2006

Information for development


Help line services for farmers British Telecom and Cisco have launched a unique phone-help-line service for farmers in India. A new phone based information service named Lifelines India (Ek Duniya Sawal Jawab) will empower farmers across the country about the bumper crop in next season. This would be the next tool for second Green Revolution in India. BT has launched the new service system with the support of Cisco and OneWorld Charity for 150 villages of Bundelkhand and Himachal Pradesh, India. All the farmers can dial on the Lifeline number 022-39116000 and record their query on voice mail system. OneWorld will pick up the call and give necessary feedback from panel of agriculture and veterinary experts from ICT. It would cost INR 5 per call to the farmers. The Indian Society for Agribusiness Professionals, Delhi and Tarahaat, Jhansi has turned their network to provide right information and advice to farmers. Later on, this service would be expanded over more villages. Lifelines India is claiming that their model is unique and different. BT has launched the project with the support of TechMahindra.

Community radio

Teaching value of community radio by YCMC in rural Bangladesh A UNESCO-supported Youth Community Multimedia Centre (YCMC) is teaching people in rural areas about the value of community radio, using a combination of theatre and ICT in Sitakund sub-district in Bangladesh. Volunteers of the YCMC recently parDecember 2006 |

ticipated in a ten-day training workshop on ‘Forum Theatre’. Forum Theatre uses ICT in the forms of radio, television and telephone to enable live and runtime feedback to be received. This kind of approach makes people more aware of existing local issues and practices; it raises awareness about the lack of access to mainstream media; and it demonstrates how local communities can use community radio and other media to change their society. UNESCO’s International Programme for the Development of Communication (IPDC) and the International CMC Initiative, supported by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation provided support to the establishment of the community multimedia centre. CMC uses the local cable network for content dissemination, reaching about one thousand households in Sitakund and it has plans to set up loudspeakers directly from the studio. YCMC volunteers will generate locallyrelevant content in the local language (Bangla) daily for one and half hours.


rce me om e-C

Vietnam Trade Ministry promotes e-Banking Service in Vietnam The Trade Department Ministry of eCommerce hosted the seminar on e-Banking and on the five online payment methods currently used in domestic market like credit card, debit card, electronic cheque, electronic box and e-Mail payment. According to the Ministry of Trade’s Department Report, still customers prefer to pay in cash while shopping instead of using e-Banking service. There are 1000 enterprises across the country and only 2025 percent of respondents have their own website, while 3.2 percent respondents offer online payment service. According to Nguyen Bao Hoang, managing general

partner at IDG Ventures Vietnam, electronic payment service is still in developing position in Vietnam. Once the electronic payment service is perfect, the number of e-Commerce transaction would be increased. Vietnamnews

ThinkSupport launches new web hosting plan for accounts ThinkSupport (, web hosting support and online service provider has launched new plan for account transfer and migration. ThinkSupport’s new grid based solution will cover all major billing system, migrate client accounts and billing data. According to Sameer Kulkarni, VP of operations at ThinkSupport, user can download the files through FTP to their local system and upload it again to the new server. Whir News



eProcurement programme can change UK Government The e-Sourcing Managed Service is improving the efficiency of public sector buyers’ management of potential and contracted suppliers. Out of fifteen UK public sector projects, it is one of the highlighted project in the National Audit Office report named ‘Delivering Successful IT Enabled Change’. The report reflects the key factors of the project. A director of Sourcing and Outsourcing Services Limited (SOSL) has led the change management programme and implantation of the eSourcing Managed Service on behalf of OGC BravoSolution UK is providing the service, which combines a number of specialist web-based procurement tools to allow UK public sector buyers to tender, evaluate,


The i4d News

ICT Award for bridging the digital divide has won the prestigious African ICT Achiever 2006 Award for bridging the digital divide in Africa. The work of includes the translation of computer software into 11 official languages of South Africa by using local translator and creating the first South African keyboard. According to Dwayne Bailey, Founder and Managing Director of, said “as 2006 is the year of African languages, it seems only right that an organisation adressing language issues in ICT should win the ICT achievers awards for briding the digital divide”. Open 2.0 (R367.85)- office suite comes in 11 official languages, including spell checkers for Afrikaans and South African English. Africans can be proud of their language getting digitalized and going online. negotiate, award and manage contracts online. After the launching of programme, till 40 organisations or groups in central and local government, health, broadcasting, sport, transport, housing and emergency services have used the eSourcing tools and 15,000 suppliers have registered.

NIC plans to build e-Gov portal for Vermont NIC Inc. is going to build and manage an eGovernment portal for the state of Vermont through a six year contract of worth $4 million. The Vermont Information Association, NIC unit will manage the contract from its office in the state capital of Montpelier. According to contract terms, the association will supply the infrastructure to develop, maintain and host the state’s official e-Government portal. NIC will use a selffunding model in which transaction fees generate revenue to cover the development and operational costs. The three-year base contract has renewal; options for additional three years to cover the service through 2012. Currently NIC is managing state portal and providing e-Government services for 19 states. Washington Technology

Brunei Government requires ICT trained manpower The Brunei Government is conducting manpower planning exercise to ensure an adequate supply of ICT trained manpower for development and maintenance of eGovernment initiatives. According to the Dato Paduka Haji Yusoff Hamid, the acting Minister of Com-


munications has highlighted the exercise at the SAP IT Seminar for Brunei Darussalam jointly held by SAP Malaysia and Brunei’s leading IT Telecom systems integrators and e-Business enabler, KPF Comserve Sdn Bhd. Authority for Infocommunications Technology Industry of Brunei Darussalam (AiTi) is supporting the seminar and Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD) will provide the training in key SAP applications for public sector, enterprise resource planning and supply chain management as well as in basic programming languages. The e-Government programme will provide all appropriate information and online services. The ‘AiTi Infocomm Competency Training Programmes’ will provide a significant growth in local talent and ICT resources.


FOGSI launches satellite based education programme for Indian medical colleges The Federation of Obstetric and Gynaecological Societies of India has collaborated with the Indian Space Research Organisation for the satellite based education programme for medical students. Indian Space Research Organisation has launched the satellite based education programme for medical students and doctors to update their latest information. According to the FOGSI president Duru Shah, FOGSI has launched a satellite based education programme for doctors and medical students in over 100 municipal and government medical colleges of the country. Initially, Cosme Farma Laboratories Limited (CFLL) will install satellite dishes with

technical support from ISRO. FOGSI doctors will develop the course content and distributed live through satellite to over 100 municipal and government medical colleges of India. The satellite centres would be launched in medical colleges of Jaipur, Jammu, Gorakhpur, Patna, Guntur, Manipal, Vadodara and Goa.

IDB and OLPC signed an agreement to promote ICT in education programmes The Inter-American Development Bank announced that the bank has signed an agreement with One Laptop Per Child association (OLPC), which will facilitate to support the development and mainstreaming 1 to 1 computing in Latin American and the Caribbean schools. According to this agreement, both parties will contribute for the development of the Latin America and the Caribbean through the installment of individual computer devices. Both companies will contribute for regional and national policy dialogue, aimed for adopting computers in education, technical assistance, design and support for evaluation activities, content development tailor-made to the 1 to 1 learning environment, design of effective strategies to integrate individual computer devices in the daily lives of children, both at home and in school and design of effective approaches to supporting schools and teachers implementing 1 to 1 computing programmes. OLPC is a non-profit corporation, aimed to design, manufacture and distribute inexpensive network. While IDB is the oldest and largest bank and aimed to promote social and economic development in both the countries.


Microsoft launches ICT BestPractice Forum for Africa Development Microsoft Corporation is launching a series of best practice ICT sharing forums to help the African Government in accelerating the use ICT solution for the development of local growth and development. Microsoft announced about the launching of ICT forums during the EUAfrica Business Forum organised by the European Commission. The company is helping public sector institutions to deliver i4d | December 2006

The i4d News more efficient services to tackle with critical challenges like healthcare, education and infrastructure. Microsoft is partnering with African governments and the global development community to create innovative networks for developing Africa. According to Soumana Sako, Executive Secretary of the African Capacity Building Foundation, these forums are good opportunity for ACBF to explore the skills of ICT in education and healthcare programmes. The ICT Best Practices Forums will take place across each of the East, West, Central and Southern African sub-regions.

Commonwealth invites new ideas for ICT development The Commonwealth Secretariat is inviting governments, NGOs and academic institutions to submit their project proposals for the development of ICT skills. The call for the project is coming on behalf of the Commonwealth Connects Programme, an initiative to improve ICT skills in the Commonwealth and use as tools for development. The Commonwealth Connects Programme is coordinated by the Commonwealth Connects Secretariat within the Commonwealth Secretariat’s Governance and Institutional Development Division. The Commonwealth has launched its first ICT based project ‘Rebuilding After the Tsunami: Using ICTs for Change’, which offers the web development, eCommunication services and training to organisations working on Tsunami rehabilitation and reconstruction efforts in Sri Lanka and India. Other Commonwealth Connects project involves the radio based business training for Cameroon’s women to help them in micro-enterprise. all


Mediasite helps diabetes patients through online technology A new online communication system will link Charleston Area Medical Centre with more than 7000 doctors of the state. Wisconsin-based Sonic Foundry Inc. has developed the new technology named Mediasite, especially for diabetic patients. The technology will work for anyone with broadband connection. CAMC doctors will give seminars, lectures on different topics like diabetes, osteoporosis and state can watch in real time. Previously, CAMC was December 2006 |

Nationwide wireless network for Singapore Singapore government aims for a nationwide Wi-Fi initiative. The Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) and the Finance Ministry are taking initiative steps for making government services more accessible by using Internet. IDA is planning to set up 22 new CitizensConnect Centres in community centres and clubs. Each centre has two computers and an officer to help user to pay their government bills, renew or apply for HDB season parking tickets and other services. The IDA’s initiative, named Wireless@SG will provide free Wi-Fi access to all Singapore residents and visitors from overseas. IDA has awarded Firetide Inc., a developer of wireless multi-service mesh technology and its partner iCell Network, for building the eastern portion of Singapore with Wi-Fi technology. iCell will use Firetide’s wireless mesh network technology to create a high-capacity wireless infrastructure for the thousands of new Firetide access points needed for the area.

using the technology of old version, now new technology will connect 7000 doctors with patients. This is the first educational programme for diabetes Daily Mail

BL Healthcare launches TVx system BL Healthcare is going to releases a system, which will allow doctors to monitor physiological parameters of chronic illness through wireless medical devices. BL Healthcare’s TVx system will enable patients to hold 2-way video conferences with doctors and nurses by using their television as the display. An inbuilt video camera and remote control with microphone will allow patients for video conferencing with their doctors. Patients can directly interact with their doctors and can immediately get their answer. The TV based display will allow patient to review the on demand information and receives answers from doctors and nurses. The BL Healthcare remote management systems reduce the medical cost for patients.


Hutch provides Microsoft’s Windows Live Services on mobile phones Hutchison Essar and Microsoft announced for a broad scale mobile services alliance in India. Both companies are agree to work together to provide mobile search facility and other key Windows Live Services to more than 21 million Hutch subscribers. Hutch customers in India would be able to search and access mobile content, infor-

mation in one-stop integrated search powered by Windows Live Search for mobile phones. This search engine will include news, entertainment, information and World Wide Web. Hutch users would be able to search for local business listings and services for major Indian cities. Microsoft will provide Hutch’s mobile portal named ‘Planet Hutch’, and manage Hutch’s Fun Cards platform. It also includes Windows Live Services like Windows Live Messenger, Windows Live Mail and Windows Live Spaces. Managing director of Hutchison Essar, Asim Ghosh Hutch is the first service provider who launched MSN Messenger and Hotmail on mobile phones in India. The company has partnered with global service providers like Microsoft to provide various search engines for Hutch customers.

Reliance Communications launches video streamline service in India Reliance Communications is launching mobile video streaming service on November 9, 2006. The mobile video streaming service is similar to the webcast service, except that it will also view events on mobile phones. Reliance has invested INR 250-300 crore in the project. The mobile phone will support audio and video streaming capabilities to use this facility. Currently, there are approximately 27 million Reliance Communication’s subscribers, who are using mobile phones, which supports audio and video streaming functionalities. Firstly, it is expected that all audio and video streamline equipped mobile handsets would be launched in India.


The i4d News

Hotmail offers 1 GB storage capacity for their users Microsoft Corporation is expanding the storage capacity of MSN Hotmail’s active e-mail account up to 1 gigabyte. Microsoft has announced that the company is expanding the storage capacity of Hotmail’s active account up to 1 gigabyte and extending the expiration period for inactive account from 30 days to 60 days for those accounts that are more than two years old. The software giant is upgrading the storage capacity and extending the expiration period for email account due to company’s ongoing commitment for Hotmail users as they switch to Microsoft’s next generation email service, Windows Live Mail.The company is rolling out the storage upgrade from 7 November in Asia, which will affect Hotmail users of ten markets including Australia, China, India, Hong Kong, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Taiwan, Thailand and Singapore.

ment vendors by offering an open, extensible framework for easy integration.

Open Source

Sun releases Java for open source community Sun Microsystems, computer giant will offer programming language Java for the open source community. Java language is used in more than 3.8 billion mobile phones, computers and other digital devices around the world. According to Rich Green, Sun’s executive vice president of software, the company is hoping to provide more Java applications. The open source software is quite popular software in digital world. Majority of web servers, globally using Apache, an open source operating system and many businesses are using Linux for open source projects available free to use.

AlterPoint launches Open Source project ZipTie for Network Configuration Management AlterPoint, Inc., a leader in advanced network management solutions has released an open source project named ZipTie at the Gartner Enterprise Networking Summit. The main aim of the ZipTie is to create a community, which will advance network management beyond the limitations imposed by proprietary, vendor provided device management. The ZipTie is a open source software, which will expand the device coverage for networking engineer and operation teams. The ZipTie community can be accessed by The project will also help network equipment providers, network and system manage-


business. wire


Watch Asian games on mobile phones First time Qatar Telecom (Qtel) has displayed the handheld Digital Video Broadcast (DVBH) system. Digital Video Broadcast system will allow user to watch television programmes on mobile phones. DVBH would be demonstrated during the Asian Games, which will start here on 1 December, 2006 and specially showcase how the television pictures can be sent to mobile phones. According to this service plan, user can view 13 channels including Al Jazeera, CNBC, Rotana Music and the Cartoon Network, among others. According to Sheikh Fahad bin Jassim Al Thani, Qtel Executive Director of Wireless Services, the company is trying to get this service on Nokia mobile phones.

Use mobile phone as train tickets Now mobile phone user can use their mobile phones as train tickets also. France’s Bouygues Telecom, the company is testing a travel card, which is integrated into a mobile phone in trail covering the entire Paris mass transit authority (RATP) and Transilien SNCF suburban transit network in the Paris region. The company is trying to use mobile phone as train ticket also. Bouygues Telecom and the RATP are testing the contact less technology. Transilien SNCF has decided to join the second phase of the trail,

which will involve about 100 customers. The aim of this phase is to use mobile phone as travel cards in daily use in the transport network through the use of contactless technology. Paris has most extensive contactless infrastructure in Europe. Gemalto is providing the sim cards for this new service, while NEC is supporting for the mobile handsets and Inside Contactless for the Near Field Communication (NFC) contactless components.


Religious Institutions promotes for telecommunication First time leaders from different religions including Christians and Muslims, joined together for the first Inter-Faith based ICT International Conference in Accra to discuss the use of ICTamong faith based organisations. The Conference was organised by Ghana Telecom University and supported by Faith and Development Network (FIDE), NGO, which works for promoting the use of ICT in various countries. According to the Principle of Ghana Telecom University College, Osei K. Darkwa, these religious institutions can become telecentres for worldwide network of knowledge, information and developing community centres to serve economically, socially and educationally. The three main goal of the conference are to assemble religious institutions interested in technology literacy, skills training and community connectivity. All

BT plans to provide telecommunication services in India British Telecommunications Group (BT) has applied for the license to provide domestic and international phone services in India. The company announced that BT Telecom India Ltd has joined with India’s Jubilant Enpro Private Limited, in which company will hold 74 percent stake for $1.6 million. Company is expecting to get license in the next three months and would be able to provide services by mid of the year 2007. Company is expecting to generate $250m revenue from India and would employ an additional 6,000 people in the country by 2008. i4d | December 2006

O pportunities for

D igital A sia 6-8 February, 2007 Putrajaya International Convention Centre, Malaysia


Host Organisations

Ministry of Energy, Water and Communications (MEWC) Government of Malaysia

knowledge for change

Institutional Partners

Principal Sponsor

International Government Partners


Knowledge Partner

Media Partners ov

University of Malya


Supporting Partners


Asia's largest conference on ICT4D eASiA 2007 through its five seminal conferences, will focus on five emerging application domains of ICT for Development - eGovernment, ICT in Education, ICT and Rural Development, ICT enabled Health Services and Mobile Application and Services for Development

What? •

Meeting point to foster cooperation in ICT for Development in Asia

Platform for consultative dialoguing, strategic planning and business partnering

Comprehensive programme with keynotes from professionals, technical sessions and an exhibition

Participation of high level speakers and experts on ICT from Asia and beyond

Forum to address the issues of digital divide and explore opportunities for Digital Asia

Who? •

Ministry of Energy, Water and Communication, Government of Malaysia

Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission, Malaysia

Microsoft Corporation

Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC), Switzerland

The Commission in Information and Communications Technology, Philippines

The National Computer Center (NCC), Philippines

Ministry of Information and Communication, Government of Korea

The National University of Singapore (NUS), Singapore

Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM), Malaysia

International Development Research Centre (IDRC), Canada

... And many more

Why? •

Meet key decision makers, experts, leaders and stakeholders in ICT arena at one platform

Meet professional service providers, IT vendors, Telecom vendors, Satellite providers, Consulting firms, Government agencies and National-International development organisations in the domain of ICT

Opportunity for potential business partners from Asia and beyond to meet and exchange ideas and needs

Opportunities for cooperation in the field of ICT for development, education, governance and health among Asian countries

6 - 8 February, 2007 Putrajaya International Convention Centre, Malaysia

The Venue The Putrajaya International Convention Centre or better known as PICC among the Putrajaya residents, is located on top of Taman Puncak Selatan in Precinct 5. PICC takes its shape from the eye of the pending perak (a silver Malay royal belt buckle) with the main halls set in the eye of the pending perak. Putrajaya International Convention Centre Dataran Gemilang, Precinct 5 Federal Government Administrative Centre 62000 Putrajaya, Malaysia Tel: +6-03-8887 6000 Fax: +6-03-8887 6499 E-mail: Web:

Transportation and Accommodation Transportation By Road: Putrajaya is 25 kms from Kuala Lumpur and 15 minutes drive from KLIA and F1 circuit in Sepang. It is the most accessible city in Malaysia. You can reach Putrajaya using expressways, urban highways and rail. Prepaid Taxi: Delegates may take prepaid taxis from Airport to Putrajaya and/or from Kuala Lumpur to Putrajaya. Putrajaya International Convention Centre is approximately 30 min from KLIA and approximately 40 minutes from Kuala Lumpur city. Shuttle Service by organisers during the conference period: The organisers will provide a shuttle service for delegates from the Putrajaya Station to Conference Venue and Conference Hospitality Partner Hotels in Putrajaya (and back) on hourly basis. By Train: A high-speed train service either from Kuala Lumpur International Airport or KL Central (city), Kuala Lumpur, is the fastest way to reach Putrajaya.

Accommodation Organisers are pleased to announce Marriott Putrajaya as the Conference Partner Hotel for eASiA 2007. The hotel will offer the delegates room accommodation at a subsidised rate. Please visit the link for more details and to book your room.

eASiA's Unique Value Proposition •

High level speakers and experts from Asia and beyond

Right technology solutions and partners

Opportunity to forge strategic partnerships with sellers and buyers

Focussed session and target audience

Face-to-face meeting with key customers and prospects

Latest e-Solution services and initiatives from across Asia

6 - 8 February, 2007 Putrajaya International Convention Centre, Malaysia

Asia's largest conference on ICT4D

ASiA 2007

ASiA 2007

egov Asia 2007 will bring together some of the best minds from the highest echelons of government, industry, academia and civil society to discuss and deliberate on the key strategies for e-Government. The conference aims to create an invaluable Asian platform for consultative dialoguing, strategic planning, knowledge networking and business partnering in the field of e-Government. Highlights: • National e-Government strategies • International and regional perspectives • Policy reforms for ICT-enabled governments • Models of e-Service delivery • Emerging technology solutions

Digital Learning Asia 2007 will bring some of the key drivers from the leading countries of technology-enabled education to deliberate on the pressing challenges of technology-enabled education from capacity building to reengineering pedagogy; change management to providing digital access.

Asian Telecentre Forum 2007 aims to bring the Asian practitioners on a platform for learning and sharing the experiences. Experts will be engaged in close assessment of issues relating to project monitoring steered by external financial support, from international development agencies & governments in Asia.


Highlights • Telecentre movement in Asia: Road ahead • Partnerships for developing telecentre networks • Financing mechanism and sustainability factors of rural telecentres: A reality check • Service delivery and capacity building through telecentres

• National strategies on ICT in education • Localisation, customisation and content development • Educating the educators • Re-engineering pedagogy • e-Learning trend and practices • Education technology trends in Asia

Get Visibility through our Four Niche Magazines

ASiA 2007

Key Speakers

eHealth Asia 2007 aims to provide a platform to discuss the recent trends and emerging issues in the development of information & communications, science and technology and its integration in healthcare systems. Conference will provide a knowledge sharing platform for deliberating on the opportunities and possibilities of ICT use for better health care delivery.

mServe Asia aims to discuss and showcase the different aspects of mobile services, technologies, implementation and implications, developments on the public administration and tie them to the existing and future m-Government, education, agriculture and other applications. The conference will provide a platform to promote networking and business opportunity development.


Highlights • Enterprise mobile workforce management • Mobile infrastructure and connectivity issues • Next Generation 3G Network • mLearning • mServices • Emerging applications

• e-Health in developing countries • e-Health administration and management • Rural telemedicine • Emerging technologies in e-Health • Challenges and opportunities for collaborative action in e-Health

• Walter Fust, Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) • Richard Fuchs, International Development Research Centre (IDRC) • R. Chandrashekar, Additional Secretary, Ministry of Information, Communication and Technology, Government of India • Gerri Elliot, Corporate Vice President, Worldwide Public Sector, Microsoft

Host and Partner Organisations Host Organisation

Supporting Partners

Ministry of Energy, Water and Communications, Malaysia The Ministry is the key policy formulator and service regulator in Energy, Water and Communications sectors in Malaysia. The Ministry's main thrust is to facilitate and regulate the growth of industries in these sectors to ensure the availability of high quality, efficient and safe services at a reasonable price to consumers throughout the country.

The Asia Foundation is a non-profit, nongovernmental organization that supports programs in Asia that help improve governance and law, economic reform and development, women's empowerment, and international relations.

The Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission is the regulator for the converging communications and multimedia industry. The role of the MCMC Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission is to implement and promote the Government's national policy objectives for the communications and multimedia sector.

International Government Partners The Commission in Information and Communications Technology, Philippines, is the primary policy, planning, coordinating, implementing, regulating, and administrative entity of the executive branch of Government that promotes, develops, and regulates integrated and strategic ICT systems and reliable and cost-efficient communication facilities and services. The National Computer Center (NCC), Philippines, fundamental functions were to provide information bases for integrated planning and implementation of development programs and operational activities in the government.

Knowledge Partner INTAN is a premier government institution of Malaysia providing world-class training and capacity building programmes for public sector organisations of the country.

ASiA 2007

ASiA 2007

Bellanet promotes and facilitates effective collaboration within the international community, especially through the use of ICTs. The Commonwealth is an association of 53 independent states consulting and co-operating in the common interests of their peoples and in the promotion of international understanding and world peace. is both a social investment program that supports grassroots telecentre networks and a loose family of organizations with a common commitment to helping the telecentre movement thrive. In India USAID is investing in economic growth, health, disaster management, environment and equity in India and in programs that focus on areas where help is needed most and people-level impact is high. in Warisan Global is a knowledge strategy company of Malaysia that is in the business of designing, developing and executing projects in the area of bridging the digital divide and grassroots entrepreneurhsip.

Institutional Partners The National University of Singapore (NUS) is a multicampus university of global standing, with distinctive strengths in education and research and an entrepreneurial dimension.

MobileMonday Malaysia is an open community of mobile professionals fostering cooperation and cross-border business development through virtual and live networking events that share ideas, best practices and trends from global markets.

UiTM is Malaysia's premier institution of higher learning that has experienced a phenomenal growth since its inception in 1956.

Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) is Switzerland's international cooperation agency within the Swiss Foreign Ministry. Southeast Asian Ministers of Education Organization (SEAMEO) was established on 30 November 1965 as a chartered international organization whose purpose is to promote cooperation in education, science and culture in the Southeast Asian region. Sarvodaya is dedicated to making a positive difference to the lives of rural Sri Lankans.

University of Malya

Universiti Malaya is the first University of Malaysia, situated in the southwest of Kuala Lumpur - the capital city of Malaysia.

Conference Contacts Exhibition: Himanshu Kalra ( Papers: Prachi Shirur ( Registration: Mukesh Sharma ( General Information: Himanshu Kalra (

Asia's largest conference on ICT4D

Top Reasons to Exhibit at eASiA 2007 Targeted audience eASiA 2007 brings the right mix of quality delegates unparalleled at any other Asian forum. Unlike many other general IT fairs, it addresses the need to bring region's top public sector buyers at one place thus saving time and resources of focussed suppliers.

Valuable opportunity for face-to-face meetings eASiA 2007 maximises the face-to-face time exhibitors spend with key customers and prospects through informal meetings, structured appointments and many networking lunch and dinner receptions.

Listen to key decision-makers' needs eASiA 2007 gives you access to government IT decision-makers with the need, the authority and the budget to buy your products and services.

Focussed sessions for sponsors to position their solutions Sponsors could benefit from the key sessions, panel discussions and workshops by participating in the discussions and presenting their solutions to the quality audience from around Asia-Pacific and beyond.

Proven organisers eASiA 2007 is organised by Centre for Science, Development and Media Studies (CSDMS) and GIS Development, who have more than 10 years of experience in organizing niche events on ICT and GIS across continents along with several government partners.

Exhibitor's Response! "I wish to congratulate you all on pulling off not one but three conferences, all at the same platform. That was truly audacious in scope." Cisco

"I congratulate the CSDMS team for organising such a prestigious event. It was insightful for us at least." Canon India

"I was deeply honoured to participate in the conference. The quality of discourse, talent and depth of knowledge by the speakers, and the extraordinary opportunity for learning made Vision 2010 a great success for TechSoup." TechSoup

6 - 8 February, 2007 Putrajaya International Convention Centre, Malaysia

Exhibition Floor Plan 11















10 26 9

43 53













47 29





46 51






33 2



Entrance For any enquiry on exhibition contact: Himanshu Kalra ( Tel: +60166852201





= 12 sq metre

= 16 sq metre

= 77 sq metre

= 9 sq metre

= 20 sq metre = 24 sq metre = 49 sq metre

= 21 sq metre = 56 sq metre = 42 sq metre

= 48 sq metre

= 120 sq metre

6 - 8 February, 2007 Malaysia


First Name ................................................................................................................................................................................................... Last Name.................................................................................................................................................................................................... Designation/Profession ................................................................................................................................................................................. Organisation ................................................................................................................................................................................................ Address........................................................................................................................................................................................................ City................................................................................ .Postal Code ......................................................................................................... State .............................................................................. .Country ............................................................................................................... Tel.(O) ............................................................................ .(R)........................................................................................................................ Mobile ........................................................................... .Fax....................................................................................................................... Website....................................................................................................................................................................................................... E-Mail .........................................................................................................................................................................................................

Delegate type: Author




Supporting Partner




Sector: Govt.

My primary interest area is: egov Asia

Digital Learning Asia

Asian Telecentre Forum

I would like to receive weekly e-Newsletter on: egov Payment mode: Demand Draft

Digital Learning Cheque



i4d Wire Transfer

Payment Details: Cheque/Demand Draft No. ............................................... or Transaction ID .......................................... Dated .................. Drawn on ........................................... for amount RM/USD ................................... Payable in favour of 'CSDMS'.


Wire transfer detail: Beneficiary detail: CSDMS Bank name and address: Citibank Noida Branch, India, A-6 Sector - 4, Noida, UP, India, Account : 5-000890-288, Swift code: CITIINBXAXXX Detach & mail to eAsia Secretariat in Malaysia or India



Delegate Registration Fees Details Malaysia Delegates

Delegates from outside Malaysia

Govt./NGO/Academia Private

888 RM 1588 RM

Govt./NGO/Academia Private

300 USD 500 USD

Fees Entitlements The Delegate Registration entitles the individual to participate in all technical sessions, workshops, keynotes and plenary sessions and social functions for all five/any egov Asia 2007, Digital Learning Asia 2007, Asian Telecentre Forum 2007, eHealth Asia 2007 and mServe Asia 2007 conferences. It also includes: •

Delegate Kit

Tea/Coffee breaks on all three days of conference.

Lunch for all three days

Cancellations and Substitutions In case of any unforeseen or unprecedented occurrence beyond the hold of the conference secretariat, where the conference is called off, due to natural disasters, epidemics, man-made civil disturbances or other mishaps of large scale, there shall be no refund or reimbursement of any fees or commitments. Cancellation and Substitution Policy !

In case a registered participant is unable to attend, s/he may send his substitute to attend the conference. S/he must inform the Secretariat by 6th January 2007.


In case a registered participant is unable to attend and wants refund of registration fees, s/he may convey the same by 6th January 2007 and is liable to claim back 50% of the Registration Fee, subject to decision of the Secretariat. This does not hold for force majeure condition.



eASiA 2007 Secretariat (Malaysia) GIS Development Sdn. Bhd., Suit 22.6, Level 22, Menara Genesis, 33 Jalan Sultan Ismail, Kuala Lumpur 50250, Malaysia Tel: +60166852201 Tel: +60166910129

Fax +60321447636 (Malaysia) +91 120 2500060 (India)

eASiA 2007 Secretariat (India) Centre for Science, Development and Media Studies G - 4, Sector-39, NOIDA - 201 301, India, Tel: +91-120-2502180 to 85 Fax: +91-120-2500060 Web: E-mail:

For any information/enquiry contact: Tel: +60166852201 (Malaysia) Tel: +919312907675 (India) Web: Email:

Story telling for knowledge sharing

Rural access in Africa and Latin America Presenting a series of locally written articles with Southern perspectives on the impact and the use of ICTs for Development. The iConnect series is in its second year of collaboartion and we are pleased to share stories from Africa and Latin America on Rural Access written by Southern journalists.

In collaboration with: is a knowledge sharing platform for Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) in sustainable development. iConnect draws content from its partners, links resources and expertise and encourages collaboration. For the International Institute for Communication and Development (IICD), the host of iConnect, this is a way to share experiences, lessons learned and ideas, and interact with communities and people with an interest in development and the applications of ICTs. These experiences can lead to a better understanding of the actual benefits of ICTs for Development (ICT4D). A series of locally written articles on the impact and use of ICTs for development forms the core of iConnect. The articles have a strong focus on fact finding; objective information on ICT4D practices from a Southern perspective: Southern content written by Southern journalists. i4d is the iConnect partner for Asia, disseminating the articles to their readers. For the full text of the articles, please visit

Bringing access to the farmers in Burkina Faso By Ramata Soré In Burkina Faso, ‘privatisation’ of the telecommunications sector began with rural telephones in the 1960s. Even before that date, the Burkina Faso government offered rural villages the opportunity to establish telephone service by subsidising the cost of local line connections. The locally supported rural telephone programme came to an end because village communities were unable to pay the very high costs. The result was a drastic decline in the number of rural telephones. In 1998, a reform of the telecommunications sector led to introduction of a strategy for development of universal service in telecommunications. The 20012005 plan for development of national information and communication infrastructure is based on a progressive increase in the number of telephones in Burkina Faso. Financial difficulties of the government make the plan difficult to achieve, so the government requires telephone company operators to contribute 2 percent of their business revenue to create a fund that will be used to extend universal service. With the help of international partners, some organisations are taking the initiative in helping many villages to use new Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to gain access to information channels. Among the rural access initiatives in Burkina Faso are the Digital Connection Project, Support for Digital Integration (, the CSDPTT project to install telephones in remote areas ( and the IICD-sponsored ICT and Agriculture project (http:// To overcome a shortage of information about grain

December 2006 |

and food prices in the national markets, the Farmers’ Federation in Sissili province (FEPPASI) established three telecentres in March 2005 with the support of the International Institute for Communication and Development (IICD). Two rural access points were created in the towns of Boura and Bieha and a third at the central office of FEPPASI in Léo. Boura is a town of 26,347 residents, located 50 kilometres from Léo, the urban centre of the province. Léo is some 165 kilometres from the political capital, Ouagadougou. Joseph Dagano, President of the Société Coopérative de Production Céréalière (SOCOPROC) and of FEPPASI, says the creation of the telecentres responds to a critical need to overcome an Information and Communications deficit in the rural communities. “Some unscrupulous dealers in the big cities were taking advantage of the farmer’s lack of knowledge of prices for their produce and the cost of farm inputs,” he says. “Now that we have access to the Internet at Boura our farmers are no longer being misled.” Farmers are able to contact other farmers in different areas of Burkina Faso and can obtain accurate information about prices for grains and farm inputs. IICD also supports the printing of a FEPPASI bulletin. The Federation uses the bulletin, as well as PowerPoint audiovisual presentations to promote improved production techniques, the introduction of new seeds and the use of farm inputs. FEPPASI uses a portable computer and video-projector to bring the latest information to farm producers. In addition to the FEPPASI telecentres, two private operators in the urban centre of Léo have also been making use of new Information and Communications


The rural population of Sissili province trails behind new methods of communication such as the Internet, the telephone, and the use of computers. The country is now dealing with a social change in a culture based on oral traditions. In the words of Joseph Dagano, “Previously the small farmers accepted as truth the word of dealers who came to buy their produce. Having learned that some dealers gave them false information and cheated them on the price of food and grains, these farmers have decided to be connected to the Internet to obtain proper information.” In the traditional communications system the participants are face to face. With new ICTs the participants do not see each other physically, nor do they touch each other. Today, these two methods of communication rub shoulders with one another in the traditional rural society of Burkina Faso. Technologies but they have encountered major problems with maintaining regular connections.

For further information contact iConnect Coordinator Sylvestre Ouedraogo,

Expanding the frontiers of rural access in Ghana By Janet Kwami Janet Kwami writes on findings from an ethnographic research on communication, poverty and development in two villages in Twifo Praso district in Ghana. It looked particularly at the kinds of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) that are used in these villages and how they affect individuals living in these communities and their livelihoods. The focus of the investigation

Similarly the infrastructure was poor but improving: the villages did not have electricity though it was imminent; roads had improved in recent years; schools were in a parlous state in terms of infrastructure, materials and personnel; health provision was minimal. Rural depopulation through migration of youth to the cities was striking. Communication flows are dominated by face-to-face communication, bound up with constant movement of people and vehicles along the roads. Indeed, the most important ICTs in the region were human bodies moved by cars and trotros. Not only was there an enormous amount of mobility, but there was considerable expertise in coordinating movements and information by passing along information from person to person, or by using telephones in Twifo Praso to coordinate trade or family connections. And this was not limited to private communications; health information, educational materials, NGO activity and so on are all central to the mobility of people along the roads from the villages to the district capital Twifo Praso. In addition, there were other ICTs, often linked to physical mobility: By far the most important is radio, which is universally listened to and depended upon for news, information and

was based on the ICT Centre in the district and the opportunities it presents to the communities in that district. The research was part of the findings from a four-country study on ICT and Poverty carried out in Ghana, South Africa, Jamaica and India and is funded by the UK Department for International Development (DFID). The two villages that were studied were at varying distances from the district capital, Twifo Praso, 70kms north of the capital of Ghana’s Central Region — Cape Coast. The economy of the area was predominantly agricultural, comprising smallholdings of cocoa or oil palm land, mixed with vegetable crops. Livelihood was at a subsistence level, with seasonal inflows of cash at harvest times, oscillating with periods of high debt and lack of cash; daily life is sustained through household vegetable production supplemented by weekly marketing of small surpluses.


i4d | December 2006

entertainment as well as for a sense of social connection to wider regional and national networks. Local language broadcasting is highly valued, and could be built upon. There is the need to look much more closely at the concept of ‘access’. Looking at other information networks and needs, different combinations of media can be suggested. For example, schools in Twifo Praso as in most rural areas severely lack teaching materials while the Internet offers a seemingly inexhaustible library. How can we connect the two? One model would be to increase the access of teachers and students to computer centres so that they can directly access this information themselves. An alternative model involves integrating computers and Internet within the existing communicative ecology of the area through the use of intermediaries – teachers, health workers and extension officers. For example, teachers can send requests for information and teaching materials to a computer centre by word of mouth or by travelling along the roads (one could also imagine the use of citizen’s band radio or eventually mobile phone). People at the computer centre can do online searches to find the right materials and then process it into an appropriate form that can then be sent to the village school by road (an audio cassette, a poster, a 2-page summary). The idea of educational radio programmes developed from relevant materials online which is reformatted to meet rural informational needs is also a possibility. Access and use do not necessarily mean having one’s hands directly on a keyboard, or even having the skills to do so. In the

urban research site for example, I found some people who regularly send and receive email even though they have never personally seen a computer and would not know how to operate one directly; they may not even be able to read the email themselves. However, they can give messages to relatives or friends who do have these skills, and who can send and receive eMail on their behalf. As long as these channels of communication work, such people can be

regular and sophisticated users of e-Mail without even touching a computer. Overcoming the sense of exclusion through ICTs also extends to more directly practical information. On the one hand, while working with village households we have come across enormous confusion and disparity over even very basic information that is crucial to everyday life, such as levels and payment dates of school fees, national news directly affecting agricultural prices and procedures over cocoa and palm oil, as well as health information and programmes. This intensifies both practical and symbolic disadvantage, as well as a feeling that information is not the right of village people. What is needed, again, are extensive and effective channels of communication that combine ICTs and social networks to routinely keep people informed, as well as to convey people’s voices, problems and information needs ‘upwards’. It is significant that in the absence of local provision of such things as education and health information, local solutions are found to fill the gap. The point that this discussion hopes to present is that a range of ICTs has to connect to a wide range of diverse needs. These connections may overlap but each has to be thought through individually, creatively and appropriately, and each may lead outwards from ICTs to other technologies, institutions and arrangements. There is the need to recognise that ICTs may play little or no part in many rural issues, or there may be far better solutions even to local information needs. This is a long way from taking the attitude that computers or the Internet on their own directly bring benefits, or herald an imminent ‘information society’. It is rather a matter of thinking up very specific and appropriate connections between information needs and information means. For further information contact iConnect Coordinator John Yarney,

Access to ICT in rural communities in Mali: Telecentre initiatives, CMC and LICC open rural regions to ICT By Almahady Moustapha Cissé Located in some communities, telecentres, local information and communication centres (LICC) and community multimedia centers (CMC) allow underserved communities to access new technologies December 2006 |

in order to improve their life by providing them with information on the main development areas: health, education, agriculture… Considered to be lagging behind the Malian capital - Bamako -


the rural regions are increasingly targeted for the extension of ICT in Mali. In recent years, organisations like USAID, UNESCO and IICD have implemented different strategies in this field in answer to a political will. UNESCO, thanks to the support of the Swiss cooperation, launched a project of 50 Community Multimedia Centres in Mali, of which 22 are already operational. The CMC link both community radio and NITC. The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has funded, from 2003 up to now, 13 LICCs. The International Institute for Communication and Development (IICD) has funded three pilot structures in Fana, Koulikoro and Kita. The emergence of ICT in rural regions is perceived by many as a trigger, an opening on the outside world. This digital revolution is illustrated by many examples. Because of ICT, farmers, marabous and tourist guides are improving their production and management techniques. To ensure the sustainability of that experience, there has to be a synergy between the actors. Since 2004, the partners have understood that dynamic by creating a cooperation framework. The state, to

meet the partners’ expectations, has created a national ICT resources centre to manage the post-project phase. The promoters themselves have created an association. For further information contact iConnect Coordinator Filifing Diakite, filifing@journalist.cominformation

ICT education project amid rural connectivity challenges in Tanzania By Aloyce Menda Tanzania is a rural country with 80 percent of population and 70 percent of able labour force living permanently outside urban areas as peasant farmers. Like most developing countries, the Tanzanian rural masses lack satisfactory social services. For rural connectivity to make a difference in the community, it must be hinged on a social sector that touches on the lives and provides content that is relevant, cost effective and essential to the livelihood of the community. Education is one of the essential social services in rural Tanzania, which is deprived of quality infrastructure, human and financial resources. For instance, many rural schools lack tap water, electricity and basic telephone connections. This impedes the teacher and student’s passion to utilise modern technologies necessary in teaching or for


practical lessons. The modern Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) are among the essential tools that most school administrations hesitate to acquire due to lack of electricity and telephone or high costs of connection. From May 26 to 27, 2006, a two-day workshop titled ‘Rural Access Points and Connectivity’ hosted by the Sharing With Other People Network (SWOPNet) and supported by the International Institute for Communication and Development (IICD), was held in Dar es Salaam to deliberate on successes and challenges of rural connectivity in Tanzania. The workshop unveiled that practical implementation of the ICT education project is more complex than it was earlier anticipated due to rural connectivity challenges. About half of the 2000 government-registered secondary schools in Tanzania are in rural areas with feeble communication infrastructure. When officiating the official opening of the workshop, the Tanzanian Government Minister for Infrastructure Development, Hon. Basil Mramba said there is a need for a paradigm shift in the provision of ICT services and especially so, connectivity in rural areas. The minister stressed that those focusing on rural areas need to develop connectivity models that are people centered and relevant to those communities. He assured the gathering that the Government was keen and committed to the establishment of rural telecentres as one of the ways and part of the Government effort to help the rural poor and other underserved segments of the population to have access to ICT. By so doing the government aimed at empowering them to meaningfully participate in the current era of globalisation and knowledge-based economy. Freddy Bohorquez, a connectivity expert from La Paz – Bolivia told the workshop that high costs of rural connectivity is a i4d | December 2006

synonymous challenge in the developing world. He said the best option to reduce cost burden is for users to share connection technologies whenever possible. He presented a model of sharing connectivity from a remote rural community centre in Bolivia where four partner projects share connection technologies worth US$ 11,100. Each partner contributed US$ 2,775 to the total investment cost and a monthly fee of US$ 125 to their service provider. The Bolivian lessons on sharing rural connectivity and the practical experiences of tele-centres by Edephonce Nfuka, the Deputy Managing Director at the University Computing Centre, can form the knowledge base for the managers of the ICT education project. Selected schools for the ICT education project should form a network to share the bandwidth costs in order to lower connectivity costs and hence enhance project sustainability and prosperity. Most stakeholders in the education sector believe the ICT education project will have positive impact as far as quality of education is concerned. What is worrying some, particularly for the

teachers involved and student parents, is the source of income to sustain the project infrastructure after donor departure. They refer to a number of previous education projects which have expired shortly after termination of donor support. Lessons learnt from rural tele-centres could assist the managers of the ICT education project to design strategy for solving the problem of high costs in connectivity. To address this, appropriate resource sharing models based on existing and projected demand is worth trying. And with the expected national fibre optic backbone and marine fibre landing at the Dar es Salaam coast, the international bandwidth prices are expected to fall. But connectivity in itself will not make meaningful change to the community; this must be accompanied with timely and relevant content and as the saying goes…connectivity is King and content is Queen! For further information contact iConnect Coordinator Harry Hare,

Women making rural access possible in Uganda By Davis J. Weddi Northern Uganda has been at the centre of a two-decade long insurgency that has left the rural communities in a precarious pandemonium-like situation characterised by widespread poverty, high illiteracy levels and bad living conditions. But this insurgence just came at a time when the region was supposed to be eliminating these obstacles to achieving a dignified, civilised way of life. However, in the last 8 yrs, Apac district, where the Enhancing Access to Rural agricultural information using ICTs project is located, has been relatively safe. That is why WOUGNET (Women of Uganda Network) have been able to establish the project there, according to the WOUGNET Director Dr. Dorothy Okello. A research study undertaken in 2003, revealed that lack of information was the most limiting factor to increased productivity in Apac District. The rural farmers lacked information on how to improve quality of their products, improved seeds and crop varieties, sources of inputs/implements, plant diseases, pests and their control, soil management and conservation, and improved skills. The economy of the district mainly depends on subsistence production, where 75 percent of the population in the district are engaged in subsistence farming. Commercial farming accounts for only about 3 percent of farming activities. This implies that farming is the main activity in Apac district, and the majority of farmers are women.

with rural women farmers groups established in each parish. The main activities include: building capacity of rural women to access and use ICTs through training programmes and active use of the ICTs, like radio and mobile phones and basic use of the computer; strengthen member organisations to use and apply ICTs; generation of agricultural local content, information collection, repackaging, and dissemination; documentation of the project activities through audio, visual and print materials; establishment and strengthening of an Information Centre. Ms Janet Achora, the Project’s programme officer, says that access to information, knowledge and skills are key to improving the lives of rural populations. Though WOUGNET has made efforts to reach out to grassroots women farmers, there are still constraints that women face in accessing agricultural information. One of the constraints was found to be the literacy levels of the beneficiaries in the project area, which are extremely low with only 16 percent having attained a basic level of education and above. Another constraint is lack of access to agricultural information, which is a key limiting factor to increased productivity in Apac district.

WOUGNET Under WOUGNET’s Rural Access Programme, the project on “Enhancing access to Agricultural Information using Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs)” was initiated and supported by the Technical Centre for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation ACP-EU/(CTA) in 2005. A rural multi-purpose telecentre, called Kubere Information Centre, was established to improve access to agricultural information in Apac district. It is located in Apac town with proximity to the district offices and other nongovernmental organisations. Apart from serving the district agricultural office and its partners, this centre also serves twelve parishes in the four sub counties of Apac, Akalo, Bala and Akororo, December 2006 |


programmes, face-to-face meetings with the women farmers, WorldSpace satellite radio programmes ( WSprogram.html), and the Internet.

Kubere Information Centre

Application of ICTs to solve the problems The project has employed various strategies using both traditional and modern ICTs to disseminate agricultural information to the target group. The project employs a collaborative initiative of different development partners contributing to project implementation, hence minimising resources. An element of feedback is built-in, for example, questions raised by the women farmers are forwarded to agricultural officials in government and development institutions and their responses relayed back to the farmers. The project uses a mixed approach to access and to deliver information including weekly radio

The Kubere information centre acts as the coordination point of the rural access project in Apac district. It is equipped with three staff who prepare radio programmes in the local language, conduct community meetings, gather information and translate it from other agricultural partners in the district. They also train some of the women farmers on how to access information from the computers after it has been downloaded from the World Space Satellite receiver. This information is also used to enrich the local radio programmes scripts. Kubere also acts as a dissemination point. It is located within a market place and has a big notice board used for pinning up vital information. “People come here to clarify information they may have heard us airing on radio. They also come here to read newspapers and to view latest information like admission results for public universities,” says Janet Achora. “We also have several publications that contain agricultural oriented information including market prices and post-harvest handling information. Other people come here looking for information on jobs. Women come to the centre wanting news updates on the project while some women are training on basic computer knowledge,” Achora adds. “Women feel socially empowered, because they now have this information. They contested in elections and feel they can do something, they can cause change, not only in their homes but in the communities.” For further information contact iConnect Coordinator Davis Joseph Weddi,

Challenges of rural connectivity in Zambia By Wyson Sinkondyobwe Rural connectivity, a key benefit to many Internet users, is spreading at a fast rate especially in developed countries but its potential is yet to be tapped in developing countries such as Zambia. As many people who have been to rural areas of Zambia would tell you that it is too remote, poverty levels are too high, people have no tap water, and roads are bad and impassable during the rain season. Most people are subsistence farmers and earn a meagre income which is only enough for their basic needs. It is really a matter of survival that matters to them more than spending their scarce time on knowing what rural connectivity can bring to improve their immediate needs. Rural connectivity is a rare service in most rural parts of Zambia; the situation is worsened by lack of infrastructure, electricity supply, the high cost of Internet charges, illiteracy, and lack of awareness. Despite the gloomy picture of rural connectivity, Macha, a rural place in Southern Province of Zambia is set to improve the provision of Internet service to the community. The project which started in 2004 is run by the Macha Mission Hospital and the Malaria Institute at Macha (MIAM) has added a new life to many people around the area. It began with the involvement of the Bishops of the church, chief Macha, the community members, and the government officials. The project coordinator Gertjan Stam says local people where trained and


empowered in Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs), a process that took one year to be completed. Connectivity in Macha is now operational as the project has two VSAT connections, diverse routing, LAN and distributed WLAN with 75 users. The project has 100 computers and is growing rapidly, two network servers, firewall, file sharing, network printing and system management. Stam says the training of local people to build, to operate and to maintain local system has made it possible to maintain the operation of the project. “Rural connectivity in Macha has added value to ICT in Zambia, the key is do it with local people,” Stam noted. As a rural setting there are bad roads, but the project is also faced with the challenge of limited funding (equivalent less than one Toyota) and there are few people with ICT knowledge and expertise. Mr. Stam, who is the key implementer of the project, says that there are many benefits that Macha people have acquired from the project such as quality medical research, experts are attracted to this rural area, and schools build international relationships and participation. Macha is one of the few rural areas currently enjoying the Internet connectivity, as for most areas in the country, the gap is still big to be bridged. To connect to the Internet organisations with money depend on digital wireless local loop, which is beyond the means of local i4d | December 2006

people who have to decide between having Internet and putting food on their table. Despite the difficulties involved, rural connectivity potential in the country looks bright as the country’s state owned Internet Service Provider (ISP) Zambia Telecommunication (ZAMTEL) is in the process of laying out an optic fibre network to replace the copper wire network. ZAMTEL Public Relations Manager Mr. Charles Kachikoti told iConnect that the major optic fibre cable that is being laid under the Indian Ocean from Sudan to Cape Town in South Africa involves more than 30 African countries. The Macha project in Southern Province of Zambia is an interesting issue that should encourage the policy makers, civil society, and other stakeholders that even in rural areas despite its many challenges, hope can be restored to people once they are hooked to the Internet. For further information contact iConnect Coordinator Tovin Ngombe,

‘Indigenous broad band’ for an equitable commerce By Christian B. Espinosa This is the first iConnect article received from Ecuador. This elaborated article will provide very interesting information on the community of Guamote which is a model of rural connectivity in Ecuador. The initiative forms part of the Network that involves more than 200 families in the community. The access is made possible by means of a combination of wireless technologies and ADSL and it is used to gather information about agricultural prices by means of the Internet to be broadcasted later by a community radio. “We had just finished learning how to log on to a computer when we were already part of a complete commercial network on the Internet.” With this sentence, Ms. Sonia Altamirano, representative of the Guamote Foundation Ayllacunapac Causaimanta Tandari (ACT) explains the impact of an initiative that joins together more than two thousand different kinds of goods, among agricultural products and handicrafts by means of its web site Camari is an original marketing system, based on solidarity and supported by the access to the new Information Technologies. This system concerns 13 associations of civil society and 6.500 families belonging to different ethnical and cultural groups, located in various regions of the country, such as the Andes region, the coastal area and some rural districts near the Amazon River. And the most amazing thing about this project is that the network was created six years ago, when many big companies in the country couldn’t even dream to be able to start exchanging information at this level. According to the officers in charge of its development, the system has been useful to mitigate the effects produced by the lack of communication channels, an obstacle that has traditionally hindered the marketing of the goods produced by indigenous communities. The case of the Guamote canton, in the province of Chimborazo, an indigenous village located at five hours drive from Quito, is an example of what we have just pointed out. “It is amazing to see how the access to relevant information through the Internet has contributed to redress an unfair situation of exclusion for the December 2006 |

indigenous people in the area”. These words belong to José Venegas, the Director of the community radio ‘The voice of Guamote’. Mr. Venegas refers to real time information, not only the broadcasting of local news but also the monitoring of national and international web sites and digital media. He also refers to the monitoring of the links they have established with ALER (Latin American Association of Radio Education). But the mission accomplished by the fusion between the radio and the access to new Technologies in rural settings does not end there. The radio station provides updated information to more than 200 families and a list with the prices of agricultural products in the national markets. This list, downloaded from Internet, is broadcasted every Wednesday during a radio programme called ‘Back to the Land’. ‘Back to the Land’ is produced by a group of research workers in charge of finding out, for example, the difference in the price of a


quintal of potatoes in Guamote versus the final price of the same product in the markets of the principal cities like Quito or Guayaquil. Ms. Sonia Altamirano, a member of the ACT foundation explains that “The purpose of the research is to prevent the middlemen from imposing their prices to the indigenous agricultural producers in the Guamote trade fair, every Thursday”. Sonia is one of the members of the research team in charge of gathering the information about prices at a local level. These prices are then compared with other prices coming from the rest of the country through the Internet and the final information is then broadcasted by a radio programme in their local radio station, “The voice of Guamote”, the day before the trade fair. “Formerly, a quintal of potatoes was sold for one dollar but afterwards, middlemen sold the same quintal for twelve dollars in the national markets.”, Ms. Altamirano recalls. At present, every Wednesday afternoon, agricultural producers in the villages are already aware of the final prices of their products in the national markets.

Establishing bonds by means of ADSL and wireless technologies According to the director of the radio station, José Venegas, the connection was possible thanks to the self management combined with the support offered by young Dutch experts that succeeded in taking the broad band to Guamote from a village located at an hour drive from the place, called Alausí. “Andinanet, the public Internet Service Provider, considered that we were not a priority for their connectivity Project. Therefore, we had to look for other mechanisms”, Mr. Venegas adds. Giovanni Castañeda, systems manager in Camari, explains that for the development of the Project they purchased a broad band account (ADSL) in Alausí and they had two amplifying towers installed along the road (50 kilometres). This enabled the wireless signal to reach the area of Guamote where the access is then redistributed by means of six radio antennas. “The project demanded an investment of approximately 35,000 dollars and was financed by donor companies from Holland”. For the moment, there is a Learning Centre called Intsisa that has 20 computers with Internet connection, an information center, located

in the main church of the village, one in the ACT foundation and another one in the radio station. “We pay ten dollars a month and we collect the money among all of us”, Mr. Venegas says, adding that in Ecuador a broad band account (128 mega) has an average cost of 40 dollars (one of the most expensive prices in the region). Thanks to the project, he says, they spend only 10 dollars a month and they have a broad band account with a speed of 512 mega. However, one of the biggest hindrances they have to cope with is the constant interruption of the connection, caused by defects originated in Alausí. The broad band account used in that location is set in a telephone “lent” by the parish priest. This telephone is also used by other media and therefore, more often than not the line is saturated. Moreover, having these damages fixed brings about a lot of bureaucracy, as the technical support of the ISP Andianet is located in another city, Ambato, even more distant from Guamote than Alausi.

“We are compiling information from Peru” In the middle of such a scenario as we have just described, their most immediate expectation is to be able to search the Internet, in order to access medical centers and enlarge the research on indigenous medicine. Meanwhile, they have already succeeded in sharing information and research papers dealing with agro ecology, coming from other countries. About this issue, this is what Leandro Delgado, one of the natives, member of the project in the area, has to say. “We are compiling a lot of information coming from Peru. As far as the production of potatoes is concerned, the Peruvian producers are very advanced. We can learn a lot from them, we can find out new ways to fight against plagues like the white worm, for instance.”, and he adds. “The documents are summarized and turned into small booklets that are handed over to the assistants during the meetings that we organise for the dissemination of these issues.” Camari network has coordinated a process of training for indigenous people in the community that took almost two years. Nevertheless, they believe that a more extended follow up will be necessary if they want to make a real exploitation of the possibilities offered by a broad band connection. “We intend to download not only texts but also videos and we want to be able to burn our own CDs. In short, we want to take advantage of any mechanism of motivation that is available in the web”. Ms. Sonia Altamirano finally declares.

More about Camari Network In Quichua language, Camari means “gift” or “kindness”. This organisation was born in 1981 as a complement of the actions carried out by the organisation Fondo Ecuatoriano Populorum Progressio (FEPP). The mission of this organisation is to support the marketing of agricultural products and craft industries, produced by small companies and small agricultural organisations. On the other hand, FEPP is a private institution, created with a social purpose, backed by the Bishop’s Conference of Ecuador since 1970. It was created to support the development of the popular sectors in the country. The philosophical frame of this community project is the belief in sustainable development, based on values such as social equity, the protection of the environment, fair commerce and economic security. This is the reason why each order made via the Internet is shared among all the families of the agricultural producers.


i4d | December 2006

The development of the network Camari was supported by the Multilateral Fund for Investments (FOMIN), a part of the Group of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB). The investment was of approximately half a million dollars and its main purpose was to promote the participatory economic development in Latin America and the Caribbean. Giovanni Castañeda, coordinator of the system, assures that at present the 10% of the global sales is achieved through e-commerce. “Our web site receives more than 170.000 visits every year”, he says. This experience, as he insists, was so enthusiastically accepted that the IDB has even invited Ecuador to submit this case in Washington during the forum “Building Opportunities for the majority” in 2006. “They were just fascinated by our project; we have even received an invitation from the IDB to start a new stage of the project by means of the use of the new technologies”. The network includes the Cuenca Embroidering Center, in the province of Azuay, Ecopapel from Bahía de Caráquez in Manabí, Tejemujeres in Gualaceo-Azuay, Tesoros del Inca in Chordeleg-Azuay, the Embroidering Center in Cuenca-Azuay, the Association Río Intag in Intag-Imbabura, Valle de los Manduriacos in CotacachiImbabura, Reccosure in Loja, Sara Huram in Ibarra and Chankuap in Macas. In all, 13 associations that have 742 different articles displayed in their respective mini sites. These articles go from seeds or marmalades to clothing, accessories, embroidering and wooden carved articles for decoration. These articles arrive mainly to organisations in the United States of America and in some countries of the European Community. The web site of the project has even managed to establish agreements with other very well known international web sites such as E-Bay or Paypal for the dissemination of the information and payment conditions.

Area covered by the project The network has arrived at some places, where the remote can only be accessed by plane, like in the area of south Macas, in the province of Morona or Santiago in the Amazonian Rainforest of Ecuador. Here, more than 500 families (73%) of the Achuar ethnic group sell their handicrafts on-line through the Chanukah Foundation.

The importance of training and skills improvement Yolanda Suárez, a 36 years old woman, agent of the Mazapán Handicraft Association, located in the parish church of Calderon, in the northern area of the capital city, tells that immediately after she started learning about text processors, spreadsheets or searching the Internet, Camari provided her the connectivity, the computer and the training she needed. The next step was to teach her how to edit a web page and how to use a digital camera to put her photographs on the web on her own, with no need to ask for anybody’s help. “We learnt what we had to do to remove the glow from the images, how to resize them or to enlarge a portion of an image and how to copy the images to the web site”. With the same level of quality, the whole network was trained in promotion techniques, digital marketing and e-commerce. “At the beginning, we only received very small commands”, Ms. Suárez recalls, but, little by little, they began to realize that the key element was to do business from company to company (B2B). In that way, she adds, they managed to get commands over 20.000, 25.000 and 30.000 items “without even having met our clients or listened to December 2006 |

their voice”. In all, two years of training and studying from the booklets, that showed them what to do, step by step. They know that the profits may be affected by the fluctuations corresponding to the high or low sales season, but in average, we can say that each participant can earn from 150 to 200 dollars a month.

The advantages • The organisations have appropriated the new technological tools (equipment and software) and they handle them by themselves. • The promotion and dissemination of this cooperative marketing system, called Sistema Solidario de Comercialización Camari, has awakened the interest inside and outside the country. The promotion was carried out during the fairs and by means of travels, triptychs, posters, interviews, publicities and links with many web pages from different countries. • The groups of agricultural producers have now an extended capacity of supplying and marketing their products, not only with Camari but also with other clients inside and outside the country.

The system Camari has adopted the system CatGen, developed by PEOPLink, a non-profit organisation from the United States of America, an e-Commerce solution mainly oriented to serve small producers and artisans. At the local level, the technical support was done by Metamorf, an Ecuadorian company that has participated in the development of CatGen. The technical support was done mainly through cycles of visits to each one of the groups and also by means of the telephone and the e-Mails. The main areas of support were: computer science, the handling of CatGen system, updating and improvement of electronic catalogs, development of new products, handicraft and graphic designs, marketing, administration and social organisation.

Public incidence The e-commerce network Camari from Ecuador is one of the most important models in the sector and is part of the new connectivity agenda known as Information Society Strategy. In fact, Camari is a member of the group that carries out the advancement proposals for e-commerce. More than that, this is the first experience in application in South America since the year 2000. There are similar cases only in Central America, India and Nepal.  For further information contact iConnect Coordinator Diana Andrade,


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Bytes for All... Debate of the Month Micro-credit: Keys to kingdom? Micro-credit…not a sure shot solution and hardly free of controversy, wrote Frederick Noronha, irking many readers into a second, healthy round of criticism from BFA listers. Does microcredit really empower poor people or is it benefiting a segment alone? Is the process of acquiring loans not in favor of women? Are the interest rates on loans too high? Were the listers entirely offtopic? Reactions to questions drew passionate responses bordering on personal idealism to factual deliberation—in the end, getting the best from the group. See the thread to learn how just two words are drawing debate on the future of development.

Foss@Work in Manila FOSS@Work, the first international workshop for small to medium enterprises (SMEs), drew over 50 participants to Manila, Philippines. From 12-15 November, delegates including IT managers from Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia, Fiji and India were trained on how to reduce costs and maximise benefits through Free and Open Source Software. InWEnt Capacity Building International, Germany, UNDP-Asia Pacific Development Information Programmeme (UNDP-APDIP) and the University of the Philippines Manila jointly organised the event through the assistance of the UNDP International Open Source Network ASEAN+3 node. Source:


Events and announcements Strengthen Bangladesh: Annual Harvard contest This global contest is open to any individual in the world. Any compelling essay that establishes a way to improve the lives of low and middle-income people in Bangladesh is acceptable for submission. Winning essay is awarded the Anwarul Quadir Prize worth US$25,000. Deadline for submission is December 31, 2006. Questions and requests for more information should be emailed to: Source:

Photos for All: Unseen images A group devoted (mainly) to images from the Third World. Images which cast a positive image, not images of desperation! Please check, join and contribute your images to building a sharable pool.

Governing the net “If the appropriate agencies of Bangladesh government are not serious in the follow up process with UN, the ultimate diffident in achieving outputs will suffer a setback for the public sector services,” said BFA lister Reza Salim, highlighting a lack of interest among developing nations towards Internet Governance. At a seminar on October 14 in Dhaka, Bangladesh NGOs Network for Radio and Communication and Computer Jagat, an ICT magazine, invited prominent speakers to raise the flag against a single country governing a global medium. “All the countries need to participate in the process of governing the Internet...poor countries should work together to protect their interest,” said seminar organisers. So, what eventually happened at Athens during the Internet Governance Forum? Follow our threads.,



ITID goes open access Information Technologies and International Development, an ICT publication, is now offering free access to all of its high-quality research online. Published quarterly through The MIT Press, ITID is a peer-reviewed journal for researchers and practitioners from the engineering and social sciences; technologists; policy makers; and development specialists. With Microsoft’s support, ITID is one of the first journals from MIT Press to go the open access way. Source:

23m stand up against poverty From India and China all the way to South Africa and USA, nearly 23 million people pledged solidarity against poverty in what is now a Guinness world record for a global movement. “It helps put life in perspective when we participate in solving one of our generation’s biggest challenges,” said BFA lister Naimur Rehman who showed enthusiasm for the campaign organised by the Global Call to Action Against Poverty (GCAP). Participants were unanimous in calling upon governments to meet the UN Millennium Development Goal to end poverty by 2015. Source:

The African Tech Summit ‘Technology as a Catalyst for Economic Development in Africa’ is the theme for The African Technology Summit 2006 Conference and Exhibition to be held in Cotonou, Benin from13-15 December 2006. For more information e-mail: and

Community radio for India a reality The Community Radio Forum of India has hailed the Group of Ministers recommendation to open the arena at last. The new policy now allows civil society organisations, NGOs and other non-profits to apply for Community Radio licenses making citizens radio a reality.




i4d | November 2006

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Bytes for All... Pakistan ICT indicators WSA Pakistan has released basic ICT indicators for Pakistan. Source:

Global ICT policies and case studies Institute of Communication and Development is offering a survey of national 25 ICT policies and 24 case studies from around the world. The case studies attempt to demonstrate development impact and lessons learned on the practical implementation of ICT for development, with a special focus on agriculture, education, and health. Courtesy: Miraj Khaled, Source:,

Debate: A radio or a laptop? A vibrant debate continues on the access, ease of operation, and significance of a radio versus a laptop–especially in terms of language varieties. Source:

Mesh networking is hot The AirJaldi mesh network is located in and around Dharamshala. The network can be considered as one of the largest mesh networks in the world. It covers over a hundred kilometres of rough terrain with a number of mountains and hills. Source:

e-PCs in Sri Lanka The e-Sri Lanka PC Programmeme is aimed at increasing Sri Lanka’s current low IT literacy. Jointly initiated by ICTA and Intel, three PC models are available through this scheme at selected local distributors. All models come with a three-year product warranty and pre-loaded self-learning educational software that explains common features of a computer in all national languages. Users can obtain telephone based remote support for a period of one year. Source:

Open Source Nepal joins open courseware fray Creators of have a simple vision: ‘Our dream is to create a resource repository in the next five years so that, in future students in Nepal can study without buying a book.’ The website is ideal for resources for researcher, educators and students. All Fossians are invited to join Sixyadaan. Educators, writers or researchers can post original articles only with appropriate references. Source:

desktop computers using Ubuntu Linux in non-profit organisations as part of a community project. The project was awarded the first ‘Open Technology Gold Award for the VCS’ by the national FOSS. Results from the study have been posted online at: http:// BFA lister Edward Cherlin offers this advise to FOSS advocates: ‘Cost saving is important when switching to Linux, but the strongest argument is security. Get legal, financial, and ICT together when making this pitch, and ask them what their liability would be for a security breach that violated people’s privacy rights. Then show them the CERT statistics on numbers of security flaws found in Windows and Linux.’ Source:

e-book on bandwidth optimisation Network architects get an insight into low-cost solution through a new free e-Book titled ‘How To Accelerate Your Internet: A practical guide to Bandwidth Management and Optimisation using Open Source Software’. Released in October 2006, the book began as an online correspondence, which led to a face-to-face meeting of bandwidth experts in May 2006. Sponsored by the International Network for the Availability of Scientific Publications in association with the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics, Aidworld, and Hacker Friendly LLC. Available at: Source:

Urdu support in Ubuntu 6.10 The Ubuntu Pakistan Team led by Noumaan Yaqoob have given Urdu support in the latest Ubuntu Linux version 6.10, which is ready for distribution. Source:

Localisation software from Pakistan A list of new localisation software efforts including Pashto OSS, Urdu Fonts and an Urdu bulletin board. Source:

Software records human rights abuse Martus is a Free Software computer application created by Benetech for recording incidents of human rights abuses. It has a desktop component that resembles an eMail client, a network of redundant backup servers that store the data, and a public Internet search engine. Primarily aimed at NGOs. Source:

Bytes for All: Bytes For All Readers Discussion: bytesforall_readers Bytes for All Summary Archive:

Non-profits conduct Ubuntu Linux desktop tests East of England Free and Open Source Software recently tested 10 November 2006 |

Bytes for All discussion summary compiled by: Zunaira Durrani, Bytes for All, USA


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 Telecentre Talks L IFELINES I NDIA

Voices to bridge the knowledge gap Anuradha T.N. Project Manager One World South Asia India

Lifelines India seeks to provide information to grassroots communities via a phone and voicemail-based Q&A (question and answer) service available from both landline and mobile phones.

Phone based Q&A service Lifelines India ‘Soochna Se Samadhan Sewa’ (in Hindi Language) is an initiative to use the power of voice as the primary means of information dissemination. At the moment the service is specifically geared to agribusiness sector. More than 65 percent of India’s one billion population work in agriculture. Small and marginal farmers are not able to make the most of their opportunities because lack of the information on best practices, pest/disease management, uncertain weather conditions, market linkages, government schemes/policies, and access to credit and loan facilities from agricultural banking institutions. OneWorld South Asia (OWSA) with support from British Telecom and CISCO systems are piloting the service in North India in partnership with other civil society organisations. BT and CISCO Systems have supported the initiative as a part of their Corporate Social Responsibility programme to access the ICTs can im-prove people’s lives and open doors to educa-tion, jobs, entertainment and interactions.

Strategic Objectives The strategic objectives of the project are as follows: • To develop an ICT based solution for grassroots communities to access information and knowledge,


• To use the ICT based solution to bridge the information and knowledge gap of grassroots communities in various development issues, • Seeks to provide voice-based information to rural communities, specifically farmers to access a network of agricultural experts & databases of knowledge via a phone and voicemail-based Q&A service available in both landline and mobile phones.

How it works The farmer dials a designated number using a landline/mobile telephone. The call first reaches the Interactive Voice Response (IVR) System, where the farmer registers the query with the help of the voice menu. The query from the farmer is stored as a voice clip in the database server. The Knowledge Worker (KW) logs into the application through the web interface, and views all the calls that are waiting for their attention. The KW searches the FAQ database for answer. If the answer is in the database, a KW stores the answer for the query in the IVR. If the answer is not in the FAQ database, send it to subject matter experts. When the answer is received from the expert, the application alerts the KW. The answer in voice mode is played when the farmer calls for answer to his query. The farmer can also retrieve the answer in text format from the Information Centre near to his village. The farmers can also send pictures of crops or cattle for expert opinion through the web application.

Service flow of ‘Soochna Se Samadhan Sewa’ Through Lifelines, information on the concerned issues are just a call away. • Farmers can check for answers for their queries through the offline database available at the information centres. If the answer is available they listen to the answer or else can also take a print out.

• If answer for the query is not available, the farmer dials the Lifelines number and registers a query, and gets a query ID for his/her question. The answer to the query is made available within 24hrs. • The registered call is handled by a knowledge worker who searches for answer in the online FAQ database. If the answer is available, s/he tags it to the question and the query is answered. • If the answer is not available in the database the query is sent via email to expert for answers. • Experts can also call the lifelines number (different from the one for farmers) through their unique expert id and listen to the queries and also instantly answer the queries through phone. Experts are alerted through a SMS message. • Once the answer is received by the KW it is audio recorded and tagged to the question • The farmer dials in the lifelines number again and on input of his query ID is able to listen to the answer. • The answer gets saved in FAQ database in text and audio form.

Conclusion Though telephone lines have reached rural areas through the introduction of Public Call Offices (PCOs), the poor have indeed very limited access to ICTs. Only radios are owned by a majority of poor households. Televisions, telephones and newspapers are available to the majority of households on a shared basis. It is significant to note, that tools like the phone, radio, video and newsprint are still popular and accessible for the rural population. Phone is a simple and easily accessible tool in rural pockets of India. Lifeline aims to use the advantages of this tool clubbed with innovative technology for dissemination of information and knowledge among communities.  i4d | December 2006

December 2006

ICTD Project Newsletter

Women’s Voices on Air Potential of Community Radio ICTs have a much greater impact when they are brought into an existing empowerment process. This can be seen in the Mahiti Manthana project where ICTs are facilitating the information and communication processes of Mahila Samakhya sanghas and also giving marginalised women a voice to articulate issues which affect their lives.


here was an air of festivity in Chamanhalli Hundi village in HD Kote taluk of Mysore district. A bright colourful shamiana (cloth awning) had been erected and it was teeming with women, equally resplendent in attire and mood. Children jostled at the entrance while an occasional village bus stopped near the place to disgorge passengers. It was a pleasant winter evening on 29 Nov 2006. The mood was one of anticipation and pride. The inaugural radio programme, produced by women of this village, was to be broadcast at 6 p.m. When the announcer mentioned the name of the village a loud cheer went up from the audience. It was indeed a day for the village women to walk tall. They had come a long way from battling arrack producers who were wrecking havoc with their lives to being participants in a radio programme which would be heard by all women in the five taluks of Mysore district. Their voices were now on air. No mean feat. The whole process of how women readily took to ICTs was summed up succinctly by Parimala, District

Coordinator, MSK who said, “MSK was involved in the process of empowering women. Mahiti Manthana came in at an appropriate stage. Initially MSK was apprehensive about using technology. We thought it would be difficult for rural women to accept technology. On the contrary it was the other way round. Sanghas are coming forward to take this up and fight for their own space. More and more Sanghas are coming forward and we are unable to keep up with the demand. ICT is a great tool for the empowerment of women. When MSK comes to an end, Mahiti Manthana should continue the process.” The inauguration was attended by representatives of NISG, UNDP, IT for Change (ITfC), Mahila Samakhya Karnataka (MSK), Commonwealth of Learning and Karnataka State Open University (KSOU). The broadcast was on the Gyanvani channel (FM 105.2 MHz) of IGNOU through the KSOU. The half-hour programme titled “Kelu Sakhi” (in Kannada it means “lis-

ten friend”) will be broadcast every Monday at 9 pm, with a repeat broadcast on Tuesday at 9 am. The live broadcast will start from 25 Dec 2006. The format of the programme is as follows: 

Human Interest story

MSK update

Woman of the Week (featuring story, song, etc by one woman)

Advertisement by KSOU

Songs/play/information (about police, bank, law, etc)

The ideas and content for each programme are given by the women or by MSK while ITfC takes care of the technicalities of recording and editing the programme. Three women from Chamanhalli Hundi – Taiamma, Mahadevamma and Puttataiamma – have been trained in making radio programmes. Currently the radio programmes are structured and script based. Script based programmes face the literacy barrier since many women may not be able to read a written script in order to enact it. ITfC envisages that

Make ICTs Work for People

At the inaugural broadcast there will be a transition to unstructured, non-script based programmes featuring stories and plays produced by women themselves. This will enable participation by larger numbers of women. The radio programme is one of the three components of the Mahiti Manthana project. This project, being implemented by ITfC, is closely aligned with the objective of MSK which is “education for empowerment”. The three components of MM i.e. radio, video and tele-centres are situated within MSK’s strategy of women empowerment. Mahila Samakhya is an established initiative of the Government of India for empowering socially and economically disadvantaged women in rural areas. MSK works largely with illiterate women, building their capacities through trainings, workshops and other means that are chiefly information and communication processes.

manage their own community radio, a workshop was conducted by ITfC in December 2005. This workshop was held in partnership with Mahila Samakhya Karnataka and Commonwealth Educational Media Centre for Asia (CEMCA). The objective of the workshop was to introduce the women to the basics of producing a radio programme. The participants were given an exposure to basic production techniques and were also taken to different recording studios (AIR,

KSOU and private) to show them how editing is done and broadcast takes place. The participants were Sangha women who had demonstrated leadership roles in their Sanghas and also had some basic singing, storytelling and role playing skills. Some of them were panchayat representatives. The lessons of the workshop were that the elder women of the Sanghas, with their experience and association with the Sangha would make better programme managers while adolescent girls would make a better production team. This capacity building exercise will now prove useful since the government has granted permission to NGOs to set up community radio stations.

Move Towards Community Radio From this first inaugural broadcast to community radio is the next logical step. On 16 th November 2006 the Union Cabinet gave permission to non-government organisations and educational institutions for setting up community radio. There were already some examples of community radio in India before the long-delayed decision was announced.

Capacity Building of Women To prepare women to move towards the stage where they can


Attiguppe Telecentre in Hunsur Taluk, Karnataka

Namma Dhwani (Our Voice) of Budikote in Kolar district of Karnataka was started in 2001 by Voices, a media advocacy group based in Bangalore. They have been narrowcasting programmes made by rural men and women trained in the basics of radio production. The programmes reach the households, who have purchased subsidized radios equipped with cable jacks, though a cable network. Deccan Development Society working in Zaheerabad area of Medak district, AP. A couple of young dalit women produce the programmes and take the tapes to the villages for narrowcasting. More than 300 hours of programming have been put together.

The Community Radio Initiative in Uttaranchal started in 2001 by Himalaya Trust and supported by Panos. Using speakers and stereo equipment, programmes are narrowcast in the village community by five groups in Garhwal region and one group in Kumaon region.

The Kutch Mahila Vikas Sanghathan (KMVS) is working with women artisans in Bhuj, Gujarat, and since 1999 the media cell has produced a variety of programmes which

Guiding matriarch of the radio community are aired through AIR, Rajkot. 

Chalo ho Gaon Mein is a community radio programme in Palamu district of Jharkhand. This is being implemented by an NGO Alternative for India Development (AID) supported by National Foundation for India. The programmes are aired by AIR, Daltonganj.

Community radio is defined as radio that is owned by the community and airs programmes designed and produced by it specifically for its own developmental needs. Community radio is about the citizens’ right to disseminate knowledge and the citizens’ right to know. It is not just about making programmes and airing them. The ends of community radio are much broader, and involve issues such as initiating development from the grassroots and bringing in the voices of the excluded to the centre. Recognizing this, in 1995 the Supreme Court gave an important ruling that airwaves are public property to be utilized for promoting public good and ventilating a plurality of views, opinions

and ideas. It strongly criticized the government monopoly over broadcasting. Since then 11 years later after many fits and starts the muchawaited decision has been taken. But there are some worrying aspects lingering. First, this is a policy decision. The legislation by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting is awaited which will frame the detailed terms and conditions for NGOs to apply for and receive licences. Second, is the contradiction between the policy and public pronouncements. On one hand the policy states that: “Programmes for broadcast should be relevant to the educational, developmental, social and cultural needs of the community.” (Refer box item for the official government press release on the issue.) On the other hand a PTI news report has quoted the Information and Broadcasting Minister Priyaranjan Dasmunshi as saying that community radio stations will not be allowed to broadcast news and current affairs. This implies that local news and current happenings are not relevant


Make ICTs Work for People

The initiatives followed one of the two models: (a) producing the programmes and narrowcasting them in villages (first three examples below) and (b) producing the programmes and purchasing airtime on All India Radio (AIR) on which they are broadcast usually once a week (last two examples):

Make ICTs Work for People 46

to the needs of the community. Third, the most important community based organisation – panchayats – have been left out of the ambit of the decision. There is no reason why a panchayat cannot host a community radio station.

Though there are many outstanding issues to be resolved before a healthy and vibrant community radio is flourishing in this country, the first steps have been taken. The potential of community radio to empower citizens has been un-

leashed and it is now upto the community to make this a reality. ICTD

NISG and i4d jointly hold the copyright to the articles printed in the ICTD section of the i4d magazine and website. For permission to reprint the articles please write to the Editor i4d.

Government Press Release on Community Radio The Union Cabinet today [16 Nov 2006] decided to grant permission for setting up of Community Radio Stations to non-profit organizations and educational institutions as per the eligibility, procedure and terms and conditions given below:

ies and Autonomous Bodies and Public Trusts registered under Societies Act or any other such act relevant for the purpose. Registration at the time of application should at least be three years old. b) Educational institutions

I. The following types of organizations would be eligible to apply for Community Radio licences :

II. The following would not be eligible to run a CRS :

a) Community based organizations, which satisfy the following basic principles

a) Individuals; b) Political Parties and their affiliate organizations; including students, women’s, trade unions and such other wings affiliated to these parties. c) Organisations operating with a motive to earn profit; d) Organisations expres-sly banned by the Union and State GovernGiving voice to their aspirations ments.

i) It should be explicitly constituted as a ‘nonprofit’ organization and shall have a proven record of at least three years of service to the local community. ii) The Community Radio Station (CRS) to be operated by it should be designed to serve a specific well-defined local community. iii) It should have an ownership and management structure and is reflective of the community that the CRS seeks to serve. iv) Programmes for broadcast should be relevant to the educational, developmental, social and cultural needs of the community. v) It must be a Legal Entity i.e. it should be registered ( under the registration of Societies Act or any other such Act relevant to the purpose.

These would include civil society and voluntary organizations, State Agriculture Universities (SAUs) institutions, Krishi Vigyan Kendras, Registered Societ-


The Cabinet also authorized the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting to finalize the terms & conditions and procedures. This decision will give the following benefits:i) A strong and vibrant Community Radio System will enhance pluralism and sustain diversity of cultures and languages. ii) Strengthen decentralization and participatory governance and enable dialogues within communities. iii) Dissemination of information to the rural communities about the issues related to agriculture, education, health, social welfare etc.




Incubating the spirit of innovation The 2nd global forum of business incubation with the theme ‘empowering economies through ICT enabled innovation and entrpreneurship’ was organised by Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) along with Information for Development Programme (infoDev) of the World Bank and the Department of Science & Technology, Entrepreneurship Development Board (NSTEDB), Government of India (GOI) in association with the State Government of Andhra Pradesh, on 6-10 November at Hotel Taj Krishna, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh. Second in its order, the forum aims to nurture new ideas, innovations entrepreneurial spirit, risk taking capacities and, organisational abilities. A pre-conference informal meeting of networking groups’ was held region wise as a prelude to the five day long meet into five groups such as Africa, Asia, ECA (Eastern Europe and Central Asia), LAC (Latin American Countries), MENA (Middle East and North Africa) to discuss on the strategies evolved, and the lapses to be covered in building an enabling environment for strengthening the existing networks for further expansion of markets to identify the problems at grass root level and, on how to categorise the incubating community as potential emerging professionals.

Welcome ceremony It was followed by welcome ceremony. Rachid Benmessaoud, Operations Advisor, World Bank, Country Office, India gave a brief account of the event. N. Srinivasan, Vice President, FICCI taking over the dias emphasised on the idea of productivity through connectivity to increase profit and the delivery of infrastructure facility where incubators comes on a common platform in sharing and discussing the guidelines to SMEs, venture capital, technological outDecember 2006 |

put and creativity. V.S. Ramammurthy, Former Secretary, Department of Science and Technology, India, looking at the general trend of discouraging norms and regulations of government, just because the idea is new and stands at market risk, highlighted on incubators’ enabled partnership and sharing of ideas, that need to be encouraged for the period of two years on experiment basis to convert science and technology (S&T) entrepreneurship into a creative manpower entrepreneurship. He added

tary, National Science and Technology Entrepreneurship Development Board, India gave vote of thanks to the session. The ceremony was followed by video presentations of cases studies carried by infoDev leading to discussions between the panelists and floor. Later, the conference was declared formally to be inaugurated by the Chief Minister of the State of Andhra Pradesh, Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy. He urged the gathering for the need for transformation of public sector undertakings into lively business incubation centres, utilising the new technology to promote enterprises to generate more employment opportunities in the state.

Meet gains momentum

Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy inaugurates the event

S&T should be for economic development with motto for every one. Dr. Geeta Reddy, Minister for Tourism, Sugar and Major Industries, Commerce and Export Promotion for the State of Andhra Pradesh, graced the occasion to welcome the international gathering and urged the delegates to tap with keen acumen of business potentials in the field of IT, BT, Nano-Technology and ICT for which the state has already developed a conducive environment in providing a nurturing base for all the upcoming events of incubators. Mohsen A. Khalil, Director, World Bank Group observed that ICT is about unleashing the power of human capital. It should be coupled with management skills and ability of scalability in commercialising the ideas. Henceforth, the importance of such care opportunities for market linkages achievements cannot be undermined. H.K Mittal, Member Secre-

The second day of the session was on ‘Opportunities and Challenges in Innovation and Entrepreneurship’. Kiran Karnik, President of NASSCOM delivered the key note address saying that ‘just capacity of thinking different is to be innovative, and let allow mobility to be the key word for venturing and, that should integrate appropriately with technology, collectively for low income groups and develop an eco system where incubation facilities can availed right from funding at the early stages in providing opportunities to mentor network with others. In plenary session, I. B. Ramalinga Raju, Chairman, Satyam Computers India, sharing his fifteen years of experience of moulding the foundation said “we re-invent to sustain”. “Innovation is not choice, if you won’t innovate you will die”. Frank Jones, President of Intel India spoke on smart ideas that come out of systematic process. Hence investment should be made on training and education to nurture a friendly environment balancing between bureaucracy and environment policies. Prof. Rafiq, Dossani,


President, Standford University, USA stressed the need for a knowledge economy to be stabilised to meet the pressing challenges of creating a new horizon in employment arena, especially in developing countries. Vani Kola, representing NewPath Ventures, India talked on the success factor that depends on ability to identify entrepreneurs for upcoming generation and building an eco system that need to realise, where market and entrepreneuers meet by removing the barriers. Ganesh Natarajan, Deputy Chairman and Managing Director, Zensar Technologies, India calls for an inclusive innovation method to make them part of the global community. He also asked to replicate the global methods at regional level. The second plenary moderated by Ashok Jhunjunwala, started wth Sailesh Shah, Director and Senior Vice President, Satyam Computers, India. He wished the change to be ever-dynamic process to stay fit and sound in the market. Rick Ellinger, CEO, Wirless Communication Alliance, USA stressed on the will to network, to reinvent and invest region wise to incubate the young enterprises. Srini Raju, CEO of iLabs, India emphasised on e-Solutions to meet the competing players in fragmented markets. Anne Larilahti, Head of Strategic Marketing New Growth Markets, Nokia asked to create an e-Platform coupled with a regulatory environment to establish an affordable connectivity, the crucial factor that enables business develop and sustain. Madhu Mehta, Chief Mentor/Architect of Nirma Labs, India focused on effective application of ICT in causing the birth and growth of STD/PCOs - an attend pay phone system, and what Nirma Lab had did in this direction. He called for an ICT environment and technology penetration for enhancing innovation, that realises the purpose of incubation, a complete cycle of enabling process. The theme of Plenary III was ‘Facilitating ICT-enabled Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Who are the key stakeholders? What is the role of business incubators?’ It was chaired by Estelle Sowah, from Ghana. H.K Mittal of NSTDB, India stressed five ‘I’s –Investment, Industry, Information, Ideas and Individuals that demands for a seed support system. Vivek Chaudhry, info Dev, USA explicity expressed that innovation is a free spirit that can occur any where without proper definitions and his organisation is happy to give a caring hand to improve performance of such enterprises. Pham Minnh Tuan, Vice Director, CRC Incubator, Vietnam discussed on face to face incubation process where leveraging partnerships create snow ball effects in generating newer ventures. Marcelo Vasquez, Vice President, Chile discussed on development of certain key elements and externalities to facilitate for ICT environments for innovation. Plenary IV ‘Incubators Networks: Global and Regional Perspectives’ was chaired by Seth Ayers of info Dev. The regional network discussions were held to stimulate for arrival of strategic recommendations and conclusions on the final day under representative heads. The third day of the meet started with a complementary speech by Janat Muwaya, Minister for Tourism, Uganda. She stressed on the importance of advocating and lobbying capabilities and, added the constant need of training for Incubation Managers to avoid stagnancy. She told ICT enabled SME is the better way to empower people and to address the issue of poverty of any developing nation. It was subsequently followed by the session on ‘Financing Technology Entrepreneurs’ chaired by Paul Asel, Principal Investment


Officer, IFC. It concentrated on the existing financial mechanisms that come in aid to the growth of technology that fosters entrepreneurs and small businesses and gave guidelines on how to make a right approach Dignitaries of a panel towards the funders. It also made a review of challenges faced in developing nations. Seth Ayers of info Dev, A.S. Rao, Advisor, Department of Scientific and Industrial Research, Government of India, Deepak Amin, CEO of Covelix, USA, Kumar Ashish, of ICICI Bank, Balaji Srinivas, Managing Partner, Aureos - Bangalore (India) were the other prominent panelists. This gave way for break up for parallel sessions into three: ‘Introducing to Finance: The Investor’s Perspective’, ‘Designing and Operating Sustainable Business Incubators: An Incubator’s Life-Cycle’, and ‘The Role of Incubators in Enabling Innovation and New Business Creation in Poor and Rural Communities’. In the afternoon too sessions were split in similar fashion: ‘Entrepreneurship, Training and Linkages with Educational Institutions’, ‘Sustainability: Business Models, Pricing and Financing’ and, ‘Incubator Service Offerings: Identifying and Meeting Client Needs’. This culminated in joint session on ‘Global and Regional Action Plan Discussions’ on iDISC (infoDev Resource Centre) as a global and knowledge sharing tool. This was further opened to break out of groups in region wise for discussions. On the fourth day also, after plenary I on ‘Impacts and Lessons of the Global Incubation Network’, further thematic break outs were made targeting the thematic concerns of the regions.

Strategic recommendation points On the final day, regional incubators representatives presented reports on the objectives for their regional-networks and elaborated on action plan for their next six months. Some of the strategic recommendations, plans and policy suggestions, that emerged collectively are as follows: • Need to link incubators and technology parks to national innovation system that remains fragmented, • Need for proactive measures, on the demand side, promoting wider use of ICT by households and enterprises, • Need for inter institutional partnership to address the constrains to innovation and entrepreneurship, • Engage donor community via info Dev for advocacy and funding in each region, • Recognition for the need for transparency and openness to reduce corruption, • Giving importance to public-private partnerships and links with universities to develop more entrepreneurial academic exercises and institutes, • Raising ICT literacy among specialists and entrepreneurs alike, etc. The closing ceremony read the notes on ‘ role and way ahead’ based on points evolved over the five days by info Dev speakers in global networking. Later, the forum participants were taken for industrial site visits of Hyderabad’s leading technology companies. Reported by Ajitha Saravanan, i4d | December 2006

What’s on Africa 28-30 May, 2007 eLearning Africa 2007 Nairobi, Kenya

8-11 October, 2007 Broadband World Forum Europe 2007 Estrel Convention Centre,Berlin


Australia 7-8 March, 2007 23rd Annual Conference, ATUG 2007 AustralianTechnology Park, Sydney

20-21March, 2007 Wireless World 2007 Sydney Convention & Exhibition Centre

Brazil 27-30 May, 2007 9th International Conference on Social Implications of Computers in Developing Countries Paulista Plaza Hotel, São Paulo, Brazil


6-12 January, 2007 International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence (IJCAI) Hyderabad

Italy 26-29 March, 2007 Fiera Milano Congressi C5 World Forum

CSDMS Events 6-8 February, 2007 eGovAsia 2007, Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC), Malaysia

Japan 22-25 January, 2007 3G Mobile World Forum New Otani Makuhari Hotel Tokyo, Japan

Spain 12-15 February, 2007 Wireless developer forum Barcelona. 07 Hotel Barcelo Sants event.asp?ecode=CD1043

United Kingdom 10-13 January, 2007 BETT, The Educational Technology Show Olympia, London

United States 8-11 January, 2007 International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) Las Vegas

3-6 December, 2007 ITU TELECOM EUROPE Sofia, Bulgaria

6-8 February, 2007 DLAsia 2007, Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC), Malaysia

Dubai 16 January, 2007 12th Dubtech Government ICT Summit Al Murooj Rotana Hotel, Dubai

6-8 February, 2007 ATF 2007, Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC), Malaysia

Germany 22-23rd February, 2007 2nd Annual CELTIC Event 2007 Haupstadtrepräsentanz of Deutsche Telekom, Berlin

15-21 March, 2007 CeBIT Hannover

14-17 January, 2007 Pacific Telecom Council 07 Conference Hawaii

22-24 January, 2007 FMCA Ramada Plaza, San Francisco, USA

6-8 February, 2007 eHealth Asia2007 Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC), Malaysia

29 January-1 February, 2007 Design Con 2007 Santa Clara Convention Centre Santa Clara, California

6-8 February, 2007 mServe Asia2007 Putrajaya International Convention Centre (PICC), Malaysia

9-10 May, 2007 GovSec Washington DC

Get your event listed here. December 2006 |



HIV prevalence and need based resources Let’s see at a glance how many people in the world are affected by HIV/AIDS. Here is the latest estimate on regional HIV and AIDS statistics and features, 2003 and 2005. Country Sub-Saharan Africa

Years 2005 2003

North Africa and Middle East

2005 2003


2005 2003


2005 2003

Latin America

2005 2003


2005 2003

Eastern Europe and Central Asia

2005 2003

North America, Western and Central Europe

2005 2003


2005 2003

Adults (15+) and children living with HIV 24.5 million [21.6–27.4 million] 23.5 million [20.8–26.3 million] 440 000 [250 000–720 000] 380 000 [220 000–620 000] 8.3 million [5.7–12.5 million] 7.6 million [5.2–11.3 million] 78 000 [48 000–170 000] 66 000 [41 000–140 000] 1.6 million [1.2–2.4 million] 1.4 million [1.1–2.0 million] 330 000 [240 000–420 000] 310 000 [230 000–400 000] 1.5 million [1.0–2.3 million] 1.1 million [790 000–1.7 million] 2.0 million [1.4–2.9 million] 1.8 million [1.3–2.7 million] 38.6 million [33.4–46.0 million] 36.2 million [31.4–42.9 million]

Where does Asia stand? • Some 8.3 million people were living with HIV in Asia at the end of 2005 • More than two-thirds of them in one country, India; • Over a quarter of the total number of people living with HIV in Asia were adult women 2.4 million; • An estimated 180,000 children were living with HIV; • Approximately 930,000 people were newly infected with HIV in 2005, while AIDS claimed an estimated 600,000 lives; • The number of people receiving antiretroviral therapy rose from 70,000 in 2003 to 180,000 at the end of 2005; • About one in six people (16%) in need of antiretroviral treatment in Asia are now receiving it; • HIV prevalence has been declining in four states in India, in Cambodia and in Thailand; • HIV prevalence is increasing in some countries including China, Indonesia and Viet Nam, and there are signs of HIV outbreaks in Bangladesh and Pakistan.

Resource Needs In 2005, a total of US$ 8.3 billion was estimated to be available for AIDS funding; this figure is estimated to rise to US$ 8.9 billion in 2006 and US$ 10 billion in 2007. But it falls short of what is needed — US$ 14.9 billion in 2006, US$ 18.1 billion in 2007 and US$ 22.1 billion in 2008. For treatment and care, about 55% of these resources will be needed in Africa, 20% in Asia and the Pacific, 17% in Latin America and the Caribbean, 7% in Eastern Europe and 1% in North Africa and the Near East. Totals for 2006 - 2008

AIDS Resource Needs (US$ billion)








Treatment and care





Orphans and vulnerable children





Programme costs





Human resources











Source: 2 0 0 6 Report on the Global AIDS Epidemic, Global fact and figures ’06, (


i4d | December 2006

6-8 February, 2007 Putrajaya International Convention Centre, Malaysia

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HIV/AIDS : December 2006 Issue  
HIV/AIDS : December 2006 Issue  

i4d encompasses the role and relevance of ICT in various development sectors such as Rural Development, Gender, Governance, Micro-finance, E...