⇓ More from ICTworks

The Bi-Weekly ICT4D Retrospective: Important Links for May 23 – June 5, 2012

By Sabina Behague on June 5, 2012


eLearning Africa 2012: You’d have to be living under a rock not to have known about the eLearning conference last week. The 7th International Conference on ICT for Development, Education, and Training (eLearning Africa 2012) was held May 23-25 in Cotonou, Benin, and the full report on the conference is now available for free download here. The report is based on a detailed survey of nearly five hundred education professionals across the continent, and marks the first significant attempt to provide a snapshot of how ICT and better connectivity are believed to be changing the face of education in Africa. The eLearning Africa Report provides regular, yearly snapshots of the eLearning experience in Africa, with the aim of fostering richer, more nuanced conversations, healthier decision-making and more effective action-taking towards ensuring Education for All in Africa.

Mobile Technology’s Future: Shaping the Future – Realising the potential of informal learning through mobile is a must-read. The GSMA has published this interesting report (just in time for the eLearning conference in Benin) that looks at how mLearning plays a crucial role in the education and life prospects of young people in emerging markets. The report demonstrates that the time is right for the mobile industry, the international development community, and governments to collaborate and create services that will have a profound impact on the lives of young people. The study looks at Ghana, Morocco, Uganda and India, identifying young people’s aspirations and priorities, exploring the education and employment challenges they face, and scrutinizing their mobile phone use. In the developing world, mobile phones are clearly more than gossiping tools for young people. Read this!

Crowdsourcing in Crisis: It’s been over two years since the devastating earthquake in Haiti, and a full report on the first use of crowdsourcing for disaster response will soon be published in the Journal of Information Retrieval. Despite the scale of the earthquake, most of the communication infrastructure remained intact. The Haitian community came together via radio and mobile phones to share information about the quickly changing conditions: the locations of operational clinics and hospitals, information about missing people, the status of the international relief efforts that were arriving in the country. Most of the international relief workers arriving in the country did not speak Haitian Kreyol or know the geography of Haiti. Haitian engineers established a number in Haiti, “4636,” that anybody could send a text message to for free. In an effort called Mission 4636, Kreyol and French speakers worked on crowdsourcing platforms to translate, categorize, geolocate, and extract missing person information from the text messages. The structured data, now in English, was streamed directly back to the relief efforts in Haiti, with a typical turnaround of just five minutes. Mission 4636 was able to process more information than the next ten humanitarian crowdsourcing deployments combined. The manuscript is available online for free in advance of the publication here.

eCommerce in the Middle East: This interesting little piece states that while ecommerce in the Middle East has grown 300% in the last year, 70% of these transactions are COD. My question is why? There is plenty of money in the Middle East, so I’m not surprised that people are spending more of it purchasing goods online, but is Internet security so bad there that people refuse to use credit cards? Clearly I’m missing something, because living in the U.S., I didn’t even know that making online purchases without a credit card was possible. Can someone please enlighten me?

To get these links faster, follow me on Twitter: @SabinaBehague


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International development professional (and mom), living in DC metro area. I am focused on ICT and education, with mad writing and editing skills, proposal development acumen, and Latin America and Africa experience.
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