e-STAS – Symposium on Technologies for Social Action – Day 1

Image CC by Fumero

Image CC by Fumero

Today was the first day of e-STAS Symposium on Technologies for Social Action. I arrived yesterday here in Malaga and was picked up from the airport and brought to the hotel where all the speakers are staying. In the evening we started socializing and I was introduced (in the real world) to Ken Banks, Christian Kreutz, Jack Dorsey just to name a few of all the interesting people. We had kind of an informal dinner and discussed the actions and topics for day 1 of e-STAS. Today we got up quite early and a bus took us to the venue. We got our name tags and the publication where a saw our article “ICTs for the empowerment of citizens” printed on paper. Very nice.

As Adrian Mangin promised, the event is highly interactive and everybodies voice is heard. As usual, Ismael Peña-López started taking notes and publish them in real time. It was very fascinating sitting next to him and watching him “power-blogging”. Here is his outcome chonologically:

The only missing piece was a workshop, where all the people split into groups and were trying to find a definition for the term “Empowerment”. I was apointed to be the moderator of the bunch of all English speaking guys and we brought up a lot of issues. This will be covered by a separate blog post ASAP.

I was also participating in a round table on Empowerment (see Ismaels link above and the picture) with Bárbara Navarro, Google.es, Luis Millán Vázquez, FUNDECYT and expert at UN-GAID and Fernando Bothelo, Literacy Bridge which was moderated by Idelfonso Mayorgas. Everybody was introduced and had a 2 minutes pitch before we got into medias res. I was the only one speaking English, so I had to stick to my headset with the transation. We brought up our visions and sights on empowerment and I tried to put the focus on the developing world and proposed that we have to educate the people there and let them empower themself. A second topic was cloud computing, where I brought up the lack of computing power and storage capability of mobile devices which are so much growing and cloud computing as a natural result of this. I said that there is open source software for building a cloud system and everybody is able to build it’s own cloud and sticking to e.g. Google is in the long run just a matter of cost (big clouds shoud be cheaper). Another argument we had was on the “information / knowledge / innovation society” which was put into the spotlight by Luis. I said: The problem with this is, that all the information and knowledge is mostly available in written form and in English, so all the illiterate people are not part of it, so it is matter of accessibility. But I insisted later, that this is just a matter of time and the problem should be solved sooner or later.

I will get the video of the round table tomorrow and will push it on youtube.

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e-STAS – Symposium on Technologies for Social Action – Day 1
was published on 26.03.2009 by Martin Konzett. It files under global
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Article: ICTs for the empowerment of citizens

Here comes our contribution to e-STAS – Symposium on Technologies for Social Action – next month in Malaga, Spain. I will attend the symposium and will meet great people and make new friends, all of them ruling ICT4D. Adrien Mangin which is co-organizing the event invited us to attend, so we just said yes and we spontaneously made up this article. It is only the first draft but kind of stable. Enjoy:

How do Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) influence society in Lesser Developed Countries (LDCs)? In our opinion, ICTs are the most promising tools that can shift the power balance between the rich, the poor, the institutions and the people to be offered in decades. In areas such as democracy, journalism or the business/financial sector, new and innovative movements are emerging, empowering the poorest of the poor. The first part of this article attempts to express our views on how this is being accomplished and provide examples demonstrating the enormous power of Information and Communication Technologies for Development, known as ICT4D. The second part of this article suggests a research approach and methodology that we use to evaluate how people in LDCs interact with ICTs using a User Centered Design approach, which what we also call UCD4D.

Full text: Article: ICTs for the empowerment of citizens

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Article: ICTs for the empowerment of citizens
was published on 22.02.2009 by Martin Konzett. It files under global
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