ICT4D.at becomes first partner of the Digital-Environment System Coalition

Recently, we got contacted by Tim Unwin, current chairholder of the UNESCO Chair in ICT4D and with which we had the pleasure to work with earlier. He had launched a new networking initative to collate knowledge about the entanglements and limitations where the digital and physical worlds encounter. This initiative is called the “Digital-Environment System Coalition” (DESC) and it is currently searching for supporters.

preliminary DESC logo

Why we need this coalition

Not only since the COVID-19 pandemic have we seen that digital technologies being touted as the solution for almost everything. But can they really ever be? Of course, given our human condition that is social by nature, physical meetings can never be fully replaced by virtual ones – but besides that there are also physical limitations to digitalisation, and the DESC initative tries to shed lights on the blind spots we have here. There has been extensive research on many aspects of the environmental impact of digital technologies, but much of this has been discipline specific. There remains no overarching holistic model or understanding of these impacts.

This initiative is fundamentally multi-disciplinary, cross-sectoral, international and policy oriented. It tries to engage academics, companies, civil society organisations, international organisations and governments. By doing that, we hope to have the scope to address the big issues necessary for crafting an appropriate holistic system model. The aim is to develop policy reports and publications with recommendations that help ensuring digital technologies in the long-term interests of citizens and planet earth.

ICT4D.at aboard!

As the first organisation we took the invitation to join the coalition with hopefully many to follow. We are looking forward to working together with researchers and practitioners from all different disciplines and backgrounds on enhancing our holistic understanding of the inter-relationships between digital technologies and the physical environment. Currently, the coalition is designing the framework we will work under, consolidates a steering group and starts with shaping working groups.

If you are interested in joining the Digital-Environment System Coalition as well, short expressions of interest can be submitted through the UNESCO Chair in ICT4D’s contact page.

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ICT4D.at becomes first partner of the Digital-Environment System Coalition
was published on 11.08.2021 by Isabella Wagner. It files under global
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Impressions of the 2012 EU-Africa Cooperation Forum on ICT

From November 28-29 ICT4D.at was participating at the 2012 EU-Africa Cooperation Forum on ICT in Lisbon, Portugal and successfully presenting the ICT4D.MZ project to the community of experts, researchers, business people and policy makers in the context of ICT and EU-African partnerships.

ICT4D.at @ 2012 Africa-EU Cooperation Forum on ICT

ICT4D.at @ 2012 Africa-EU Cooperation Forum on ICT

The hashtag for the event was and we covered the main panels and discussions live via our Twitterfeed. The steady stream of acronyms, abbreviations and ICT lingo fits nicely in the limited microblogging format and it was a good way to make sense of all the information coming up. The twitterwall behind the speakers’ panel was good for grasping the main talking points, but a bit of a distraction when presented during an ongoing session. It also functioned as an indirect Q&A-session for the audience to bring up issues not covered in the session. Thus the meta-reality feedback loop was complete.

The informative Welcoming speeches included talks by Commissioners from both the African and the European Union (Moctar Yedaly and Zoran Stančič). A Keynote Address by Ilari Patrick Lindy from the World Bank Institute draw our attention to an interesting study on eTransformation of ICT in Africa. Harry De Backer from the EEAS (European External Action Service) was giving an overview in how ICT funding has changed in the recent years.

EU-Africa Cooperation Forum on ICT - Group Picture

EU-Africa Cooperation Forum on ICT – Group Picture

We were happy to find out about other innovative projects in the field, such as the KINU Hub in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania co-founded by Catherinerose Barrett and the *iHub in Nairobi, Kenya presented by Jessica Colaço. Furthermore we were happy to meet Walter Mayer from ProGIS Software, an expert in Geo-information system and Felipe Batista from ARCTEL-CPLP, the Association of Communication and Telecommunication Regulators in the Community of Portuguese Speaking Countries. We can also proudly report, that we have witnessed the official launch of the UbuntuNet Alliance and Africa-Connect.

The whole event was executed flawlessly by the very welcoming hosts, a rich experience and a overall nice time in the beautiful city of Lisboa. Obrigada! Obrigado!





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Impressions of the 2012 EU-Africa Cooperation Forum on ICT
was published on 05.12.2012 by Isabella Wagner. It files under global
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Global ITU Study on Information Society

New figures released recently by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), an agency under the United Nations, rank the Republic of Korea as the world’s most advanced ICT economy, followed by Sweden, Iceland, Denmark, and Finland.

The new data, released in ITU’s flagship annual report ‘Measuring the Information Society 2011’, show that information and communication technology uptake continues to accelerate worldwide, spurred by a steady fall in the price of telephone and broadband Internet services.

A key feature of the report is the ICT Development Index (IDI), which ranks 152 countries according to their level of ICT access, use and skills, and compares 2008 and 2010 scores.

The top ten IDI 2010 economies are (in order of their ranks) the Republic of Korea, Sweden, Iceland, Denmark, Finland, Hong Kong (China), Luxembourg, Switzerland, Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.

Most countries at the top of the ranking are from Europe and Asia Pacific, and they largely correspond to the world’s high-income economies, given the strong correlation between the level of ICT development and GDP.

Article Source: AsianScientist

Full report: ITU website

Full report: PDF






Global ITU Study on Information Society
was published on 21.09.2011 by Isabella Wagner. It files under global
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World Telecommunication and Information Society Day

The World Telecommunication and Information Society Day (WTISD) aims to help raise awareness of the possibilities that the use of the Internet and other information and communication technologies (ICT) can bring to societies and economies, as well as of ways to bridge the digital divide.

17 May marks the anniversary of the signing of the first International Telegraph Convention and the creation of the International Telecommunication Union.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/davidden/372310312/

By DavidDennisPhotos.com

Theme 2011: Better Life in Rural Communities with ICTs
This year, World Telecommunication and Information Society Day highlights the theme “Better life in rural communities with ICTs”, which was adopted by ITU Council in 2009 and follows up on the theme for 2010: “Better city, better life with ICTs”.

ICTs are increasingly in demand to meet the Millennium Development Goals. In the rural context, ICTs provide enhanced opportunities to generate income and combat poverty, hunger, ill health and illiteracy..

Half the world’s population resides in rural districts and far flung communities. This half — three billion people — represent the poorer, less educated, and more deprived cousins of our urban citizens. They are also among the least connected to the benefits of ICTs. We cannot allow this situation to continue.

Source: ITU





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World Telecommunication and Information Society Day
was published on 17.05.2011 by Isabella Wagner. It files under global
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Launch of Africa Portal

The Africa Portal is an online knowledge resource offering researchers and opinion leaders a forum to share their insights on Africa and publish their work on pressing areas of concern to policymakers and the public. It aims to fill the gap in accessibility to research and information on policy issues on the continent.

A key feature of the Africa Portal is the online library collection, holding over 2,500 books, journals and digital documents relating to African policy issues.  The entire online repository is open access and available for free full-text download. A portion of the digital documents housed in the library have been digitised for the first time as an undertaking of the Africa Portal project.

The project is a collaborative undertaking between South African Institute of International Affairs SAIIA, the Centre for International Governance Innovation in Canada, and Makerere University in Uganda.

http://www.africaportal.org/






Launch of Africa Portal
was published on 25.01.2011 by Isabella Wagner. It files under global
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Green IT @ IR 11.0

This year’s Internet Research conference in Göteborg / Sweden has a special focus on sustain

ability, thus one of the key note speeches is dealing with Green IT.

Peter Arnfalk from the International Institute for Industrial Environmental

Economics at Lund University presents the concept of how we might ensure sustainable development by ‘greening’ of and greening through IT. This includes all three pillars of sustainability – environmental, social and economic interests.

As the electric energy used for IT will double within next 5 years and we are already producing millions of tons of e-waste a year, some of those valuable, some hazardous, some both, it is absolutely time to make our IT related patterns more efficient. There are several concepts concerning Green IT, reaching from greening IT products, over de-materialization (e.g.: ‘paper-free office’), to new functional solutions in society (e-banking, e-care, teleworking, online meetings,…) and environmental applications of IT (measuring air/water quality,…). These concepts partially are picked out and instrumentalized on various political levels: supranational (OECD), international (EU) and national (in Arnfalk’s example: Sweden). But there hasn’t been enough research on Green IT (partially due to a lack of funding and related funding policies) so it is not always sure that such environmental policies really improve our usage patterns… or did you know that the total CO2 emissions from e-mail are 7-20 times higher than postal mail?

There is another issue Arnfalk singles out as major challenge of the Green IT idea: What happens after we rationalized our processes, made our energy usage perfectly efficient and are able to save a decent amount of resources? It is obvious that we would use these resources to produce more goods and increase consumption… So in parallel our consumption patterns should be adapted to be sustainable as well!

Links:

IR 11.0

Keynotes @ IR 11.0 ||  The presentation slides will be put online soon!

Peter Arnfalk @ IIIEE at Lund University

The Green IT Report ||  Related blog





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Green IT @ IR 11.0
was published on 22.10.2010 by Isabella Wagner. It files under global
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ICT4D.at @ EASST Conference 2010

This year’s motto of the European Association of the Study of Science and Technology was “Practicing Science and Technology, Perfoming the Social”. Visiting Europe’s core conference in my field of research, I was fascinated to find a whole track dealing with North/South devide and development issues. Here is a review of this track: About the Sense and Nonsense of a ‘Development’ Label

I was lucky to meet interesting people also studying and operating within ICT4D. During an inofficial gathering of people working in international development context, we had interesting discussions and made plans for publishing together. The initiators were Lara Houston, Christine Richter, Gianluca Miscione and
Norman Schräpel who plans to have a closer look on Rwanda’s ICT policy. Hope to see some of you again at the ICTD Conference in London in December!

My part at the EASST conference in Trento was the presentation and discussion of a paper on video ethnography experience in Kenya together with two of my co-authors Rick B. Duque and Sonja Weber. I am happy to report that the enriching discussion with other scientists working with video as a method offered a lot of inputs and tips for our forthcoming TV documentary series ‘addICT’ on OKTO TV starting with next year.






ICT4D.at @ EASST Conference 2010
was published on 02.09.2010 by Isabella Wagner. It files under global
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Hello Africa on OKTO!

OKTO

> visit OKTO!

Our documentary Hello Africa will be broadcasted via OKTO -Vienna’s public participatory television station. The channel can be recieved via Cable in Vienna region or online via webstream/IPTV.

Broadcasting dates:

Saturday, 19 June, 9:15 pm

Sunday, 20 June, 7:15 pm

Saturday, 26 June, 10:30 pm

Detailed program on OKTO





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Hello Africa on OKTO!
was published on 17.06.2010 by Isabella Wagner. It files under global
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