InDIITA Workshop 2022

InDIITA poster at the IIITB campus

In an email Paul sent me after he attended the World Summit on the Information Society, he mentioned the InDIITA workshop organized by IEEE in Bengaluru. InDIITA stands for Dignity, Inclusion, Identity, Trust, and Agency. Since I am working near Bengaluru, I immediately took the chance to attend the workshop. The location of the workshop was in the beautiful Ramanujam building within the IIIT-B Campus. For setting the two days agenda, the Open Space Technology concept was used, which was totally new to me, and to be honest, I could not imagine how such a workshop would be like. Before beginning each day, the agenda was dynamically set by the participants themselves. Topics and talks were proposed and put into time slots spread throughout the day. Afterwards participants could freely move between sessions. I really liked the four principles

  1. Whoever comes are the right people
  2. Whatever happens, is the only thing that could have
  3. Whenever it starts is the right time
  4. Whenever it’s over, it’s over

and the law of Open Space Technology

  • The law of two feet/motion & responsibility – If you find yourself in any situation where you are neither learning nor contributing, respectfully get up and go somewhere that you will be!

The expectations

To be honest, I was a little bit nervous at the beginning. Thoughts like “What if there are only a few participants and everyone comes up with a really nice session except for me?”, “Everyone is rooted in the Indian tech scene, except for me. Hopefully, I can connect with people.”, or “Will during the workshop also many cultural events like candle lighting or dance performances happen?”

A colleague and good friend at the college where I am volunteering told me before I headed to Bengaluru that I should have no expectations and just go with whatever comes to benefit the most from the workshop end enjoy every moment. It is hard to adapt that kind of thinking anyways, but yeah, she was absolutely right, and it also aligned pretty well with the four principles and the one law of Open Space Technology.

The sessions

The sessions were an interesting mixture of topics about various technical and social aspects. Since participants came up with really interesting topics, it was really sad that I could not attend all of them.

Day 1

  • Blockchain and Web 3.0 – Intro to Metaverse
  • Multi Party Privacy
  • Interested in Standards in the area of Security in Biometrics
  • Intrusion Detection System
  • Algorithmic Bias/Industrial AI
  • Introduction to Foundation ID
  • Fairness in Platform Labour
  • Privacy and AI
  • Identity v/s Privacy
I got a gift from Nikhil

The first day started with a really interesting session and also a discussion about Blockchain and Web 3.0. The team from Lumos Labs did a great job in introducing Blockchain, how Blockchain works, NFTs, and Web 3.0 to a mixed audience of people who already know and also people who are new to those topics. They are really passionate about Web 3.0 and also about educating and spreading knowledge about that important topic. In a distributed future, Blockchain indeed plays its role, but is not every time the solution of any use case and/or problem. There are also other concepts, not only but also the Fediverse, that should also be taken into consideration when building some decentralized applications to solve a specific problem. Another interesting tool for building distributed applications is the Distributed Application Runtime (Dapr). There is a really great talk from Rodrigo Díaz Concha about Dapr and .NET at the NDC Porto 2022.

Rodrigo Díaz Concha – Build powerful distributed applications with Dapr and .NET – NDC Porto 2022

At the IndiaFOSS 2.0 conference, I got introduced to another really interesting tool called Beckn for creating open and decentralized applications.

Beckn is an open protocol that allows local businesses across any industry to be discovered and engaged by any beckn-enabled application


Also, many kudos to Osheen Mahajan for the very nice presentation, and thanks to Nikhil Aparajit for the lovely gift – an IEEE USB stick.

Another interesting session on day 1 was “Fairness in Platform Labor”. Please don’t mistake me – all sessions were really interesting. The team from Fairwork introduced the project’s goal, principles, how companies get rated, and some ratings of platform work companies that make business in India.

Our goal is to show that better, and fairer jobs are possible in the platform economy.

The Fairwork project

The rating or scoring is based on the five principles fair pay, fair conditions, fair contracts, fair management, and fair representation. Points for the fulfilment of the next principles will be only given if the previous principles are fulfilled (e.g. if fair pay is not fulfilled, then there cannot be any points for the next principles like fair conditions, fair contracts, …). In India, the most common mobility-as-a-service providers (e.g. Uber, Ola) score 0 points in the ratings of 2021 in India. If you are interested, there are also ratings for companies in Austria in 2022.

The gig economy is growing fast, but workers on these platforms often experience low pay, poor conditions, and a lack of job security.

The Fairwork project

If you are interested in supporting the work of Fairwork, check out (or even join) the pledge on their website.

Day 2

  • Build your first decentralized application
  • Biometric Device Identity
  • Identity in IoT
  • Cost of Privacy
  • IEEE P2989 Authentication in a multi-server environment/Privacy Preserving Machine learning
  • Technologies for Transparency in Governance
  • Agriculture – The Good, Bad, Ugly of the Technology
  • No Laptop, No Problem – Utilize Smartphones to bring software development to everyone

At the beginning of the second day, it looked like we have to finish the day early because only a few people showed up at the start time. But this was only caused to the mixture of the rain together with the heavy traffic in Bengaluru on that day. So after a while, people came and at the end of the day, we even struggled to finish all sessions on time.

Again, the team of Lumos Labs held a nice interactive workshop on how to deploy a smart contract using Ethereum. We used Solidity for creating the smart contract and used a bootstrapped project from the Scaffold-ETH GitHub repo.

Afterwards there was a really interesting introduction to a new standard P2989 for authentication in a multi-server environment, that is currently in work. The working group is still being formed, and there was a kick-off meeting in July 2022.

My session
My second gift

I also got the chance to speak a little bit about what I am currently doing at a rural college in Andhra Pradesh and to show some insights and experiences I collected so far. On this day I also got a second gift. Some really tasty chocolate that looked like Ferrero Rocher, but it was an Indian brand called Only Chocolate.

Overall, it was an exceptionally nice experience and I enjoyed the company for two days of so many passionate people who want to use technology to improve people’s lives and help society a lot. It really motivates me to continue finding solutions and exploring new things on how to include as many people as possible in the education of Software Development. All sessions were really interesting and also interactive. A lot of discussions happened during the sessions and also during breaks. I also got many new connections and someone shared an interesting platform provided by the Indian government about knowledge sharing, that I will definitely check out more. The platform is called Digital Infrastructure for Knowledge Sharing.

A huge thanks to the organizing team and the awesome participants who, together, created such an awesome and memorable workshop. I am already looking forward to the next awesome event. Hopefully it will be also based on the Open Space Technology! Of course, I will keep you posted.

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InDIITA Workshop 2022
was published on 28.08.2022 by Raimund Rittnauer. It files under south asia
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2018 IFIP WG 9.4 and an Interactive Workshop about Sexual Harassment via Mobile Phones

In the heart of the beautiful Tirana, the capital of the surprising modern and dynamic Albania, the IFIP WG 9.4 conference took place. I was invited to present my work and also co-chair with Tim Unwin a paper and demo session regarding Equality and Safety issues with Digital Innovations. Tim and I wanted to mix up the session a bit to try out something unusual.

Before the conference, we started to discuss the issue of sexual harassment via mobile phones, after I read his blog post concerning the findings of their research. I proposed a, as we call it now, flawed solution to the problem. I designed a simple mobile application to register sexual harassers and warn victims. I wanted to start a discussion. Quite quickly all the drawbacks of potential abuse, legal implications, data management/ownership, etc arose. So, we got stuck in finding a good solution to empower victims of sexual harassment (via mobile phones) in developing countries.

We then decided to bring the topic to the table of the conference and use the participants to brainstorm for other and foremost better solutions. The goal was to break my programmed engineering thinking and use the diverse minds of our demo and paper session track to come up with something much better. The goal was not a technology, but anything which could empower the victims. The topic was intentionally set very broad to not limit the flow of ideas. This was also challenging, since there were no boundaries and many questions arose during the brainstorming. Furthermore, solving this complex in just workshop is unrealistic, but we were willing to try our best.
We formed groups, I introduced the concept of the Brainwriting-Pool (see our IFIP workshop slides for an explanation) and we tried to generate as many ideas as possible. We only had 45 minutes to discuss and brainstorm together. While some groups kept stuck in great discussions, others were quite productive and proposed many ideas of what we could do. One of the participants opened her heart and shared her story of harassment via mobile phones, which gave us a much better understanding of the topic. This once more showed the importance of including the targeted user group in the design process. Of course, we did not solve the issue in the 45 minutes, but many key points and ideas were stated. Ideas were put out to

  • create an anonyms social network for victims to connect with others and find help.
  • To visualize the harassment to show that this is a big issue and to illustrate that victims are not alone.
  • Make it easier for victims to defend themselves by offering information material on how to legally fight back. Illustrate the rights of every person.
  • When harassed by mobile phones, then the harassment is actually documented by call logs and text messages. This offers a new way of using this as a prove of harassment against the harasser and visualize the attack.
  • Translate sexual rights and women rights into pictograms and make them accessible to everyone.
  • Better illustrate that sexual harassment is not the fault of the victim and that they have a right to dignity.
  • Create mobile awareness campaigns.
  • Provide a quick help by offering options to victims to protect themselves.
  • A place where victims can share their story anonymously. To make it first possible to talk about the incident in a safe environment and also help others to understand that they are not the only ones going through such a difficult time.
  • Provide call centres with no charges and ensure anonymity.
  • A self-defence Drone you can launch to film your harasser and document the incident.
  • Better offer statistics about incidents to trigger a discussion and create awareness.
  • A “one button click” to connect one victim to another to reach out for help and understanding.
  • Create a SMS based one/two-way communication with empowering and motivating messages. Also offer a smart phone application.
  • Implement a general filter to block harassment content entirely form your platform. Have a “Right to delete” content on the Internet.

Many more issues, problems and ideas were discussed and mentioned. The possibilities and challenges are there, the sensitive topic of sexual harassment is too often ignored and our workshop underlined that we need to put a spotlight on this issue. ICT can do good, but also too often bad. It is our responsibility to also discuss the dark side of the technologies we promote and to be aware that ICTs are not always shiny and golden.

All of this was possible due to Kutoma Wakunuma and Sirkku Männikkö Barbutiu who also presented their profound work in our track. They agreed beforehand to shorten their presentations to give us the stage to carry out our workshop. I would like to again express my gratitude and recommend reading their valuable contributions:

Kutoma Wakunuma: Hey women can play dirty too! Social media Building and Construction – A tale of empowerment in the developing world

Sirkku Männikkö Barbutiu: A Facebook Account of Ones Own

I would also like to thank Endrit, the conference chair, who gave us the opportunity and a big thank you to Tim, for supporting me in my work.

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2018 IFIP WG 9.4 and an Interactive Workshop about Sexual Harassment via Mobile Phones
was published on 09.07.2018 by Paul Spiesberger. It files under eastern and central europe, global
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foreverloops – making music with gears

Is it a game? Is it an application? Is it an instrument? A tool maybe? … Well everyone of these answers might be right.
Another question: What is the connection between gears and music?
In this case the answer is simple: foreverloops.

The interface of foreverloops

In September i met Ulrich from foreverloops at the “Play Austria” fair in Vienna. After talking to several exhibitors and game developers, after hours of playing i felt the need to end my visit. One last game caught my eye, at least it seemed to be a game at the first glance. It was the beginning of a really nice half hour of playing and talking to Ulrich, one of two programmers of foreverloops. We decided to stay in contact for a potential workshop.

This workshop took place last week in the Kulturzentrum of “Flucht nach Vorn” in Vienna. We invited young refugees to participate and to spend a few hours of playful beat producing together. Our friend and member Chloé was also part of the fun. The setting reminded me of a LAN party: One big table with laptops, concentrated facial expressions, headphones. Ulrich and i gave a short introduction about the functions and features. It only took us a few minutes to explain the basics. When you try out foreverloops yourself you know why: It is by all means playful and it is of utmost fun to discover the variety of beats and possibilities on your own. After the first hour we already saw quite complex gear systems on each screen. Ulrich showed some tricks during a coffee break for the participants to dig even deeper into the world of drum’n’gears (might this become the newest genre in the pop music industry?).
What particularly fascinates me of foreverloops is that you can build very complex gear systems with totally simple methods. The concept of loops and adding sound sample after sound sample works almost immediately without reading a handbook or playing an annoying tutorial. You can create very short loops but it is also possible to build really big pieces of music that go on for hours and hours before looping for the first time. Ulrich said that even he doesn’t know by far all the possibilities of this gear system. Fascinating!
Another cool feature is that you can produce even visuals in an intuitive way. Just use video or picture samples out of the sample library. Or use your own music and video pieces. A true source of neverending inspiration for hobby and professional musicians. As well as a potential tool to do awesome live art performances… I admit it…i became a real fan boy.

In the end we presented the brand new creations with a projector and quite powerful speakers. It was great to hear and see all those different audiovisual pieces: Some sounded happy, some dark, some fast, some slow…in a feedback round we discovered that people can use foreverloops as a powerful way to express feelings or dreams. And we all agreed that it is just fun to play with gears to make music.

Thank you Ulrich and Marlene from foreverloops! You brought a wonderful new tool into this world. I hope many will discover your work in the future.

You can get foreverloops via Steam:

Or take a look at the youtube channel first:

Have fun!

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foreverloops – making music with gears
was published on 18.12.2017 by Georg Steinfelder. It files under Europe
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Erase all kittens! – spending quality time at the European Youth Award Festival 2017

I am no newbie to the EYA. Four years ago Paul, me and two friends of us won the Award in the category “Go Green” with our App/Game Woody. So i already knew the organising team and over the years we kept contact. I was a juror in 2016 for the first time and it was so much fun that i was looking forward to do it again this year…

In my last post i talked about our network as a small and stable yet dynamic family. I can find many of these qualities in the community of the EYA. Although in a different way. It is large and shrill and posh and everyone seems to be busy being the next big Start-Up CEO. In an interesting workshop, conducted by two wonderful friends from Syria, my group amongst others noticed that we all lack a significant resource: Time. For ourselves.
I want to compare the well organised and tight festival program with a river steadily and strongly flowing. Sometimes you can find people floating next to you at the same velocity. I had many such encounters throughout the last two days. And although it sounds stressful, in fact it has always been energetic and pleasurable. As well interesting and demanding. Personal background stories mixed up with social business models. Example: My dear friend Attila and i just met again after one year and had to catch up in a 10 minute coffee break which ended up having a conversation about how the factor “efficiency” can affect design in a very negative way. When the bell rang we were still standing in line for coffee but almost forgot the river running towards the next workshop.

In the afternoon the winning teams presented their projects to the jury and the festival audience. After last year’s experience i knew in advance that our mission to choose the overall winner would not be easy. The rules for each contestant: exactly 3 minutes of presentation time and 3 minutes of Q&A by the jury. 17 projects and about 2 hours later we were all pretty much filled up with inspiring ideas … and we were exhausted. The contestants were free to spend a nice evening in Graz. For the jury the work just started at that point. At around 11pm and after a we discussed the presentations and projects we finally elected the overall winner.

The winning teams and the moderators of the EYA 2017

“Erase All Kittens” confused with it’s name but also won the hearts of many people in the jury and the audience immediately. As they state on their website: “E.A.K. is a revolutionary, online game that provides kids aged 8-14 with knowledge of both computational thinking and professional coding languages, to effectively prepare them for 21st Century degrees and careers.” Not only it was clearly the most innovative project but it was also the best presentation: I had no struggle at all to understand the concept and their goals within the 3 minutes (almost no questions needed). It amazes me how the team combines the logic process of coding with the ease of playing a fun game about kittens.

Here are the winning teams of the 9 different categories.

Erase All Kittens is the EYA overall winner 2017

In a big evening ceremony on the next day the winning teams were honored by officials and celebrated themselves afterwards. We all know how important partying and dancing is. Sometimes it feels like shaking of the weights of hard work. Especially after so many hours of conceptualizing, creating, designing, coding, calculating, marketing etc. I congratulate and thank the teams and the organisers for making it once more a special experience!

The European Youth Award is a wonderful source of inspiration and gives insights into the young social entrepreneur and start-up scene. At it is nice and helpful to be part of this international network. I talked to several people about our work as an NGO and there might emerge collaborations in the future. What i definitely know though is that i will be happy to spend some quality time at the EYA again next year.

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Erase all kittens! – spending quality time at the European Youth Award Festival 2017
was published on 03.12.2017 by Georg Steinfelder. It files under eastern and central europe, Europe, global, middle east and north africa
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News from #ketascomobile

Our member Margarete Grimus, together with Michael Pollak, a student from UT Vienna, is back in Ghana right now, following up on her previous two workshops at Keta Senior High Technical School. Here’s the links to posts about the two workshops:

This time, Margarete is (more…)

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News from #ketascomobile
was published on 20.06.2014 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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Modern software development workshops at the UEM Maptuo

The ICT4DMZ project is now running quite a while and after three amazing weeks in Maputo we are one big step further to reach our goals. Philipp and I (Paul Spiesberger) tried to bring the students of the Universidade Eduardo Mondlane (UEM) in Maputo on the right track.

In more than eight workshops we gave them the tools and the knowledge to start programming for their projects. At the beginning we tried to find out on which level their skills are and what we can expect. From that point on we knew that we will have to give them a short introduction to modern software development in a team as well. Up to that day the students were exchanging code with Dropbox and they had almost no structure or/and organisation for their teamwork. At that time we were glad that Florian and Anders did great work a few months ago. They helped them with team roles and project documentation a lot. So it was not necessary to cover that important part too. In order to give them an easy tool to handle their code and the organisation of their projects, we introduced them to GIT and Bitbucket. The students were impressed by the GIT workshop and we were happy to see over the next days that some of them were porting their “Dropbox projects” to their new GIT repositories. Working with Bitbucket-Issues was not that successful at the beginning, but we are sure that this will change over time. From that point on we were ready for programming and we split up the group by the two projects:

Complaint Center

The goal of this project is to create a website which can handle complaints about a company or a product. It should gather information or feedback and help to improve their services. Philipp started with a short tutorial about the PlayFramework and helped to set everything up. After that he assisted with his expertise as much as he could.

Philipp with students


The other group is working on an Android app for students to find POI like lecture rooms, Wifi hotspots or public power plugs at the UEM campus. I started to teach them the basics of Android programming and helped them to set up the project. Since Java programming and developing for Android are quite different, it took a little bit longer to write the first line of code. I tried to explain step by step the important parts and assisted as much as I could.

Paul with students

In total we worked about 27 hours in three weeks with the students. We had some troubles finding the right time slots for all students, since they had different time schedules during their weeks. Especially at the beginning we did some workshops twice, so no one missed the introductions to the technologies. After that, not all students attended to our workshops all the time, but we were never alone.

From now on, we will assist via Skype and e-mail remotely from Austria. We have a good feeling for the outgoing of the projects and hopefully the students keep engaged in the next months as they were during our workshops.

Group picture UEM

During our stay we also helped the UEM to use Moodle for a first test run. We hope that in the future this modern way of IT supported teaching will be expanded to other lectures and faculties to strengthen the teaching abilities at the UEM.

In addition Philipp and I were working hard on our master thesis. Philipp is doing research on big data for emerging countries and for that he conducted some expert interviews. I am interested in user interface design for mobile devices in emerging countries like Mozambique. So I did a survey with students to find out their mobile phone usage and habits.

Of course we also found time to travel and to take a look at this beautiful country. When you talk to people in Mozambique, experience the beautiful landscape and take the time to look behind the curtain, then you get the feeling that this country is moving fast forward. The question is in which direction. The currently discovered massive resources (minerals, oil, gas) can have a positive or a negative impact to the society. There is also a new party growing really fast and it is gaining more and more influence. In the last few months the country was almost slipping into a new civil war. But one week before we arrived, they managed to find a compromise and elections are going to happen in the future. But I think that despite the fact of great poverty, corruption and the lack of education, Mozambique has the ability to find the way to a great and rich future.

3 women

Last but not least I would like to say thank you to Emilio Mosse and Andrei Shindyapin. We are lucky to have this partner and friends in Maputo, who are willing to share their valuable time and love with us. Also a big thank you to the students for their great effort and time!

Philipp and I are excited to continue the work and we are looking forward to meeting our friends in Maputo again.

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Modern software development workshops at the UEM Maptuo
was published on 03.03.2014 by Paul Spiesberger. It files under sub saharan africa
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Keta Project Continued – Second Workshop in Ghana

As proposed after the successful workshop at KETASCO last year (see a follow up workshop on the topic “Learning and Teaching with Digital Technology had taken place in September 2013 in Keta. The school is still growing and hosts now about 2.800 students, another 15 classes in a new block open next year.

The second workshop focused on development of content for mobile learning with teachers and students and was scheduled for three weeks from 9th to 28th September 2013. The aim was to offer a chance for students to access learning material on their own mobile phones whenever they need it and to produce content particular to local demands:

Schedule: two weeks teacher training and a third week teamwork of teachers and students. Topics of the workshop:

  • Development of locally relevant digitized content and upload to mobile phones. Test and peer-review
  • Use of a Dropbox for feedback and reviews. (possibilities. benefits and challenges)
  • Creation of a personal digital portfolio.
  • Didactical methods: Evaluation of digital learning material e.g. Open Content, OER.
  • Guidelines for Best practice: Mobile phones for learning’.

Initially 20 teachers registered; finally 14 fulfilled the requirements for a certificate. During the third week 13 students participated. For testing 20 mobile phones (Nokia E5-00 smartphone with MicroSDHC 2GB inbox) and 5 eReader (TrekSTor E-Book Reader Pyrus mini, 4,3” Digital Ink) were brought from Europe, together with an additional WLAN router to
support mobile Internet access. Noah, an ICT student of KETASCO assisted in technical and organizational aspects, his
support was highly appreciated and contributed to the success of the workshop.

Students were introduced by teachers in creating a digital portfolio and use of a drop-box. Together they created courses for specific subjects and topics:

  • Social Studies: Adolescence Pregnancy
  • Social Studies: Adolesence Chastity
  • Physics: Projectiles
  • Physics: Atom Physics, Basics
  • English Language: Nouns
  • ICT: Classification of Computer Hardware
  • Business Studies: Law of agency
  • Graphics and Art: Elements of Design
  • Chemistry: Inter Atomic Bonds
  • Economics: Demand
  • Mathematics: SET Theory

The courses were presented from a student accompanied by teacher to the auditorium. Finally four external examiners
(teachers from other SHSS) approved the success of the workshop and the quality of the developed material. They gave feedback to the participants in the three categories:

  • Teachers’ Portfolios (evaluation of reports, structure, achieved learning outcomes, keywords, take home statements, summary
  • Content of developed Courseunits (micro-content) developed by teachers and students units (small groups, 1-2 teachers+ 1-2 students). Assessment of course-structure, -design, suitable for small screens, visualization/images. Output as epub and pdf.
  • Guidelines for good practice, posters. The assessment checked on completedness of relevant facts and if the take in account needs of both parts (teachers and students) to gain better acceptance

Challenges were seen in the frequent power outages, which impair the work in the computerlab. Noah is also the tutor of a team working on robotics. They prepare to participate in a comettion on robotics.


The second workshop led to a better understanding of the issue of mobile devices for learning than theoretical statements A similar acceptance was found in the interview with the headmaster. Teamwork with students offered new insights as well for teachers as for students and can be recognized as a basis for further developments in
teaching and learning. Teachers were encouraged to pass their learned skills on to students and colleagues afterwards.

In the opening ceremony the headmaster reported to all students and teachers about the new trends coming up in education. He addressed that this could help to become critical thinkers, referred to new didactical methods and benefits by integrating mobile devices in learning and teaching. He proposed a reform of the guidelines for the use of mobile devices at school. 14 teachers were handed over their certificates of successful completion of the workshops. Finally 4 laptops from Austrian donors were handed to the school to benefit students and teachers in the new built library.

We hope that the expertise gained in the workshops will affect further developments.

Publications of the project in international journals:

Grimus, M., Ebner, M., Holzinger, A. 2013a. Mobile Learning as a chance to enhance education in developing
countries – in the example of Ghana. In: mLearn 2012 Conference Proceedings. Specht, M., Sharples, M.,
Multisittla, J. (Ed.), Helsinki, Finland, p. 340-345, ISSN 1613-073, Volume 955,

Grimus, M. and Ebner, M. 2013b. M-Learning in Sub Saharan Africa Context- What is it about. In . Jan
Herrington et al. (Eds.), Proceedings of World Conference on Educational Multimedia, Hypermedia and
Telecommunications 2013 (pp. 2028-2033). Chesapeake, VA: AACE. Retrieved 28.10. 2013 from


The support to the Workshops with mobile devices (mobile phones and laptops) and the provided prices have contributed a lot to the success of the project. This is why I would like to thank Mr. Tom Trauner for assembling of the phones and the donation of lot of material. My thanks address also the Austrian Computer Society which supported the project with pen drives, T-shirts and caps. Many thanks to the anonymous donators who supported the project with laptops via mediation of Dr. Baumer.

Particularly I would want to thank my mentor, Univ. Prof. Dr. Martin Ebner of the University of Technology Graz, who helps me any time with advice and suggestions; his contributions benefit a lot to the success of the project.

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Keta Project Continued – Second Workshop in Ghana
was published on 20.11.2013 by Florian Sturm. It files under sub saharan africa
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eTG workshop on The Singapore Experience – Aftermath

Last Wednesday the World Bank eDevelopment Thematic Group held a workshop on “The Singapore Experience” – how the small country Singapore achieved the transformation to become economically that successful and one of the countries with the most government services accessible by mobile phone or internet.

The notes from the different speakers can be accessed under the following links:

The reason for the whole eTransformation was the desire to attract foreign investment on the one hand, and the will to foster public construction to provide public housing for the citizens. This led to improvements in regulations and the attempt in many sectors to hide the complexity of the government bureaucracy away from the individuals and companies, providing the services of many agencies on an online platform.

The speakers came mostly from the private sector, as Singapore managed its transformation mostly by forming public-private partnerships, with companies providing government services. These companies have gained a lot of experience now, and also consult other nations all over the world on their strategy to implement eServices.

One key aspect of Singapore’s eTransformation was the presence of a long term vision concerning ICT which was in place for 20 years already. The vision was created with changes in technology and administration processes in mind – so these changes didn’t render the vision useless, but were rather absorbed by it.

Another substantial point in Singapore’s eTransformation process was the persistent work with all stakeholders to have everybody on the “same page” of the process. The different agencies involved in the provided services were trained to implement ICT and to share data digitally.

All in all the event gave a complete and interesting insight into the development of the ICT strategy of Singapore and showcased a role model for other nations aiming to focus on the provision of eServices to their citizens. Also it was encouraging to hear about Singapore’s interests in helping and supporting other nations.

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eTG workshop on The Singapore Experience – Aftermath
was published on 08.10.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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eTG workshop on The Singapore Experience – Part 2

Notes from the World Bank eDevelopment Thematic Group workshop on “The Singapore Experience on 30 September in Washington DC.


Participants of the workshopSharing on Government Transformation by Crimsonlogic Pte Ltd

Topic: eGovernance to yield greater socio-economic impact

Speaker: Mr. TAN Sian Lip, Vice President

Public private partnership company

  • built by Singapore government
  • run as a private company
  • providing government services

Singapore Trade Facilitation Journey

On the last 20 years

  • Almost everybody in the trade-sector changed their technology
  • Administrative roles changed in the last 20 years
  • The public didn’t experience any change


  • Harmonizing trade admission procedures for companies evolved
  • “TradeNet -World’s First Nationwide Electronic Data Interchange System”
  • Minimizing processing time for admission to 1 minute
  • there exist 2 business case studies, it has been well documented
  • many international partnerships, facilitating trade on ports worldwide

Singapore eJudiciary


  • Platform for processing legal information
  • Keeping data digital
  • Less hardcopies
  • Higher clearance rate
  • Cases take shorter time
  • Transparency through online availability of cases
  • good rating in international comparison

Lessons learnt – Principles of eGovernment

  • The application of IT to transform the way governments work, to make them friendlier and more effective
  • It is not (just) a large portfolio of technology projects
  • It is a large ongoing program of activities involving public administrators and technologists in rethinking how government & the public can work together, and then applying technology to effect the changes

Infrastructure: e-things change all the time, there is always something better

  • you should plan carefully so that changes don’t destroy your system, but can be absorbed


  • There are never enough resources to design & build all possible eServices

It’s important to build the eServices which have the biggest impact on citizens and business

Partnerships between governments and private companies in developing and implementing services on a risk-and investment-sharing basis

Q & A:

Is there a legalframework for exchangig data online?

  • electronic transactions act – very broad
  • Computer misuse act
  • In Singapore PKI is not so common
  • Electronic banking has existed for years and transactions not signed with PKI

Participants of the workshopIs there competition for IDA in Singapore?

  • yes, there is international competition, other companies are bidding for contracts too, but so far no success

Who selects what applications have the highest impact on citizens and businesses?

  • The specific agencies decide what the governmental agenda should be
  • Then they have to fight for the budget

Common components for eServices?

  • Governance is primary
  • Architecture is handmade into it
  • Basic network, basic logging mechanism, web service gateways, portal infrastructure should be common


Sharing on Government Transformation by NCS Pte Ltd

Topic: Effective Development – Why is there a need for Public Services Infrastructure (PSi)

Speaker: Mr. NG Beng Lim, General Manager

Company: NCS – national computer system

  • providing government services

Key concerns in Singapore:

  • economic growth
  • education
  • utilization of resources
  • making society a better place
  • how to use IT to promote these issues?

Areas to address:

  • governance, administration
  • services for citizens
  • integrating IT into society
  • better management of resources
  • developing economy based on IT – in the long term

Every country has to have a clear masterplan what to do with IT

  • But how to come from the masterplan to an implementation and successful rollout?

Transformation of IT during the 80s and 90s to today

  • Nowadays the prerequisites for successful eServices rollout are ideal
  • In early 2000 – government in Singapore started Public Services Infrastructure
  • Interface for people to interact with the government
  • open infrastructure to more providers – including the private sector

Public Services Infrastructure Components:

  • Government Network
  • Common Data Centre
  • Application Infrastructure
  • Common Desktop Services


  • Single sign on
  • SMS, email gateway
  • personalisation
  • service delivery framwork
  • ePayment
  • Orchestration
  • multilingual


  • PSi was started 10 years ago
  • Today: SHINE (Service Wide Hosting Environment) by NCS
  • Billing model: Subscription-based
  • Evens out peak CPU utilisation
  • SHINE: Hosting, services and storing on demand

NCS – in the mean time a lot of experience in eGovernment & National ICT Planning

Participants of the workshopQ & A:

Does the government have a centralised architecture?

  • Yes, in Singapore the government came up with a centralized infrastructure

What about security standards?

  • The IT infrastructure has to come with an own security framework already

Key objecticves in terms of consilidating the data?

  • Make people use the system
  • “Selling” tools to the ministries

Many agencies – one government. Government has to have the oversight, but agencies have to have the freedom to act on themselves.

Is there a trend for re-centralization?

  • It’s technologically possible
  • Is it possible to monitor all local spots where services are running?

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eTG workshop on The Singapore Experience – Part 2
was published on 30.09.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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eTG workshop on The Singapore Experience – Part 1

Notes from the World Bank eDevelopment Thematic Group workshop on “The Singapore Experience on 30 September in Washington DC.


Workshop participantsWelcome Remarks by Mr. Deepak Bhatia, Lead ICT Policy Specialist, GICT and Ms. Angela PNG, Deputy Director of International Organisation, International Enterprise Singapore

Knowledge sharing event – how Singapore became a leader in eGovernment

Singapore ranked first in eGovernment ranking in four consecutive years, global competitiveness index: 3rd

One factor for that – policy to utilize ICTs in national development

A lot of problems to overcome – e.g. technophobia

Today: ICT masterplan, holistic


Opening Remarks by Mr. Sun Vithespongse, Southeast Asia Executive Director and Mr. Mohsen Khalil, Director, Global ICT Department (TBC)


  • small country with no resources
  • therefore it has to be developed in ICTs to become efficient

World Bank group is the biggest sponsor in eGovernment – and has experiences large successes

World Bank should keep on the work, despite the financial crisis

Development in the industry

  • a lot of innovation is happening in the developing world
  • south-to-north and south-to-south developments

What can ICTs be useful for?

  • Powerful transformation forces turning around the way we do business

The integral structure of of governement and important private sectors and their cooperation is very important

Harnessing the power of ICTs is a government and behavioural issue – rather than a technological issue


Sharing on Government Transformation by IDA International

Topic: Singapore’s ICT Journey – The Past 30 years and the Next 5 years.

Speaker: Mr. YEONG Wee Tan, Deputy Director

ICT sector in Singapore

  • 40 bn US$
  • 140 000 IT professionals

Six national ICT plans

  • Computerisation
  • Communication
  • Connectivity
  • Convergence
  • Connectedness
  • Creation

It’s necessary to start a dialog on learned lessons – between Singapore and the other nations

Workshop participantsA lot of working with foreign agencies

IDA International – Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore

  • partnering with other governments, sharing lessons of Singapore and advising them
  • not a vendor
  • living their lessons
  • helping to integrate ICTs

Sharing lessons on different levels

  • Infrastructure
  • Human capacity – The countries need to have sustainable human capital to carry on with their policies
  • Industry and Government
  • Governance – which legal framework is necessary
  • Outcomes – What are the aims?

Within 15 minutes you can register a Singaporian company around the world

GrBiz – Government to Business open platform

We want to get people used to make everything “e”

  • There are 200 government services available on a handheld in Singapore
  • Also as a tourist you get all these services available
  • A lot of learning devices for schools – “Future schools in Singapore” – to be on the forefront of development
  • Also health care projects

Government must evolve to be an open ecosystem

Together with agencies like the World Bank we can teach also other countries how to integrate ICTs in their services and transform their operations

eTransformation can create a better world through ICT

Q & A:

Question about public trust – everything is digital now, do people trust in the system?

  • Everybody has one number – took quite a while to harmonize that
  • In the beginning of the journey there were problems, but in the mean time people have accepted it
  • There is a lot of public consultation

Infrastructure is important but education too – how to talk to ministries trying to prioritize?

Cross agency information sharing?

  • There always political trouble  – but the important point is communicate, communicate, communicate the overall goal to everbody
  • It’s important to bring the stakeholders together and convince them

What motivates Singapore for international coperation? Typical cooperation between the agency and another country?

  • One strategic plan in the Singapore ICT plan is internationalization
  • It’s also an export industry, not everything for free – but not a typical consultor, we are there to help people get on the IT journey
  • It’s important for us to give back to the world
  • We act like a trusted adviser to the government

Do you have an administrative reform plans for the country and how is it linked to the ICT plan?

  • Definitely, everything is balanced between administrative reforms, governments processes, … to have everybody on the same page, it’s still ongoing


It’s very encouraging to see this international exchange, Singapore is currently working on a P2P portal for government transformation

Sometimes you need to break established ways of work and act outside the framework


Workshop participantsSharing on Government Transformation by novaCITYNETS Pte Ltd

Topic: e-Transformation to a First World City

Speaker: Ms. Joyce WONG, EVP

Singapore in the 1960 had big problems – a developing country

  • GDP per capita: 427$

Several measures to overcome the situation

  • Public housing
  • Attracting foreign investment – to create jobs

Making Singapore a good place for investment

  • Infrastructure improvement – water, electricity, roads, …
  • Well thought our master plan
  • Constant reform
  • Concept plan = blueprint
  • Master plan = vision
  • Construction = concrete measures
  • Twenty years plan

A lot of construction activities

Many issues faced when dealing with construction permits from different agencies

Introduction of COREnet

  • streamline and reengineer the processes in the construction industry
  • e-submission system launched in 2001
  • business re-engineering, project design, training, industry promotion, …
  • Interface for businesses to interact with the government
  • Variety of agencies are hidden behind the online portal – single point of access
  • big success story, companies make use of it, big increase in efficiency

In 2009

  • 16 participating agencies
  • 700 application forms (2001) to 231
  • 30% improvement in turnaround time

Information on eTransformation in Sri Lanka

  • All building blocks for a strong eGovernment solution were not in place – when NCS came to rescue
  • Trying to replicate the experience of Singapore – but adapt it to the situation in Sri Lanka

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eTG workshop on The Singapore Experience – Part 1
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