World Bank Day @ mHealth Summit – Opening session

Notes from the eDevelopment Thematic Group event World Bank Day @ mHealth Summit – mHealth from policy to implementation.


Part 1 : Global Policy Dialogue on mHealth

Welcome & Site introductions

    Deepak Bhatia, Lead e-Government specialist, Global ICT, World Bank
    Oleg Petrov, eDevelopment TG coordinator, Global ICT, World Bank
    David Aylward, Executive Director of the mHealth Alliance

    mHealth as catalyst for measurable health impacts

    Especially World Bank mHealth projects are being looked at

    There are a lot of opportunities for synergies

    How can we work together more effective to deliver more efficient health care?

    It’s extremely exciting, there’s a lot to be done – we have an important mission

    Introduction of country offices – a lot of participants and discussions there


    Session 1: Opening & Keynote

    • Introduction

    Yaw Ansu, Human Development Director, Africa Region, World Bank

    Africa is facing great challenges

    mHealth and eHealth in general has great potential for the continent to help

    We are working closely with a lot of partners in several projects


    Philippe Dongier, Sector Manager, Global ICT, World Bank

    It’s not just about technology but also about other issues – about which we will discuss today as well

    We didn’t see the boom in mobile phones coming, now we have a tremendous opportunity to reach people and do things differently – in many fields

    The future of the internet is mobile or wireless – as well in the health sector

    Challenges are about regulations – telecom operators and about the business model

    What’s the role of developers, public sector, private sector, …

    Where will the innovation come from? Actually from all the sectors


    • Opening Remarks

    Rakesh Nangia, Operations Director, Human Development Network, World Bank

    There will be challenges and innovations – we will only be limited by our creative thinking, not by technology

    There are shocking statistics on health in developing countries

    Mobile technology has already achieved quite some things – e.g. empowering women in Bangladesh

    “Leapfrogging” is discussed often – maybe too often

    We need to to think of how technology can bring healthcare to the people when the physical proximity is hard to overcome

    Example: Uganda

    • quiz to increase knowledge about HIV/AIDS
    • increased testing of HIV of 40%

    Example: South Africa

    • only 5% of people get tested for HIV
    • government sent out phone numbers of places where people can be tested

    Example: Rwanda

    • SMS to remind people to take their pills

    Lots of interesting uses

    Similarly – health workers are trained to look at epidemics

    mHealth is an innovative way to get health care closer to the people

    But it’s not about technology, as Phillipe already said


    Obiageli Katryn Ezekwesili, Regional Vice-President, Africa Region, World Bank

    In many ways we haven’t pushed the frontiers of technology yet

    We have to realize the potentials of ICTs, we can’t just let that pass by us

    We do well with tackling poverty if we focus of the asset of the poor

    • they assume the ownership of a mobile as one of the biggest thing in their life
    • we have to focus on that

    Innovation can push us to look at solutions – which is reflected in this kind of summit the World Bank is hosting

    Mobile phones are omnipresent in Africa – the mobile revolution, an important progress

    seven years ago Nigeria had just about 250 000 fixed line phones

    • which brought with itself various forms of corruption
    • the regulations which came improved the whole situation
    • the World Bank was involved in that, which is a great benefit
    • now: 250 million mobile phones

    Knowledge is power – telephones in Africa are not just a tool for communications

    • it’s a social, political, knowledge tool
    • we have the opportunity to use it a health delivery tool as well

    Lack of access to health infrastructure prevent us from reaching our goals

    ICTs presents us a lot of opportunities

    The patient the primary focus, the results must focus on the patient

    With only seven years left to the MDGs we need to be really bold and embrace new ways of getting things done – tradition can sometimes kill, we need to rethink our ways

    It’s not just politics which is the answer to all problems, there’s also technology which can achieve things


    • Keynote Address

    Dr Agnes Binagwaho, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health (via Videoconference from Kigali)

    When we in Rwanda look at the agenda we are happy, because it focuses on the use of health in the development countries and countries facing the greatest health problems

    We need to combine health with effective communication

    Communication technologies have become effective tools to fight diseases

    Technology is making health care more possible and more precise

    Helahtcare is being turned into a ICT industry

    Rwanda has adopted the use of technology in all sectors – health included

    • technology in hospitals
    • building manpower by education
    • adopting national and international standards

    Use of mobile phone is dependent on other indicators

    • coverage 98%
    • penetration 21%
    • we try to increase the penetration

    TRACNet – mobile phone & internet based tool which we use

    • significantly improved the way AIDS is treated in Rwanda
    • people are well monitored

    Also more application – mobile based – are being developed

    Rwanda: 45 000 community health workers all around the country, several projects to realize their potential – AIDS and maternal health

    Trying to foster exchange between grass roots initiatives and hospitals

    mHealth is an indispensable tool to deliver helathcare today and a key priority in Rwanda

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    World Bank Day @ mHealth Summit – Opening session
    was published on 28.10.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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    Agenda of World Bank Day @ mHealth Summit

    As announced, on 28 October the eDevelopment Thematic Group of the World Bank is organizing the “World Bank Day @ mHealth Summit“, where speakers from various sectors share their views on mHealth and sample projects are presented. The event was planned in the context of the mHealth Summit, but focuses more on the situation in developing countries.

    If you want to watch the event online – follow the link to the live webcast registration.

    If you want to get updates, ask questions or post comments, please follow the eDevelopment group on Twitter and use the hashtag #mhealth09 for the World Bank day, and the hastag #mHS09 for the general summit.


    AGENDA (from the Wold Bank Day event page)

    • 8:15am – 9:00am: Registration and Breakfast

    Part 1 : Global Policy Dialogue on mHealth

    • 9:00am – 9:15am: Welcome & Site introductions

    Deepak Bhatia, Lead e-Government specialist, Global ICT, World Bank
    Oleg Petrov, eDevelopment TG coordinator, Global ICT, World Bank
    David Aylward, Executive Director of the mHealth Alliance

    Session 1: Opening & Keynote

    Co-Chairs: Eva Jarawan, Sector Manager, Africa Health Department, World Bank & Philippe Dongier, Sector Manager, Global ICT, World Bank

    • 9:15am – 9:25am: Introduction
    • 9:25am – 9:40am: Opening Remarks

    Obiageli Katryn Ezekwesili, Regional Vice-President, Africa Region, World Bank
    Rakesh Nangia, Operations Director, Human Development Network, World Bank

    • 9:40am – 9:55am: Keynote Address

    Hon. Dr. Richard Sezibera, Minister of Health, Rwanda (via videoconference from Kigali)

    Session 2: Global Overview, Country Cases and Perspectives

    According to a recent UNF-Vodafone Foundation study, the use of mHealth is being implemented in several developing countries with using a number of applications such as data collection and analysis; education and awareness; and monitoring and surveillance. The panelists in this session will provide an overview of the mHealth movement and describe actual project implementations in the field followed by an interactive comment and Q&A video conference session from several country representatives.

    • 09:55am – 11:20am: Panel Discussion

    Chair: Deepak Bhatia, Lead eGovernment Specialist, Global ICT, World Bank

    – Global Overview: Mitul Shah, Senior Director, the UN Foundation
    – Mexico Case: Rodrigo Saucedo, mHealth Lead Researcher, Carso Institute
    – Kenya Case: Yusuf Ibrahim, Training and Support Manager, DataDyne and Kenyan Ministry of Health
    – Cambodia/Mekong Region Case: Romdoul Kim, Director of Government Affairs, Mekong Region, InSTEDD iLab (via VC from Phnom Penh) and Eric Rassmussen, CEO, InSTEDD

    Questions & Remarks by Participating countries: Armenia, Russia, Moldova, Ghana, Rwanda, Tanzania, and Kenya

    • 11:20am – 11:35 am: Coffee Break

    Session 3: Policy Perspectives on Using Mobile Technology for Better Health Outcomes

    A key step in the process of mainstreaming and scaling-up mHealth is a sound eHealth and mHealth policy at the country level. The panelists in this session will present their views on developing a successful e/mHealth policy and provide examples of best practice and learning from around world.

    • 11:35am – 12:15pm: Panel Discussion

    Chair: Elizabeth J. Ashbourne, Lead, Global Health Information Forums, World Bank/Health Metrics Network

    – Najeeb Al-Shorbaji, Director for eHealth, World Health Organization (via video conference from Geneva)
    – Alison Bloch, m-Health advisor, GSMA
    – Karl Brown, Assistant Director for Applied Technology, Rockefeller Foundation

    • 12:15pm – 12:45 pm: Q & A session
    • 12:45pm – 1:45am: Lunch

    Part 2: Scaling-up Mobile Technology Innovations in Health Sector Projects

    Session 4: Scaling Up Mobile Innovations in World Bank Health Sector Projects

    This session will provide an overview of the potential contributions of ICT to health services in the countries that are facing greatest health problems, and how mHealth (and eHealth in general) can provide a new set of tools for Africa and other developing countries to tackle the long-standing health challenges. The session will discuss how ICT can help the Bank’s health operations to achieve their goals more efficiently and effectively as well as the key constraints. The session will also brainstorm how Bank can play a more active role in exploring and using ICT and the ways of scaling up ICT applications in World Bank health projects.

    • 1:45pm – 2:30 pm: Panel Discussion

    Chair: Eva Jarawan, Sector Manager, Africa Health Department, World Bank
    Presentation by Feng Zhao, eHealth Coordinator, Africa Health Department, World Bank

    Agnes Soucat, Advisor, Africa Health Department, World Bank
    Deepak Bhatia, Lead eGovernment Specialist, Global ICT Dept, World Bank
    Souheil Marine, Head of ICT Application and Cybersecurity, International Telecommunication Union (via videoconference from Geneva)
    Najeeb Al-Shorbaji, Director for eHealth, World Health Organization (via video conference from Geneva)

    • 2:30 pm – 2:50 pm: Q & A session
    • 2:50pm – 3:00 pm: Coffee Break

    Session 5: Showcasing mHealth Applications

    This session will spotlight several mHealth applications that are being piloted and implemented. The panelists will provide demonstrations of their respective applications, provide an overview of why the applications were created and the direct impact in l countries where the technology has been introduced.

    • 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm: Panel Discussion

    Co-Chairs: Armin Fidler, Advisor, Health, Nutrition and Population, World Bank, Deepak Bhatia Lead eGovernment Specialist, Global ICT, World Bank

    Paul Meyer (TBC), Voxiva
    Eric Rasmussen, CEO, INSTEDD
    Josh Nesbit, Executive Director, Frontline SMS
    Erica Kochi, Co-Lead Innovation Group UNICEF
    Hajo van Beijma, co-Founder of Text to Change

    Commentator: Arleen Cannata Seed, Senior e-Government Specialist, CITPO, World Bank

    • 4:00pm – 4:15 pm: Q & A session

    Session 6: Operationalizing mHealth: How do we translate mHealth applications into measurable health outcomes

    Beyond the widespread global usage of mHealth applications, there remains a gap due to the lack of data and long-term impact assessments on health outcomes to validate the effectiveness of mHealth. Evaluation frameworks and studies are currently in process to fill this gap and this will be the subject of discussion between the panelists in this session along with the importance of monitoring and evaluation frameworks for this nascent sector.

    • 4:15pm – 5:00 pm: Panel Discussion

    Chairs: Armin Fidler, Advisor, Health, Nutrition and Population and Claire Thwaites, UN Foundation

    Rachel Glennerster, MIT Poverty Labs
    Julie Smith, Director of Public-Private Partnerships, CDC Foundation
    Andrew Stern, Partner, Dalberg Global Advisors
    Patty Mechael, mHealth and Telemedicine Advisor for the Earth Institute

    • 5:00 pm – 5:15 pm: Q & A session
    • 5:15 pm – 5:30pm: Closing Remarks

    Eva Jarawan, Sector Manager, Africa Health Department, Armin Fidler, Advisor, Health, Nutrition and Population, World Bank, Deepak Bhatia, Lead eGovernment Specialist, Global ICT, World Bank, Claire Thwaites, UN Foundation

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    Agenda of World Bank Day @ mHealth Summit
    was published on 21.10.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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    m-Health: From Policy to Implementation

    On Wednesday, 28 October, an exciting event by the World Bank eDevelopment Thematic Group is taking place. Its title is “m-Health: From Policy to Implementation” or “World Bank Day @ mHealth summit” and it is held in conjunction with the mHealth Summit which takes place in Washington on the following two days. It is supposed to be a forum for exchange on mobile health topics and experiences, speakers from the public sectors will present the policy side, whereas successful implementations in projects such as FrontlineSMS or Text To Change will be showcased.

    The event will take place in Washington again, but also be broadcasted over the web.

    What: m-Health: From Policy to Implementation – World Bank Day @ mHealth summit

    Where: Washington DC, also available via webcast

    When: 28 October, 9:00 Washington time will of course cover the event on Twitter and here on the blog.

    From the eDevelopment Thematic Group “m-Health: From Policy to Implementation” page:

    Jointly sponsored by World Bank Group (HDNHE, AFTHE, GICT, IFC) and UN Foundation/mHealth Alliance, in collaboration with FNIH, NIH and others, the World Bank Day @ mHealth Summit will raise awareness of the possibilities for mobile-enabled innovations for improving health care and health care outcomes in developing countries and seeks to:

    • Contribute to putting m-health on the map of the mainstream public health agenda.
    • Explore options as to how to translate mHealth applications into measurable health outcomes.
    • Provide concrete examples of experience at the country level – what questions to ask, what to look for, what tools are available, and what are the policy implications for implementation.
    • Establish a basis for future collaboration and continued dialogue on mHealth.

    This unique one-day workshop will bring together lessons, innovations, and perspectives from the practitioners and policy makers. The workshop will discuss specific case studies and country perspectives on mHealth and address scaling up mobile innovations in World Bank Health Sector Projects. World Bank @ mHealth Day is integral part of the mHealth Summit focusing on Mobile Technologies as a platform for health research and health care delivery. The mHealth Summit is an unprecedented event that will bring together researchers, policy-makers, collaborators and visionaries from around the world to exchange ideas, novel approaches, research and findings surrounding mHealth issues both in the United States and in developing countries.

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    m-Health: From Policy to Implementation
    was published on 15.10.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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    eDevelopment workshop on mobile innovation – Aftermath

    Yesterday, 16 September, the workshop Mobile Innovations for Social and Economic Transformation: From Pilots to Scaled-up Implementation, initiated by the eDevelopment Thematic Group (eTG) of the World Bank took place.

    It was already the 7th workshop we covered on our blog, Twitter and social media since we started our partnership with eTG, and the topic was especially interesting for us – considering the unique role of mobile phones in developing countries nowadays.

    The workshop was split in six parts, each having as leitmotif a certain sector where mobile services are used.

    There are some photos which Oleg Petrov took during the event on the Flickr account.

    The speakers came from various sectors – the World Bank, private and public sector, the academia and practicioners in the field.

    Many of them claimed what I also already heard in several other conferences – the technology is there, now we have to focus on applications and business models. Although several successful projects were presented, there were general complaints that often such projects don’t bypass the “pilot” stage and don’t achieve sustainability. The topic of scaling projects to reach more audience and higher impact was also mentioned several times. More evaluation on impact and sharing information on failures of projects was identified as two ways to overcome this problem. Also the concept of private-public partnerships and searching strong, committed partners for implementing mobile solutions was put forward once more.

    More detailed information can be found in the blog posts linked above and on Twitter. Under the hashtag #mobile09 the lively online discussion surrounding the event can be followed – several contributors gave this event quite a drive. The comments there had a more critical viewpoint on mobile phones as the big solution for all problems.

    What was interesting for me personally was that obviously there is no real large scale project out there which is profitable so far. M-Pesa is the only one which scratches the border but also has trouble creating revenue. Impressive non-profit examples where projects which used mobile phones for delivering services to the poor and as enhancements in education.

    So all in all the event gave a feeling that there is potential for more to come in the mobile sector and several great examples were given – but the “killer application” is obviously still to come, or maybe there’s even no need for it, because it’s so easy to set up an own, localized application.

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    eDevelopment workshop on mobile innovation – Aftermath
    was published on 18.09.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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    eDevelopment workshop on mobile innovation – Session 6

    Notes from the World Bank eDevelopment Thematic Group workshop on “Mobile Innovations for Social and Economic Transformation – From Pilots to Scaled-up Implementation on 16 September in Washington DC.


    Session 6: Mobile Innovations in Governance


    Introduction: Alfredo Gonzalez, WBI

    Mobile technology has created at elections in various countries to raise voice and awareness

    Fighting corruption is a big issue for ICTs


    Mobile Phones for Good Governance – Scaling Up Issues

    Ed Campos

    Philippines is the SMS capital of the world – the reason is that technology came and broke the landline monopoly and everything changed

    Mobile phones give the possibility to tap the voices of people you probably wouldn’t have heard

    Problem with governance is the service delivery – especially in the regions locally

    • mobile telephony and ICTs can help a lot here
    • example in the Philippines where mobile phones were used for ensuring transparency in the education system

    Mobile technology is a mechanism to bridge the demand-supply side very fast


    Johan Hellstrom, ICT Specialist Stockholm University

    East Africa as cast study

    What is good governance?

    • impossible to define – depends on the context
    • relationships between three actors: state, market and civil society
    • communication between these actors is really the key point

    Why mobile phones?

    • huge potentials
    • penetration rates, access, reach
    • easy to use, interaction
    • costs, efficiency
    • no other option?


    • not mGovernment, it’s good governance with mobile technology
    • interaction, reaction, action
    • bottom up participation
    • empowerment

    East Africa: mostly pilots – many examples

    • Much usage which was not planned
    • Crowdsourcing

    Recent example:

    • big incident
    • hard to get information – except on Twitter
    • crowdsourcing information with the help of Ushahidi


    • why are there so many pilots and yet so few that have been scaled-up?
    • why do many projects start from scratch instead of building on existing solutions?
    • why are there many subscribers but yet so few users of existing applications?


    • infrastructure
    • affordability – who pays for good governance services?
    • content – who is creating the content?
    • surrounding supporting system
    • enabling environment
    • documentation – on the pilots, success, failure, more collaboration

    East Africa:

    • markets deregulated but operators still too powerful

    Success factors for scaling:

    • design phase: end-user driven, use existing patterns
    • implementation phase: more research on business models, proper marketing to build a critical mass


    • design for scale
    • don’t be afraid of failures, don’t force success – but document
    • service delivery instead of projects approach
    • but: scale is not success, usage is not impact

    Q & A:

    best practices to design for scale?

    • designing by knowing that there is something beyond the pilot and what you want to achieve

    governments are also afraid of the powers of new technologies


    Boris Weber, WBI

    Using Frontline SMSat WBI

    • east and fast to use
    • great communication tool
    • but relying on one network admin, maybe this can change in the future

    Citizen feedback to service providers:

    • Long route – involving governments representatives and a lot of bureaucracy
    • Short route – citizens can give direct feedback

    Why are we still doing citizen report cards same as 30 years ago?

    • automated process could make process quicker
    • improve performance
    • give providers the possibility to focus on evaluation and feedback

    Idea – having feedback on a public service

    • various channels
    • government civil society work with data

    Live sample of feedback mechanism / rating via SMS

    Mobile phone – ICT tool with the lowest gender gap, reaches also out to illiterates, …

    • everybody can give feedback

    Next step: participatory budgeting

    • priority areas to spend money one
    • specific projects make it too complex – but still citizens can be kept informed
    • increasing number of participation

    Participating citizens in the decision process has the potential to change a lot


    Katrin Verclas, Co-Founder and Editor, MobileActive.Org download presentation

    mLearning is where mHealth was 3 years ago and mHealth is where mFinance was 3 years ago – so what is mGovernance?

    there’s very little happening, save a few areas e.g. elections

    mobile phone is the most ubiquotious compared to ant other media

    • but a lot of hype is happening in this field
    • danger of people being disappointed
    • one has to be careful about what mobile technology can deliver and what it can not

    • bringing people together using mobiles for social change
    • repository of projects

    Use of mobiles interesting in this session

    • accountability & transparency
    • media reporting
    • organizing / advocacy

    Report on mobile phones in citizen media

    • citizen media bringing minor but significant changes


    • one of the few areas where ICT are largely used
    • monitoring as an established procedure, mobiles as enhancing it
    • example: Ghana 2008 – went very well

    Key issues:

    • Incredibly promising and exciting
    • Commercial, competitive, very fluid field
    • Privacy and security
    • Fragmented platforms
    • Many pilots, no scale
    • Impact unclear. Much trial and error
    • Focus on apps but not on an enabling environment
    • Lack of open platforms and applications
    • Significant capacity issues (NGOs and Gov)
    • Lack of capable intermediaries
    • Little knowledge of what works in what setting
    • Data alone may be largely useless unless it provides the right information delivered through the right channel in the right form at the right time.

    A framework

    • Additive versus transformative
    • Contextual and user-focused
    • Sustainable (unsolved)
    • Driven by demand – Build it and they will come does usually not work
    • Localized but shareable
    • Built on open standards?
    • Built on existing knowledge


    • Targeted (and outsourced) R&D
    • ICT innovation marketplaces
    • Venture funds and public private partnerships
    • IT, mobile, data, information visualization, etc
    • User adoption studies and contextual research
    • Nokia and Microsoft
    • Better topographies (and case studies)

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    eDevelopment workshop on mobile innovation – Session 6
    was published on 16.09.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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    eDevelopment workshop on mobile innovation – Session 5

    Notes from the World Bank eDevelopment Thematic Group workshop on “Mobile Innovations for Social and Economic Transformation – From Pilots to Scaled-up Implementation on 16 September in Washington DC.


    Session 5: Mobile Applications in Agriculture and Rural Development


    Introduction: Tim Kelly, Lead ICT Policy Specialist, WB

    The dilemma bread vs. mobile phones was never a real dilemma – mobile phones help us to make better, cheaper, … bread


    Framing the Topic and Learning from Experience
    Kerry McNamara
    , Consultant, ARD

    The question is different from sector to sector

    What we’re talking about are wireless – what are the opportunities for expanding wireless coverage

    Impact of mobiles – letter a = access

    • more people have access to a mobile signal than ever
    • that’s changing our whole work

    affordability, appliance – SMS as the most simple application

    Changes don’t happen because of the mobile device but because of the ecosystem the device creates

    Not what we can do – but what we should do

    We tend to focus on the applications

    • making agricultural markets more efficient
    • although evidence may not be solid

    We want people to have access – but we should think beyond the device & beyond the hand of the individual

    The best interventions begin with a definition of the problem and clear design principles

    • the problem is not the technology
    • ICT is only the tool – we have to look how ICTs can help

    We should talk about mobility, not about devices

    • Combination of mobility, distance and time is interesting
    • we shouldn’t be too fixated on platforms

    How is information broadly understood? How can it be transformative?

    We need to think about policies and regulations

    Often in the last 10 years fascination with gadgets has cost us good development practice

    What is to be replicated when trying to replicate a project? How much does the local context matter?

    In the ICT4D community we tended to engineers solutions – we have to focus more on enabling the environment for innovation


    David Edelstein, Director of ICT Innovation, Grameen Foundation

    Microfinance has been around 1000 years, but technology can make it a lot more efficient

    Grameen foundation – how can the mobile phone be used to improve the people’s lives?

    • different domains – also cross-domain
    • services that can be scaled and are sustainable

    Using phones to collect information – and also disseminate information

    Providing services over mobile phones

    • several criteria how the foundation identifies initiatives
    • specific project implementation process – rapid prototyping

    Crucial for success – having the right partners with high level engagement

    Service of the Grameen foundation in Uganda:

    • weather services
    • agriculture information
    • marketplace for farmers

    Live demo of the Google SMS search

    Community Knowledge Worker Initiative


    • Understanding needs – consult the user early and often
    • Be creative
    • Fail fast
    • Usability – trusted intermediary
    • Right partners


    Aparjita Goyal, Economist, Development Research Group, World Bank

    Example project E-Choupal – service to cut out intermediaries and buy directly from soy farmers – as a business strategy for a private company

    • Internet kiosks where the local prices are posted on a website
    • Ware houses = hubs established in town – farmers going there to sell directly to the private company
    • Improvement of the situation of farmers – higher average revenue for the farmers
    • Farmers with good quality sell to the private company – downward pressure on the price


    • increase of soy price of 2-3%
    • the further away the kiosks are from the market, the lower the impact
    • farmers are responding to increased price


    ICT in Agriculture Sourcebook
    Kerry McNamara

    Skipping this point due to lack of time – website


    Q & A

    Mobility is an enabler – timeliness in agriculture; the killer apps are in this sector

    Bundling information – transaction – eGovernment services can be powerful but are all served on different platforms

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    eDevelopment workshop on mobile innovation – Session 4

    Notes from the World Bank eDevelopment Thematic Group workshop on “Mobile Innovations for Social and Economic Transformation – From Pilots to Scaled-up Implementation on 16 September in Washington DC.


    Working Lunch & Session 4: Mobile Innovations in Education


    Introduction: Mike Trucano, Sr. ICT Policy Specialist


    Reaching Out to Transform Education
    Mohamed Ally
    , Professor, Athabasca University

    Some people in developing countries prefer buying a phone than buying food or clothes

    Mobile learning (= education & training) has become more and more interesting for many countries

    We’re moving from the e-world to the m-world

    • one issue: going from electronic libraries to mobile libraries
    • mobile education will help people achieve better basic education
    • mobile learning as a prerequisite for the other mobile services
    • need of more teacher training for mobile services

    Many marginalised groups need access to education

    We underestimate people from developing countries or living in remote areas in their abilities and interest in technology – e.g. Hole in the wall project by Sugata Mithra

    Digital divide is something of the past

    • how to provide learning materials for the people?
    • without content they won’t use the device
    • How to get teachers to prepare well designed mobile learning materials?

    Examples of mobile learning projects

    • language training
    • accent reduction
    • games for HIV/AIDS information
    • teacher support

    Mobile education has a major role to play in goal 1-8 of the Millenium Development Goals of the UN

    Education should be free & is a human right – Open Access mobile learning initiatives

    Mobile education to prevent intellectual starvation – can save a lot of problems the world faces now, as well

    With mobile technology ‘education for all’ is in reach

    Education is the most powerful weapon to change the world


    Improving Quality of Education through Innovative Use of Mobile Technology
    Kate Place, Program Manager, International Youth Foundation, BridgeIT download presentation


    • access to digital video content ‘on demand’
    • teacher training & support
    • learner centered

    Projects in the Philippines and Tanzania


    increase educational quality & student achievement in primary schools in math, science, English and life skills through the innovative use of cellular & digital technology

    Improving learning outcomes with the provided material – integrate BridgeIT in the education systems, improve teachers performance & learning gains


    • 1st system: SMS ordering and satellite download
    • 2nd system: mobile only with 2.5 / 3G network – eliminating a lot of middle steps

    Enhancing existing education with integrated ‘on demand’ videos

    • Only few training needed for the teachers


    • better learning results
    • more participation
    • higher motivation
    • increased attendance


    • complexity of startup operations
    • cost of initial investment – equipment, teacher training, developing videos, …
    • technology constantly evolving
    • project management
    • transition of ownership


    • other uses for classrooms – community education, …
    • prices decrease – possible scaling
    • dissemination of new content


    Commentary: representative

    Mobile education and mobile learning is about where eHealth was about 5 years ago

    Transition from E to M – there are huge numbers of rural communities getting mobiles who had no possibility to access the internet before – big shift

    Wonderful pilotes going on but interesting point

    • how have mobiles been used as a basic platform for literacy
    • a lot more happening in the informal than in the formal sector


    Q & A

    BridgeIT: works only on Nokia? can videos be shared between teachers? can teachers upload own content?

    Benefits include ensuring teachers present more of std. curriculum. So, main effect of intervention not tech?

    Often local governments cannot increase the budget of education, what to do there if you want to introduce mLearning?

    • Rethinking the model of education – keeping the cost down by enabling the student to learn from everywhere
    • The mobile phone is never going to replace the classroom

    Who is paying for the content provider? How is the business model?

    • so far BridgeIT is quite expensive but we are working on decreasing the cost of the package – projectors instead of TVs, solar power, …
    • there is already a phone out there which has an integrated projector – this will bring down the cost

    Donors keep financing content – what is your advice not to use donors money recreating content?

    • Changing the attitude of teachers – who say they only use their own material, motivating them to share their content

    What are lessons learned on using mLearning for literacy?

    How are experiences on issues of scaling up?

    mLearning is a great way of complementing education – education is not about only access, traditional approaches should not be be substituted

    • the role of the teacher will change – he will not disappear but become a facilitator, social software makes a difference, in social networks pupils form groups and interact; schools are nothing traditional, hundreds of years learning was a 1 to 1 tutoring, with mLearning we’re going back to that
    • it depends on which level you’re looking at – at primary and secondary level teachers are still very important; in higher education, distance education is definitely possible

    What about staff / on the job training?

    • World Bank wants to look at that – actual practices

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    eDevelopment workshop on mobile innovation – Session 3

    Notes from the World Bank eDevelopment Thematic Group workshop on “Mobile Innovations for Social and Economic Transformation – From Pilots to Scaled-up Implementation on 16 September in Washington DC.


    Session 3: Mobile Innovations in Health


    Chair Introduction: Arleen Seed, Senior eGovernment Specialist


    Mobile Communications for Health
    Brendan Smith, Senior Consultant, Vital Wave Consulting

    focusing on technology in emerging markets

    past years – sharp rise in in interest for eHealth solution & explosion in mobile phone usage

    mHealth (n) – the delivery of health care services via mobile communication devices

    • e.g. digital patient data – mHealth may provide the lat mile access for that

    mobile phones reach further into developing countries than any other technology

    there’s a broad array of mHealth solutions

    • education & awareness
    • epidemy tracking
    • emergency
    • data collection
    • remote monitoring
    • diagnostic & treatment support

    mHealth is implemented in developing countries around the world

    different target groups

    a lot of projects focus more on health system outcomes than health outcomes

    there is a huge need for research on outcomes of mHealth projects

    • to establish a proof of concept
    • beyond the pilot state

    most projects use data collection technology, not so much SMS or voice technology (only 5%)

    • voice calls are expensive in most developing countries

    more sophisticated applications also cost more and require higher capacities

    case study:

    • text to change in Uganda
    • 15000 mobile phone subscribers
    • 40% more people tested for HIV

    Conclusion – advice for strong and sustainable mHealth projects:

    • Forge strong partnerships
    • Be accessible
    • Design with the end user in mind and maintain a focus on usability
    • Build a long-term funding plan
    • Set measurable goals
    • Collaborate with other mHealth organizations


    Rwanda Case Study
    Pamela Johnson
    , Co-Founder and Chief Health Officer, Voxiva
    Ruton Hinda, TRACplus
    Jean Philbert Nsengimana, Voxiva SARL.

    Founding Voxiva: Connecting the internet and the mobile phone can make a difference

    IT has transformed financial services in a substantial way – there is a similar possibility in health which has just begun

    TRACnet platform:

    • builds on existing telecom infrastructure
    • collecting real time information from the field via mobile phone, …
    • communicate
    • analyzes data and visualizes it
    • get feedback in real time
    • identifying shortage of medicine
    • Strong partnerships are vital

    Access and use

    • widespread access- 1000 user at 219 facilities throughout Rwanda
    • multi-channel access using a national toll free phone number, web, a PC client, a mobile phone client
    • 90% facilities reporting by IVR


    • more than 95% routine reporting


    • 99% uptime
    • secure, access controlled, redundant datacenter infrastructure hosted in Rwanda managed 24/7
    • TRACnet leverages a standard based infrastructure evolving into open standards from scale and interoperability

    Challenges & opportunities:

    • in the last 10 years all the health centers have gotten mobile phone coverage, in the next decade they all will have high bandwidth connectivity, health centers and schools get more and more connected,  many more changes with unforeseen consequences
    • Sustainability of large scale systems: very different as in private sector
    • Complex architecture also creates more problems – passwords, interoperability, …

    e-SOKO: mobile based agriculture information system in Rwanda

    • based on TRACnet approach
    • improving efficiency very much


    Commentary by Andi Dervishi, Global Practice Lead, Investments in Payments, IFC

    Parallels to the mBanking session & challenges for investors

    • it’s a big big market as everybody on earth is a potential consumer of these services
    • there has to exist a core electronic backbone – but does not exist yet in the health sector
    • general regulation around healthcare is obsolete, there has to be more freedom for companies to operate more freely
    • bottleneck – the business will only move with the pace of the government

    data problem in eHealth system, it’s more complex and bigger

    • also limited to information services only as doctors and nurses are still in charge, they only have to be informed


    • Establishing the core electronic backbone
    • Integration of core health system with big players in place


    Q & A

    Challenges and successes in cooperating with the ministry of Health?

    • critical mass of human capacity to work with private sector – finding out the needs of the beneficiaries, quite much work
    • understanding of all pieces for health solution work, understanding of technology, opening up the minds of certain people

    Rwanda has an eHealth strategy – does Ghana have one too?

    Is there a focus on women?

    • Often women are the primary decision makers on health care; study in rural Uganda: women valued their mobile phones very highly

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    eDevelopment workshop on mobile innovation – Session 2

    Notes from the World Bank eDevelopment Thematic Group workshop on “Mobile Innovations for Social and Economic Transformation – From Pilots to Scaled-up Implementation on 16 September in Washington DC.


    Session 2: Mobile Innovations in Financial Services


    Chair Introduction: Arata Onoguchi

    How can the payment industry support the World Bank with projects and vice-versa


    DRC ex-Combatant Allowance Payment Project
    Roisin De Burca
    , Senior Social Development Specialist, WB

    Miyanda Mulambo, Managing Director, Celpay Zambia Ltd.

    Project in DRC – transition between military and civil life

    • Payments for ex combatants via mobile and available cash in the country – Celplay
    • Problem: question of supply and demand
    • the project is working now


    • Celpay operating in Zambia, Kenya, Zimbabwe, … – actually a mobile payment company
    • Operating since 2002
    • Business model – not a bank but a technology company
    • partner with banks that hold the money, agents and mobile operators
    • services e.g. corporate payment solutions
    • providing services which make cash transactions obligatory

    Project – how did it work?

    • paying out 25$ to ex-combatants
    • facilitated with an application developed by Celpay
    • registration of area of living at a central point, getting an ID card and a PIN
    • possibility to collect the payment at the living area with the ID and PIN at a Celpay agent
    • good for people without mobile phones and bank accounts
    • one of the biggest challenges: one of the first programs like that all around the world, we were learning as we went by
    • hard to find agents as there were few people starting businesses right after the war
    • a lot of resistance from certain parts of the government – corruption tends to be a big problem and certain people didn’t like transparent solutions

    There are various ways to apply this application

    Q & A:

    was there a standardization for the cell phones?

    • works on pretty much every mobile phone

    entry of mobile network operators in the mobile payment space a problem for independent payment providers?

    • will indeed be a problem, but operators often have the primary goal to keep their providers
    • there will always be a need for innovative solutions


    Banking the Poor via G2P Payments
    Sarah Rotman, Associate Microfinance Analyst, CGAP

    A lot of people get money from their governments

    • not on an account which allows them to save
    • they have no possibility to save money or spend only half

    The officials who are dealing with them are not really caring about this financial inclusion of the poor

    Financial inclusion is desirable for the state as well

    • mobile payments
    • credit/debit card payments

    Electronic or mobile payment is even significantly cheaper and may reduce corruption

    Small savings accounts are expensive for basic banking, they need either large number of recipients, large sums or frequent long term schedule of payments

    Case studies of Brazil, South Africa

    There are certain conditions that need to be enabling & interesting to try out

    • the nature of the flows
    • regulatory openness of agents
    • a government body must stand behind it and promote it
    • donors can help design experiments – measurement of usage of financial services, impact on welfare, and understanding business case for providers

    Interesting to watch the coming years


    Commentary: Andi Dervishi, Global Practice Lead, Investments in Payments, IFC

    The mobile part is already there – we are delivering to an old need but we are revisiting the topic of electronic payment, mobile is only the channel

    in eCommerce a lot of players have come up in the last years

    in the industry the process of handling electronic money is in place now

    government has to think about regulations enabling the industry to create innovative solutions for this old problem


    Key Areas of Mobile Payments / Pre-paid Value Card Solutions
    Harish Natarajan, Payment Systems Specialist, WB

    prepaid card

    • no banking relationship required, easy to get
    • PIN code
    • can be used in an offline manner

    chip cards need to be distributed, issued / loaded, used for paying / withdrawing of money

    mitigating fraud – e.g. getting the card for a particular usage

    enhanced user experience because people don’t have to get in the queue for getting funds but use the ones already on the card

    several success stories in several countries

    the technology is there, the various players would be ready, big potential


    sociology of a card vs. a cell phone is very different – which technologies are better to reach the people intendeed to? does technology really make no difference?

    • mobile channel is a lot channel of course, but we should be aware that the technology is already there, we have to clear our minds from the implementation channels to talk about the service again – business perspective rather than technology perspective

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    eDevelopment workshop on mobile innovation – Session 1

    Notes from the World Bank eDevelopment Thematic Group workshop on “Mobile Innovations for Social and Economic Transformation – From Pilots to Scaled-up Implementation on 16 September in Washington DC.


    Session 1: Overview of Mobile Innovations Space and Enabling Environment


    Chair Introduction: Deepak Bhatia, Lead e-Government Specialist, GICT

    There are a lot of mobile projects in place, but what does it take in terms of scaling up mobile solutions and really creating impact


    Oleg Petrov – Social networking and the webcast

    Twitter, blog coverage by – hashtag for Twitter is mobile09


    Opening Remarks: Philippe Dongier, Sector Manager, GICT
    The Opportunity for Mobile Services in Developing World

    There are many impressive stories how mobiles are used

    The World Bank believes that mobile technology is the way forward

    But there has been no major impact, the potential of ICTs has not yet been realized so far

    Mobile technology may change this in the near future – it’s quite transformational, every sector has to be creative to find solutions to also transform the own sector and realize the opportunities


    Brooke Partridge, CEO, Vital Wave Consulting

    M-Pesa: example for the incredible potential of formally addressing basic needs

    It’s not the technology itself, but what it can do what is exciting

    Subscriber market gets saturated very quick, 64% of users are in the developing world

    Pressure for mobile operators: offering more mServices in developing countries

    There are about 3.5 billion individual subscribers in the world

    Development of m-Services because new subscriber market is saturated and people desire for basic services

    mServices to meet basic human needs and for social services, especially in developing countries

    A lot of mServices can be provided by simple technology such as SMS

    • there are a lot of examples in BRIC countries which are already in use and successful
    • but a lot of them are pilots and have not been scaled

    Benefits of scaling services:

    • increased revenue of provider -> increasing incentives to create services
    • reaching larger populations
    • reduced unit costs
    • more efficiency by investing in improved technology

    Examples of projects that are reaching some scale:

    • mFinance: M-Pesa – sms based mobile account & money transfer; very successful but very unique and faces its own challenges
    • mCommerce: Souktel Jobmatch – mobile job marketplace, 8000 total users

    Value chain for mServices – very complex in terms of organizations involved, problematic for scaling

    The technology for mServices is there, what needed is innovations in business

    Opportunities and best practices for scaling:

    • stay in national borders
    • transfer pilot programs to more formal organizations
    • rigorous ROI analysis
    • keep it simple
    • development of government regulations

    Challenges to scale:

    • legal concerns, interoperability & regulations
    • priorities & risks
    • infrastructure & leadership
    • ecosystem

    Opportunities for World Bank impact – investments to enable scale in the private sector, funding & oversight of mServices business case

    • research, analysis & evaluation – national policies, user behaviour, impact
    • mServices Solution Development Toolkit


    Commentary: Yong Huyn Kwon, Sr. Information Officer, GICT

    several themes we have to think about

    governments play big role in the early stages, but private sector comes in later

    several questions that are hard to answer

    • are private and public sector doing their job well?
    • are all sectors cooperating with each other?
    • are there mediators or enablers who take the leading role in communication between the sectors?

    it’s difficult for the private sector to play the role the public one should play

    when we think about people in developing countries – are they only costumers or owners of their own industry?

    industry regulation is a big issue

    several problems are hard to solve for the private sector alone – cooperation with the public sector is essential

    Rajendra Singh, Sr. Regulatory Specialist, GICT

    A lot of changes are taking place in the mobile industry

    • Nokia considers itself no more as the absolute leader
    • iPhone has changed the market

    World Bank is involved in most sectors in developing and also aware of mobile technology

    Unique possibility to make development projects more efficient

    Big challenge for policy makers & regulators – the whole market is changing


    Q & A

    relation between income & mobile footprint – how was that calculated?

    mGovernment applications in Africa – isn’t the tipping point between SMS and mobile web coming closer? what are you suggestions concerning that?

    • Brook; it’s not time yet due to infrastructure and devices
    • Phillipe: depending in the field we want to work there is potential – e.g. equipping health workers with modern devices and targetting them specifically

    technical question concerning the real number of mobile subscribers (3.5 bill) – what was your methodology? I think it’s too high

    • taking numbers from the ITU of subscriptions, 90% of total are the addressable market in a population, everything above that was considered to be duplicate

    Moldova: mobile carriers get 40% of revenue, value added services should be offered; quasi monopolistic situation, we need regulations

    • World Bank already does research on real impact and regulations – that’s what the support of the World Bank should look like

    is scale the only possibility to achieve profit or are private-public partnerships also an option?

    if we are concerned about scale – what about the interoperability of mobile devices; how do we really pick up every user of mobile devices when there are so large gaps in the user groups;

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