You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

The World Bank's Lo-Tech Open Data Experiment

BY Jessica McKenzie | Wednesday, October 30 2013

Although the open data movement is associated with the Internet and tech-savvy types, an estimated 65 percent of the world's population remains entirely offline. As part of their ongoing push to open up development data, the World Bank has tested initiatives in remote communities to see how open data could be used offline. They wanted to put the assumption that open data is too difficult to understand (especially without the advantage of computer literacy) to the test.

Read More


Making All Voices Count: Getting Governments to Respond to Citizen Feedback

BY Jessica McKenzie | Wednesday, October 2 2013

Government transparency and civic engagement are all well and good, of course, but it's only when governments respond to citizen feedback that palpable change can take place in societies. That is the driving idea behind Making All Voices Count, an initiative backed by a consortium of civil society organizations which will provide funding for projects tackling “citizen action and government responsiveness" in order to "close the feedback loop." This initiative will pack a punch: they have $45 million bucks behind them. They are soliciting the first round of proposals now, due by November 8, so we contacted director Marjan Besuijen to learn more.

Read More


New Tactics in Fight Against Corruption Include Crowdsourcing, Mobile Games and SMS

BY Jessica McKenzie | Tuesday, April 9 2013

Transparency International's logo.

Transparency International has awarded grants to its chapters implementing new solutions in their anti-corruption activism – from playing a game to learn about corruption to sending a SMS to report an incident. The projects emphasize increasing public awareness and in most cases rely on individuals taking initiative. Read More


Will Mobile Banking Empower Women, or Just Telecoms?

BY Julia Wetherell | Friday, March 1 2013

The "virtuous circle" of MFS, according to GSMA's study.

In many developing economies, while men earn wages outside the household, women are often acting behind the scenes as the money managers at home.  Yet a recent study found that mobile banking and financial services, which have gotten a lot of press as solutions for bringing economic empowerment to citizens in developing nations, has largely passed over women who could be using them.  Could m-banking strengthen women’s financial practices and narrow the digital gender gap? Or will promoting it only line the pockets of telecom corporations?

Read More


Indonesians Combat Rape Culture Via Social Media

BY Julia Wetherell | Wednesday, January 23 2013

Indonesians have taken to social media to fight misogyny in the largely Muslim nation. Like in India, where several shocking incidents over the past year have led to outrage, public discourse over rape and other forms of sexual assault is the issue in question. Read More


Indonesian Activists Mount Online Anti-Corruption Campaign

BY Lisa Goldman | Monday, October 8 2012

With Indonesia's official anti-corruption agency threatened by the police for targeting graft amongst its senior officers, local activists have mounted a comprehensive online campaign to protest and raise awareness of corruption. Read More


Indonesian Grassroots Group Promotes Internet Freedom

BY Lisa Goldman | Friday, October 5 2012

With the increase in around the region of government legislation that would limit online freedom of expression, Indonesian bloggers have formed an organization to raise awareness and possibly fight back. Read More


How Simple Technology Facilitates Effective Communication and Relief in Disaster Zones

BY Lisa Goldman | Wednesday, August 22 2012

Mobile phones and Internet access are now common in developing nations, but aid agencies have been slow to use that technology in order to implement effective two-way communication in disaster zones. A BBC media action policy briefing presents several case studies that illustrate how community organizations are effectively using simple available technology to create communication hubs and facilitate disaster relief. Read More

Indonesian Open Government Initiative Puts Public Services Online

BY Lisa Goldman | Thursday, August 16 2012

In Indonesia, a recent open government initiative to improve transparency and accountability included a contest in which ministries competed with innovations to streamline bureaucracy. The 10 finalists include a web app for online passport and driver's license applications. Read More

Indonesia Blocks Porn Sites During Ramadan

BY Lisa Goldman | Monday, July 23 2012

The Times of India reports that Indonesia has blocked millions of pornography websites for the month of Ramadan. Claiming that there were more than 2 billion porn sites online, the Minister of Communications said:

"We will block more porn sites during Ramadan, though that doesn't mean that we will allow such sites to operate during the rest of the year."
Read More