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WeGov

Chinese Internet Giant to Fix Backlogged Hospital System

BY Jessica McKenzie | Monday, June 16 2014

The Internet giant Alibaba Group is angling to disrupt China's inefficient hospital system with an ambitious ten year plan to facilitate nearly every interaction between patient and hospital, from appointment booking to payment to medicine delivery.

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WeGov

Facebook Seeks Approval as Financial Service in Ireland. Is the Developing World Next?

BY Jessica McKenzie | Wednesday, April 16 2014

Mark Zuckerberg (Brian Solis)

On April 13 the Financial Times reported that Facebook is only weeks away from being approved as a financial service in Ireland. Is this foray into e-money motivated by Facebook's desire to conquer the developing world before other corporate Internet giants do? Maybe.

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WeGov

The Role of Technology in the Aftermath of Westgate

BY Jessica McKenzie | Wednesday, September 25 2013

An image that spread on social media networks during the Westgate attack (ILRI/Flickr)

“Are all our questions actually going to be answered?” That is the question of questions regarding the Westgate Mall, one of many that Kenyan citizens have posed to their government. Many have voiced their frustration and concern on Twitter. Altogether, they have at least 85 pressing questions which have been aggregated in a crowdsourced Google doc. There might have been more, but the administrator of the doc decided that the 85 questions were “adequate” and closed the doc. One of the most pressing unanswered questions in what the Christian Science Monitor called a “Kenya info blackout” is “Where are the hostages?”

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WeGov

Enthusiasm For Mobile Money In Togo Spills Out Onto Street

BY Jessica McKenzie | Tuesday, September 17 2013

Mobile money makes some dance for joy (khalidinho1/Flickr)

The only time banks get people dancing in the U.S. is in cheesy commercials. Not so in Togo, where Biz Tech Africa reports Moov sales agents were dancing on a vehicle driving down the streets of Lomé, spreading the gospel of mobile money. Moov is a cell service provider in Togo and they recently launched a mobile money provider called Flooz.

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WeGov

Why Did Mobile Money Flop In Nigeria?

BY Jessica McKenzie | Thursday, September 5 2013

Two years have passed since a mobile money service was deployed by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and it still has yet to catch on with the masses. According to a recent poll by the Nigerian research company NOI, only 6 out of 10 Nigerians know about the service (59 percent), and of that number only 13 percent are using it.

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WeGov

Google Launches Mobile Micropayments in Africa

BY Jessica McKenzie | Tuesday, April 30 2013

A Nairobi matatu (bus) (Wikipedia)

Google just announced the launch of rebranded electronic payment system BebaPay in Kenya, home to the popular and successful mobile money system M-Pesa. With the BebaPay card, Google tackles the notoriously chaotic bus system in Kenya. The BebaPay card standardizes fares and provides riders with receipts, protecting them from unscrupulous conductors charging hiked up fares or not providing change. And it costs consumers next to nothing: the card is free and there are no transaction fees, although cell phone operators can charge to transfer money to the card. With all those perks, many are asking, “What’s the catch?”

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WeGov

Mobile Banking Outpaces Traditional Banking in Kenya

BY Jessica McKenzie | Wednesday, April 24 2013

Screengrab from YouTube Video The Story of M-Pesa

Kenya’s mobile networks last year collectively held more in deposits than the country’s largest bank. The telecoms regulator CCK reported the mobile networks held Sh226 billion ($2.70 billion) in deposits at the end of last year while the largest commercial bank held Sh223 billion ($2.66 billion). The report said the number of mobile money transfer subscribers grew to 21.1 million from 19.3 million in the previous period, a growth of 9.4 percent.

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A TechPresident Podcast: Mobile Money, "Citizenville" and the Sequester

BY TechPresident | Thursday, February 28 2013

In this episode of the techPresident podcast: SARAH LAI STIRLAND: I think Gavin Newsom is like the Richard Branson of policy. He's a social entrepeneur. He doesn't necessarily get all the details. Richard Branson has this book called, "Screw It, Just Do It," and I think that pretty much encapsulates Gavin Newsom's approach to trying new things. He talks about trying and not failing, and it might sound very familiar to us because we write about this stuff, and we cover a lot of innovative people in government. But I'm sure for a lot of smaller governments that's not their approach. And I'm sure this book is valuable on that level. Read More

State Department Sets Out to Figure Out Mobile Money

BY Nancy Scola | Friday, July 23 2010

As part of its ongoing quest to figure out how it might apply modern technologies to the world's toughest problems, the U.S. State Department will bring together its employees, outside government staffers, and other ... Read More