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Online and On Foot, UN Collects Input On New Development Goals

BY Jessica McKenzie | Friday, May 10 2013

Screengrab of My World survey results

The United Nations is crowdsourcing input on the global development goals that will shape international policies – and the ebb and flow of billions of dollars in aid money – for up to fifteen years. The new development plan will replace the Millennium Development Goals when they expire in 2015. More than half a million people have participated in the crowdsourcing project. Read More

WeGov

In Jakarta, Open Environmental Data Meets Freedom of Information Law

BY David Eaves | Friday, May 10 2013

At a recent meeting of environmental advocates, a new idea emerged: that open access to environmental data should become an international standard. David Eaves writes that this is a signal that the open data movement is growing up. Read More

WeGov

Bulgaria Employs Online Tools to Ensure Safe and Fair Elections

BY Jessica McKenzie | Thursday, May 9 2013

Bokyo Borisov after his resignation via Wikipedia

While some activists threaten violence in the run up to Bulgaria’s upcoming election on May 12, others have created online tools to help inform voters and safeguard the electoral process.

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Pakistanis Take Refuge in Social Media Campaigning Before Election

BY Jessica McKenzie | Wednesday, May 8 2013

Screengrab from the Official MQM Twitter page

In the days leading up to Pakistan’s general election on May 11, politicians from the three major secular parties have been forced, by violent attacks on political rallies that have caused more than a hundred deaths, to stop holding political events in public areas. Instead, they have come to rely on Facebook and Twitter as a campaign platform. Read More

WeGov

New Web Platform Allows Students in Kenya, Uganda to Report Corrupt Professors

BY Jessica McKenzie | Monday, May 6 2013

Screengrab from Notinmycountry.org

Students in Kenyan and Ugandan universities now have an outlet to anonymously report professors and university personnel for corrupt activities or ineffective and lazy work. Read More

WeGov

Mapping Violence Against Journalists, Social Media Users and Bloggers in Mexico

BY Jessica McKenzie | Friday, May 3 2013

Screengrab from crowdsourced map

In a country where 87 journalists have been killed and 17 have disappeared since 2000, a new crowdsourced map offers a safe way to report and record attacks against journalists, bloggers, Facebook and Twitter users. A combined effort between Freedom House and the International Center for Journalists, as of May 3 the map already had 48 reports. Reports included physical, judicial, psychological and digital attacks.

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Google Follows UN Lead In Recognizing Palestine

BY Jessica McKenzie | Friday, May 3 2013

Screengrab from Google Palestine

Palestinian Googlers might have noticed something different about their search engine homepage on Thursday. Google has changed the subheading of the Palestinian edition, Google.ps, from the “Palestinian Territories” to “Palestine.” This acknowledgement by the search giant follows the United Nations decision in November 2012 to recognize Palestine as a non-member state, in spite of objections by the US and Israel.

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Now On YouTube: Indigenous Groups Burst Into Brazil’s Congress to Protest Land Rights Bill

BY Jessica McKenzie | Thursday, May 2 2013

Screengrab from political journalist's video of protest on YouTube

After waiting an entire day for an audience with Brazil’s Chamber of Deputies to discuss a controversial bill, hundreds of aboriginal Brazilians bypassed security guards and burst into the session. The disruption was caught live on the Chamber of Deputies TV channel, and later posted on YouTube. A political journalist posted a second, shakier video that shows confusion and chaos during the protest.

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Three Tech Initiatives for Combating the Spread of Malaria

BY Jessica McKenzie | Wednesday, May 1 2013

Mosquito via Wikipedia

Although prevention and control measures have led to a reduction in mortality rates from malaria by 25 percent since 2000, 3.3 billion people are still at risk for infection, according to the World Health Organization. The World Health Assembly’s goal is to reduce malaria case incidence rates by 75 percent (relative to the rates in 2000) by 2015. There are a number of new products or tools that help eliminate the spread of malaria, from tea to soap, but these are the top tech-based innovations:

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IBM Optimizes Ivory Coast Bus Routes by Mining Mobile Phone Data

BY Jessica McKenzie | Wednesday, May 1 2013

Abidjan, Ivory Coast (credit: Flickr/SoCE)

Cell phone data might be the next indispensable resource for urban planners. Mining mobility data from 2.5 billion call records, a team of IBM researchers identified modifications to bus routes in Abidjan, Ivory Coast, which could slash travel time up to 10 percent. Read More