"Access to knowledge is both an issue of economic development and an issue of individual participation and human liberty" says an article by Jack M. Balkin. This buzzword makes reference to a world in which information and knowledge are increasingly becoming like products. Knowledge is worth money. Knowledge is worth power. Without much fanfare, a group of twenty-two Asians sat down in Bankok last March to tap into that power. They drew out a roadmap of actions in order for that knowledge to stay in the hands of the people. Idealistic? Maybe, but the actions are real and timely and might take you further than you think.
Funredes, APC member in the Dominican Republic, is in the process of transition towards work which, in its words, “will involve more reflection than action.” APCNews spoke with Funredes’ director Daniel Pimienta about the new focus of the organisation.
Huaral is a coastal valley in Peru with a desert climate where it never rains. It is also the name of an initiative that CEPES, APC member in Peru, is carrying out in the region. And above all, it is proof that the creative use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) can improve the lives of farmers in an entire region, if not beyond. APCNews spoke to Maicu Alvarado of CEPES in December 2006 at the Latin American APC members’ meeting about the latest news on this rural development work which has now been underway for six years.
In campaign mode, everyone understands the importance of getting a voice in the media. The problem is, the mainstream media often trivialises or misunderstands your cause. So? You needn’t just sit back and groan. Technology is today increasingly placing the tools in the hands of those who want to wield them. And it’s getting simpler, more affordable and freer all the time.
In Uruguay, the National Women’s Institute led a consultation process with a range of social actors to develop the First National Plan for Equality of Opportunities and Rights. One of its chapters specifically includes gender as a strategic priority. According to GenderIT collaborator Cecilia Gordano, this represents “a big step forward on the slow journey towards consolidating a national strategy for digital inclusion. Nevertheless, the timidity with which this need is addressed leads one to believe that pieces of this puzzle are still missing”.
When the history of the deadly Dec 26 Indian Ocean tsunami comes to be written, will the role of the media be praised, criticised or just seen as inadequate? "We didn’t do a good job in warning people. But once the disaster hit, we did a good job in (spreading the world)," said Colombo-based TV journalist Nalaka Gunawardene.
Eight children, eight stories. Some spell a tale of hope, others of despair. All are linked by a gigantic tidal wave now globally known as a tsunami that struck the Indian Ocean on Dec 26, 2004. Two years after the deadly day, the Colombo-based TVE Asia Pacific is distributing a film that tells the insightful story of the tragedy by marking the changes reflected in these young lives, across four countries, including India.
Blind use of authority, high-handedness of intelligence agencies, yawning gaps in policies and misleading rules and regulations have all converged on Pakistan in early December, when the Federal Investigation Agency and staff of the Pakistan Telecommunication Authority raided the offices of small VoIP start-up in Islamabad. Read the full story on APCNews.
Skills for the people. That’s the motto of APC’s newest member, the Tokyo-based Japan Computer Access For Empowerment (JCAFE). JCAFE’s agenda is to "fill the gap" between the potential offered by the net, and the blocks to accessing it – specially by non governmental organisation who lack the technology and skills to take advantage of this exciting new medium.
APC is currently looking to engage four ICT policy researchers to conduct detailed country studies of the SAT-3/WASC submarine cable in the following countries: Angola, Cameroon, Ghana, and Senegal. The specific context of the research will be on the areas that Open Access (as a concept) seeks to impact – namely access and cost. Research will be conducted on the impact SAT-3/WASC has had on the competitiveness of international and Internet services in each country. Interested researchers should in the first instance submit a copy of their CV and a sample of written work (of no more than 2000 words) to firstname.lastname@example.org Please include "SAT-3/WASC Cable Research Project" AND the name of the country you are applying to research on, in the Subject field of your email. Applications should be received no later than Monday 27 November 2006 (17:00 GMT).