Action Research Network

We build research capacity to ensure an open, fair and sustainable internet

The APC Action Research Network is a network of researchers –occasionally professional researchers but more usually communications activists— who focus on “information society” themes such as internet access and mobile phones, environmental sustainability and technology, privacy and security online, sexuality rights and content regulation. Most are based in or associated with APC member organisations (80% of which are based in developing countries).

Caveat: We don’t engage in “action research”. We carry out research for action. Our research is intended to lead to positive changes in the policy environments in the countries and regions where the researchers live and work.

What we are researching

Carrying out research in three areas where change is needed urgently:

1. Sustainable ICT use in our own ICT4D community. Our research on GreeningIT will focus on our own extended community but we do aim to make as many people as possible as aware of how to use their technology in an environmentally-friendly way, so that their ICT use is, as they are of recycling paper or plastic bottles

2. Opening up the radio spectrum So that it can be used to provide affordable internet access.

3. Open governance: As a result of the research in open government data in Uganda, the Collaboration on International ICT Policy in East and Southern Africa (CIPESA) developed three reports: the first looks at perceptions of citizens on open governance in the country; the second assesses Uganda’s readiness to open up government data ; and the third describes the process developed for the open governance network building in the country.

4. Privacy, security, cybercrime and human rights in policy and regulation. We will facilitate learning and networking among researchers working in these areas to scope out where further research would be most effective to support good policy change in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean.

We expect the ARN to operate for at least five years with building and strengthening the network as an iterative and continuous process.

Photo: APC convened a Networking and Learning Forum in March 2011 bringing together the Action Research Network with partners and relevant experts to share knowledge, strengthen networks and define future activities. The three-day event focused particularly on research and communications tactics. (Source: APC)

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