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These grants are for research and campaign activities that are linked to APC’s strategic advocacy areas. They can be used for research and advocacy around internet access and rights, as well as activities that build civil society capacity to participate in internet governance. These grants support local campaigns that contribute to members’ advocacy work and are also meant to enable members to participate in APC-wide campaigns.

List of projects implemented in 2022:

Summaries of selected research and campaign grants (2022)
7amleh-The Arab Center for Social Media Advancement – Advocacy for Palestinians online: Meta's Content Moderation Policies

Over the past five years, 7amleh has seen how powerful cooperation between key actors in the MENA region and international bodies can create change to the policies of technology companies, especially US-based companies that are targets of 7amleh’s work (i.e. Facebook, Google, PayPal, Twitter and Microsoft), and inevitably improve the protection of people’s human rights, especially Palestinians. Building on these successful deliverables, the proposed project will be a continuation of the efforts of the Palestinian Digital Rights Coalition, and 7amleh plans to continue these advocacy efforts and expand the reach and scope of these kinds of campaigns.

AlterMundi – Connectivity and Rurality: Problems of Internet Access from Territories and Sovereign Discourses

AlterMundi considers access to connectivity in a comprehensive way, where people and communities inhabit the internet connection from their territorial needs. Accessing the internet in the rural communities of Córdoba, Argentina is accessing other fundamental rights such as health, education, the self-determination of peoples, the defence of the territory, etc., and how to access it must also be determined from the community.

This project consists, on the one hand, of the audiovisual production of a series of chapters in documentary format about an institutional project of AlterMundi, framed in the generation of sovereign discourses of rural communities about the problems in their territories and possible approaches, centred on access to connectivity. On the other hand, a press campaign will be carried out to disseminate this material. AlterMundi will hold two face-to-face meetings where representatives of communities, educational institutions, community networks and social organisations will share their experiences and articulate strategies to address problems in their territories, with a focus on access to connectivity, development of infrastructure, search for financing, etc.

Associació Pangea - Coordinadora Comunicació per a la Cooperació (Pangea) – Is Your TECH Use Sustainable, Ethical and Safe?

In the last few years, Pangea has identified the need to better explain and expand key practices and concepts related to internet services to its community to improve their knowledge and therefore their capacity to critically decide and choose which technologies are more ethical and sustainable to use. In its past projects, “How do you TECH at your organisation?” and “Your TECH choices make a difference”, Pangea focused on different subjects related to ecological and sustainable use of TECH, as well as to ethical criteria for choosing TECH options.

This project aims to continue reinforcing those efforts and shortening the distance between transformative organisations and ethical technologies through the development, publication and dissemination of educational and practical materials on critical decisions in the consumption and use of information and communications technology.

AZUR Développement and Colnodo (partnership) – Raising Awareness on GBV Using a Mobile Application

The project will develop a mobile application for the prevention of violence against women, girls and children in the Republic of Congo. This application will inform girls, boys and women about the manifestations and consequences of gender-based violence (GBV). More than 600 girls, boys and women will learn how to prevent violence, what to do in case of violence, and where to find support. The mobile app supports the assistance services  developed by four one-stop-centres for women and children survivors of violence in Congo managed by AZUR Développement.

Colnodo, which has extensive experience in the development and deployment of mobile apps, will support AZUR Développement in the development of the mobile app. This project builds a partnership between the two organisations, both members of APC.

Collaboration on International ICT Policy for East and Southern Africa (CIPESA) – Advancing Internet Governance Debate in East Africa

The East African Internet Governance Forum (EAIGF) aims at creating a community of practice that will build a sustaining foundation for meaningful participation of East African stakeholders in internet public policy debates at the national, regional and international level. The Forum provides a platform for an inclusive multilateral, multistakeholder and multilingual discussion on issues pertinent to enhancing internet development in East Africa. This year the forum will be held under the theme “A Resilient Internet for Shared Common Knowledge in East Africa” and is scheduled to take place 10-11 November 2022 in Arusha, Tanzania at the East African Community headquarters. The Forum, which draws from conversations from national IGFs, will bring together different internet industry players to deliberate on how to build an inclusive digital economy, strengthen access and inclusion and address cybersecurity needs in East Africa. 

Digital Empowerment Foundation (DEF) – Community Network Xchange Asia Pacific 2022: Walking the Talk with the Internet, Community and Networks

With the aim to directly engage the local communities and their innovative community networks with a global audience, Digital Empowerment Foundation (DEF) in partnership with Internet Society (ISOC), APNIC, APC and A4AI, among others, have been organising the Community Network Exchange-Asia Pacific (CNX) since 2017.

Most of the under-connected regions in the world are dependent on competitive corporate service providers or monopolies to access the internet. In the developing world, owing to the lower rate of return on investment, commercial companies have a lower interest in investing in connectivity. Even when they provide internet connectivity, the per capita internet rates are so exorbitant that the poor and marginalised are not able to access the internet meaningfully. Similarly, in remote areas of the developed world, internet rates are still high due to monopolisation. Community networks have been developing locally informed innovative methods to address the connectivity gaps. However, there are still knowledge gaps in terms of the feasibility, execution and operation of community networks. 

CNX aims to inform policy communities, researchers, experts and practitioners about the community network model and its relevance to last-mile connectivity and address the existing information, policy and knowledge gap in order to popularise more community-based connectivity solutions. 

Fundación Escuela Latinoamericana de Redes (EsLaRed) – Environmental Policies in Venezuela: A Look at the Public Policies that Affect the Management of Electronic Equipment Waste and its Impact on Environmental Justice and Sustainability of Communities in Venezuela

Not only through carbon dioxide and plastic waste, chemical products and other compounds generated by humans is our planet being polluted, but also as a result of the extremely high development of information and communication technologies (ICTs). In the last 20 to 30 years, the use and consumption of electronic devices have increased uncontrollably worldwide, and over time they become waste that also pollutes the environment. Venezuela does not escape this reality, and that is why EsLaRed is interested in contributing significantly to confronting this dangerous situation, in order to reduce the impact produced by the high consumption of mobile phones, tablets and computers, in addition to waste that comes from electronic audio and video equipment commonly used in every home.

Given this context, it is necessary to evaluate public environmental policies related to the management of electronic waste, which affect environmental justice and the sustainability of communities in Venezuela, and to promote responsible and sustainable consumption of technological waste, as well as awareness and implementation of “the 3Rs” (reduce, reuse and recycle) among the population. For this reason, a research proposal is presented to determine the current situation in Venezuela on the management of electronic waste by the public and private sectors, the legal framework, and environmental public policies with a view to conducting an analysis of their incidence and environmental impact, particularly in the communities of Mérida State, as a pilot project that can later be easily extended to the entire national territory.

Fantsuam Foundation and Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD) (partnership) – Promoting Digital Livelihoods for Rural Women in Kaduna and Bauchi States of Nigeria

This project will equip 80 rural girls and women with relevant IT and digital entrepreneurship skills that will enable them to compete with their urban counterparts in education and businesses and also bridge the existing gender digital, urban-rural gap. Kafanchan is predominantly Christian; 40% of the participants will be selected from the Muslim communities. In Bauchi, which is predominantly Muslim, 40% of the participants will be from the Christian communities. The project thereby aims at an inter-religious composition. This is especially important in communities where there has been sectarian crisis; the intersectionality will promote mutual respect and acceptance. 

The increase of more women and girls in the digital entrepreneurship and IT sector will raise their business profiles and encourage their inclusion in decision making. It will also empower them to advocate for relevant gender policies that will impact positively on their lives, wealth creation and career development. 

Korean Progressive Network Jinbonet – Response to Big Tech's Monopoly and Infringement of Personal Data

Big Tech, such as Facebook, Google, and Naver and Kakao in the Republic of Korea, has become the power to provide the internet environment for most users. Users access various information, including news, communicate with friends, and enjoy movies and music through services and platforms provided by Big Tech. 

Korean society is not yet fully aware of the problems of Big Tech. As there are domestic Big Tech companies such as Naver and Kakao, compared to other countries, there are many voices calling for caution in introducing regulations on Big Tech to foster domestic industries. However, not only global Big Tech, but also domestic Big Tech have similar problems. In order to protect users' rights, it is necessary to introduce legislation that can regulate Big Tech's personal information infringement and monopoly.

To this end, Jinbonet plans to continue regular seminars to understand international trends related to Big Tech. There are various reports that analyse Big Tech's problems, rulings, and bills for regulation around the world, but they are not well known in the Republic of Korea. Based on seminars, Jinbonet will write articles or translate foreign materials dealing with various issues surrounding Big Tech, such as the problem of Big Tech monopoly, the impact of Big Tech on media diversity, bills for regulation against Big Tech in the United States and Europe, infringement of personal data by digital advertising systems, infringement of personal data by algorithms and legal proceedings surrounding major Big Tech companies, etc. And then, it will publish a research report on Big Tech by collating the articles.  Finally, Jinbonet will hold an open forum involving various stakeholders to discuss how to regulate Big Tech.

Jokkolabs Banjul - Rural Internet: Meaningful Accessibility as a Tool for Digital Inclusion in the Gambia

The problem to be addressed in this project is the poor internet accessibility in rural Gambia, which has been a detriment to digital inclusion in the whole of Gambia. This issue mainly affects four regions (North Bank Region, Lower River Region, Upper River Region and Central River Region). For this purpose, Jokkolabs Banjul will carry out systematic field research visits and testing in rural towns, villages and regional municipal capitals to determine current existing connectivity in terms of 2G, 3G and even 4G, and why the broadband network is not fully used in rural Gambia, especially in public institutions. It is hoped that this will help convince the relevant stakeholders to tackle the lack of meaningful internet access in rural Gambia. A good example of the importance of this endeavour is that over 65% of school failures in the last high school diploma results came from rural-based schools, whose teachers lack proper connectivity to use online resources as a teaching tool and where libraries contain outdated books, if they exist at all. In addition, rural young people and women involved in agricultural trade lack the opportunity to use the internet properly to improve their business, due to the lack of meaningful access, since the absence of broadband increases the cost of internet access for rural dwellers in the Gambia: the cost of 1 GB of data is approximately USD 5, one of the highest rates in Africa. These are the issues that this research project will address.

Media Awareness and Justice Initiative (MAJI) – Digital Security for Civic Actors (DISCA)

This project will strengthen and build the capacity of MAJI personnel, partner human rights defenders in Rivers state, and collaborating investigative journalists on the secure use of mobile devices, online applications and social media platforms. Over the proposed time frame of the project, a total of 90 identified human rights actors will be engaged with and trained using hands-on practical sessions. The trainings will focus on data and digital security for human rights defenders and civic actors. This is strategically relevant as it ensures the increase in data and digital security among civic actors while carrying out their civic duties of human rights defence, environmental justice campaigning and advocacy for environmental sustainability. To increase the reach to more human rights defenders at risk, MAJI will develop an online digital security resource page and toolkit that will provide simple information on key digital security tools and application download links to services such as VPNs, Tor, Signal, and password encryption software for Android, iOS, Windows and Chrome based devices. Using this digital security resource page, local actors, CSOs, human rights defenders, investigative journalists and paralegal personnel will be able to access relevant information for strengthening of their work and training of partner networks and collaboratory groups. The project will consist of capacity building for identified local actors, development of an online toolkit and collaborative interactions with key actors. 

Media Matters for Democracy (MMfD) – Public Awareness Campaign on Corporate Accountability

This project proposes a public awareness campaign on corporate accountability and how the lack of it affects general internet users in Pakistan. This will be a thought-provoking digital campaign spread over three weeks and will include three mini documentaries (five to seven minutes each), three podcasts, six infographics and illustrations. The campaign will incorporate learnings from the research and journalistic work being carried out by MMfD under the APC impact grant project “Collectivising for Corporate Accountability in Asia”. 

Servelots – Anthillhacks for Regional Collaboration

Anthillhacks started in 2015. captures the spirit of the event. COWMesh, our community network, was set up and it was already an invitation for creative people in the region to come together and to be introduced to the possibilities of a community network ( Since then it has attempted to be an annual event which opens up the possibilities and the potential of being in a location. is the reference website. 

Servelots now intends to formalise the event with this support in enabling regional capacity building and research community network practices and chart future pathways. This worked reasonably and we think this model has a good future, not only in scheduling the event and cross-node participation, but also in bringing regional community network aspirants to come together and 1) participate in capacity building activity and 2) experiment with local offline apps and services so as to "take home" the mesh-building capacity to their communities.

Unwanted Witness – A Cross-Country Study to Assess Legal and Technical Compliance with Standards and Principles of Data Protection by Private Actors in Uganda and Kenya

Data collection and processing are increasingly becoming a major concern for the information age, where a lot of data is being generated and processed by state and non-state actors. Our interconnected world has become even more pervasive, ubiquitous and prominent. As personal data has taken an increasing role in all of our lives and our lives translate ever more into electronic media and data, the questions of who collects that data, what it is used for, who it is shared with and what rights we have over that data are as fundamental to us as any other human right.

To date, three East African countries, i.e. Kenya, Rwanda and Uganda, have adopted data protection legal and institutional frameworks, meant to protect people’s privacy rights. The laws require data collectors/processors to be transparent around access to and use of personal data, and to respect our right to privacy and dignity at all times. While some companies are increasingly striving to meet these expectations, many are are lagging behind. They fail to enact best practices around transparency, or do not prioritise user privacy and dignity. 

To foster compliance of data collectors/processors with international standards and principles of data protection, Unwanted Witness initiated the Privacy Scorecard last year. The Privacy Scorecard is a monitoring tool used to provide data subjects with critical information on how different collectors/processors comply with the principles and standards of data protection. 

The inaugural Privacy Scorecard was published last year with focus on Uganda, but this year Unwanted Witness seeks to undertake a cross-country study, specifically, on Uganda and Kenya. The study will focus on the law, corporate policies and practices, turning a spotlight on how the policies of private companies either advance or hinder the privacy rights of users. 

Zaina Foundation – Digital Security Training for People with Disabilities in Tanzania

In Tanzania, people with disabilities are left behind in using online platforms due to insecurity and lack of skills for using digital technology in safe ways. People with disabilities lack digital security skills and tools: nine out of 10 do not know about secure open source tools like the Signal mobile app, virtual private networks (VPNs) and the Tor Browser.

In this project, the plan is to host three days digital security training for people with disabilities. During these three days, Zaina Foundation plans to train participants on digital security skills like encryption, mobile safety, secure communication and storage of data, sharing different tools and practices. Emphasis will be placed on open source tools like Signal and Tor.