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New app lets public help map disasters, conflicts and outbreaks

By Lin Taylor LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) — Swiping right or tapping on a mobile phone are not typical ways of helping poor communities, but a new app launched by a medical charity on Friday aims to use technology to help aid workers map areas at risk of conflict, disasters and disease. Using the latest

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Facebook’s Free Basics Incubator

Facebook and its Internet.org initiative (now called ‘Free Basics’), have faced their fair share of criticism, but I’m guessing that neither is going away anytime soon. So, here’s something that may be of interest to folks working with and/or designing mobile tools for lower income populations or those with lower end phones. Praekelt Foundation is partnering with Facebook on an open source toolkit of technologies and strategies that will open the Free Basics platform to more organizations and/or tech developers to adapt existing services or create new ones for distribution through the web and the Free Basics platform. Praekelt Foundation will be running this incubator for Free Basics. It will provide 100 social change organizations with tools, service and support worth a total of $200,000

Photo from Daniel Agee

Community Survey: Use of Digital Clinical Resources

Digital clinical resources are on- and off-line tools that are used in the context of medical education and/or care delivery with the overarching goal of Read More

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Happy birthday to me: On half centuries and legacies

This time tomorrow, fifty years ago, I came into the world and spent the proceeding twenty-seven years trying to figure out what the hell I was doing here. With the summer of 1993 came something of a rebirth, one that put me on the path to where I am today. But the years before were dominated by prolonged spells of frustration, searching and disappointment. It feels, at times, that I’ve only lived half a life, which is probably why I don’t feel anything like the fifty I’ll be tomorrow. Birthdays with significant numbers often bring with them periods of reflection, although reflecting is something I tend to do on a regular basis


Build Peace 2016: Towards Transformation

Excerpt from the Build Peace 2016 website. The conference will take place on September 9 – 11, 2016 in Zürich, Switzerland. Check out details here. If you are thinking of attending the conference, we strongly recommend you buy your tickets soon, since in past years we have sold out well in advance.  ### Peacebuilding is fundamentally about change, and most discussions about peacebuilding are really about how to change less than ideal situations into slightly better ones. Over time, answers to these questions have increasingly recognised that conflict might in fact contribute to positive political, cultural and societal processes.


Research Validates Effectiveness of Arogya’s Innovative mDiabetes Program

Exciting Results of mDiabetes Adds to mHealth Evidence Base Arogya World’s mDiabetes has shown exciting results: 40 percent more people improved their health behaviors as a result of receiving texts about diabetes prevention. The study was published this week in the Journal of Medical and Internet Research. mDiabetes sent twice-weekly text messages to a million people in India advising them to exercise, eat less fat, and eat more fruits and vegetables. New video by Arogya World discusses diabetes prevention in India The first to use the power of mobile to fight diabetes There are many firsts in our mDiabetes story. This effort is the first to use the power and reach of mobile phones to change diabetes risk behaviors in a large number of people from different parts of a vast country like India. The 40% impact obtained from a population level mHealth program like this, has implications for diabetes prevention in low and middle-income countries


Mobile tech enables family planning data access

A mobile tech project is helping eight Sub-Saharan African nations access new family planning data every six months.


ICT4Peace on Peace and Security in the cyberspace at Science for Peace Conference, Malaysia

ICT4Peace was invited by the Academy of Sciences Malaysia, to make a presentation on Peace and Security in the cyberspace at the International Conference on Science for Peace in Kuala Lumpur on 15 and 16 August 2016. Daniel Stauffacher’s Presentation can be found here.


Preparing for the next UN GGE: ICT4Peace at Cybersecurity Workshop in Beijing

Preparing for the next UN GGE: ICT4Peace at Cybersecurity Workshop in Beijing ICT4Peace’s Daniel Stauffacher was invited by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China and the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA), to moderate a panel at an International Workshop on Cyber Security, in Beijing, China, on 11-12 July 2016. The theme of the two-day long workshop was “ Building norms, rules or principles for cyberspace: promoting an open, secure, stable, accessible and peaceful ICT environment”. The workshop included presentations by countries, UN agencies, NGOs and academics on various topics, and presented an opportunity for senior-level officials and experts to exchange views on matters of pressing concern related to the issue of cyber security


GHDonline Project Spotlight: ORB & Open Deliver

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Join GHDonline this week (July 25-29) for a Project Spotlight on ORB & Open Deliver. Open Deliver is a process for creating, adapting, and delivering digital Read More


New app lets public help map disasters, conflicts and outbreaks

13677439224_e7c574a350_o

By Lin Taylor LONDON (Thomson Reuters Foundation) — Swiping right or tapping on a mobile phone are not typical ways of helping poor communities, but a new app launched by a medical charity on Friday aims to use technology to help aid workers map areas at risk of conflict, disasters and disease. Using the latest


Everyday Problems: Are you paying attention?

On what would have been Nelson Mandela‘s 98th birthday, today seems like a better time than any to launch a new website I’ve been working on… You shouldn’t need anyone to tell you that there were refugees long before the Syrian crisis brought their horror further into the public consciousness. There was famine before recent announcements of severe food shortages in Yemen, Malawi and Nigeria, too. And, today, with over fifty countries run by dictatorships, oppression isn’t in short supply, either. As heartening as it is to see the public response to the latest humanitarian crisis or injustice, it’s a shame that in so many cases it takes a major news event to bring a particular concept of suffering to people’s attention. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if people were always paying attention, always aware of the inequalities in the world, and always willing to help chip away at it, wherever it may be? How many of these events might never have happened if we all paid more attention and supported those working to fix their root causes


Yes, Farmers Do Use Mobile Phones for Market Prices

Farmers in Malawi had free access to market prices via mobile phones for about three months using HNI’s 3‑2‑1 Service. Usage data was rolling in. And along come two posts on ICT Works that are highly critical of the whole idea that farmers and fishermen can actually benefit from market prices provided by mobile phones. A superficial skim of these posts might lead you to conclude that “Mobile phones are not used for market prices,” or that, “Mobile phones are social tools not information delivery platforms.” But a closer read reveals something more nuanced than that. Each of these articles summarizes the findings of two of recent research reports on ICT4D


Due diligence? We need an app for that.

The ubiquity of mobile phones, the reach of the Internet, the shear number of problems facing the planet, competitions and challenges galore, pots of money and strong media interest in tech-for-good projects has today created the perfect storm. Not a day goes by without the release of an app hoping to solve something, and the fact so many people are building so many apps to fix so many problems can only be a good thing. Right? The only problem is this. It’s become impossible to tell good from bad, even real from fake


Breakfast with explorers

I’m sitting on the top deck of a 747 after British Airways kindly decided to upgrade me to First Class. After a week in Washington DC it feels like a fitting – if not fortunate – end to a crazy and hugely productive, thought-provoking few days. The main purpose of my trip was to attend the National Geographic Explorers Symposium, but that ended up being sandwiched between various meetings for the Global eHealth Foundation, a CARE International workshop, and coffee with a number of old friends and colleagues. There’s nothing like a bit of diversity in your working week.


ICT4Peace at Lions Club Zurich Metropole on Cybersecurity as an international challenge for…

ICT4Peace’s Daniel Stauffacher was invited by the Lions Club Zurich Metropole to give a presentation on 7 June 2016 on the mission of the ICT4Peace Foundation as a policy and action-oriented think tank, to promote cybersecurity and a peaceful cyberspace through international negotiations with governments, companies and non-state actors, and to champion the use of ICTs and media for Crisis management, humanitarian aid and peace building. In particular he mentioned its work since 2004 on improving crisis information management systems of the United Nations at Headquarters and in the field by using modern ICTs and new media. The Cyber-war-threat as an international challenge for states and companies was the main point of his presentation


Public Health or Politics: The Recent History of America’s Gun Epidemic and What Public…

James Michiel is an American public health technologist and writer. He holds an MPH in Epidemiology from the Boston University School of Public Health, is currently a Senior mHealth Analyst at Emory University’s Rollins School of Public Health and also serves as a Senior Technical Consultant for NCDFREE. In this brief essay, he responds to the Orlando tragedy with an examination of the impact of America’s epidemic of gun violence and how we might use Public Health and Policy to change it. On November 14, 2013, the eminently qualified Harvard physician, Dr. Vivek Murthy, was nominated by President Barack Obama to become the 19th United States Surgeon General.


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