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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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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.


Data management architecture, University Hospital Haiti

(no abstract available)(Published: 7 June 2016)Citation: Glob Health Action 2016, 9: 32195 – http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/gha.v9.32195


ICT4Peace on G7 Principles and Actions on Cyber: “Give Peace a Chance”

The G7 summit meeting hosted by Japan May 26-27 2016 issued a document entitled “G7 Principles and Actions on Cyber”. The text contains strong commitments in the field of human rights, but it also highlights the challenge of achieving international cooperation on cyber security against a backdrop of deteriorating geopolitical relations between leading cyber and military powers. In this crucial realm of international cyber security, which acts as an enabler for much of the socio-economic benefits to be derived from the Internet, the pronouncements from the G7 summit are not all that reassuring


A Six-Point Plan for Change

Late last year I was in South Africa attending Buntwani 2015. As always, it was great meeting new people and catching up with old friends. Sadly, some of those old ‘friends’ included many of the issues we seem to continually face in the development sector, issues which don’t seem to ever want to go away. I wrote about this in “Retweet, recycle, repeat” and “What to do when the yelling stops?” recently. One of the sessions I proposed was aimed at kickstarting discussion around some of these historical issues


Study on countering violent extremism and terrorism online, freedom of expression and the right…

The ICT4Peace Foundation was invited to participate in a validation meeting around a study, led by UN Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights (OHCHR) and the Geneva Academy on countering violent extremism and terrorism online, freedom of expression and the right to privacy. The full day meeting was held on 25th May 2016 at the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights, Villa Moynier, Geneva. Sanjana Hattotuwa represented the Foundation at the meeting.


How do we prevent suicide? Listen up.

Jacob and Chloe from NCDFREE’s Copenhagen team share highlights from the recent NCDFREE Copenhagen Long Lunch on Suicide Prevention. NCDFREE’s Long Lunch series bring emerging and established leaders from a variety of disciplines together to address a particular health issues relevant to non-communicable disease action and advocacy.  Every 40 seconds someone dies by suicide. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO) this is the second leading cause of death among 15-29 year olds globally. Suicide takes an enormous toll on individuals, families, communities and our health system. It is a serious global health problem – but in spite of these horrifying numbers, suicide is still a taboo with many myths and misunderstandings surrounding it.


Using short-message-service notification as a method to improve acute flaccid paralysis…

High quality acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) surveillance is required to maintain polio-free status of a country.


What to do when the yelling stops?

I’m reading two books in parallel right now – Ben Ramalingam‘s ‘Aid on the Edge of Chaos‘ and Kentaro Toyama‘s ‘Geek Heresy‘. With both books I’m finding myself regularly pausing for a nod of approval or a wry smile. Both books are spot on in their identification of the issues – Ben in global development more broadly, and Kentaro in ICT4D, a sector/field/discipline/specialism of global development. A while back when Bill Easterly published his ‘Tyranny of Experts‘ I started to wonder what impact his previous book – ‘The White Man’s Burden‘ – has had on the practice and policy of global development.


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