Africa

Losing my religion

It is with a little sadness – but great excitement – that I write this, my last-ever kiwanja.net blog post. As from today the site will no longer receive updates as I take on a new full-time role at Yoti, a London-based startup, as its Head of Social Impact. It needed a special opportunity to take such a leap, and that’s exactly what I got.

Why we need more anthropologists

Today I’m back at the University of Edinburgh talking to anthropology students about how I’ve used my degree in my global technology/development career.

Back in the game

Yes, I’m back looking for my next big opportunity. For context start below, for the details head to the bottom of this post.

Implementation Support to The PICES Survey In Zimbabwe

PICES was a survey conducted by the Zimbabwe National Statistics agency in the year 2011/12. It stands for Poverty Income and Expenditure Survey from June 2011 to May 2012. The survey released data on poverty, income distribution etc. You can check out more information on the survey compiled by IHSN.

Africa Telecoms Infrastructure in 2017

Welcome to the 4th annual review of telecommunications infrastructure development in Africa. This is the first year I have managed to get the Africa Telecoms Infrastructure Review out in a truly timely manner, perhaps that bodes well for my taxes too. The review contains links to 140 news articles on telecom development in Africa in 2017.

An experiment in giving: Part II

“If enough people are willing to give a modest amount without worrying too much about the guarantees most charities think they need and want, how much more good can be done? How many more people might give? What might this mean for the future of personal, charitable giving?”

Stop killing protesters, including those protesting violence against protesters!

This morning, Twitter offered me a video of my friend Boniface Mwangi getting shot point blank with a tear gas container, leading to a hematoma. The irony of assaulting a man who was leading a peaceful march against police violence while wearing a t-shirt that read “Stop Killing Us” seems to have been lost on Kenyan authorities.

An experiment in giving

Last week I popped over to Paris to take part in a short UNESCO Working Group meeting. After arriving mid-evening on the Eurostar, I decided to walk the one hour or so to my hotel. There’s no better way of seeing a city. Among the usual sites I gradually became more and more aware of the number of young families – refugees – begging on the streets.

Africa Telecoms Infrastructure in 2016

Welcome to the 3rd annual review of telecommunications infrastructure development in Africa.  A bit like my taxes this year, this review is coming a bit late but is still relevant, especially in the context of the previous reviews helping to frame the arc of change of the last three years.  The review contains links to over 120 news articles on telecom development in Africa in 2016.

Doing good? Or do-gooder?

We all like to think our work makes a difference, even if we’re not really sure if it does. I’m well known for ‘doing good in the world’ yet even I question what that really means, or who precisely where might be better off in some way because of my chosen career path. For many people, feeling like they’re doing good is likely enough. For me, it’s not.

One last throw of the dice.

I’ve always found the global development system frustrating. It was the 1980’s when it first got my attention, with suffering and extreme poverty dominating my daily news feed.

Eugene L. Lawler Award for our work in mobile

A couple of weeks ago I received the surprising (and wonderful) news that I had been selected as the latest recipient of the Eugene L. Lawler Award for Humanitarian Contributions within Computer Science. The Award is given by the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) every two years to a group or individual who has made a significant contribution through the use of computing technology.

Save the date: South Africa to host Forum on Internet Freedom in Africa, 27-29 September 2017

JOHANNESBURG
21 April 2017
(APC for APCNews)

FIFAfrica convenes various stakeholders from the internet governance and online rights arenas

Mapping the Unserved

As connectivity becomes increasingly valuable to everyone, access to communication is becoming as important as access to other kinds of basic infrastructure.  As a result there is an increased urgency to make affordable communication infrastructure accessible to ALL citizens.

The Failure of Spectrum Auctions in Africa

Spectrum auctions are widely regarded as “best practice” in the assignment of wireless frequencies where demand exceed availability yet, as of 2013  among African countries, only Nigeria had successfully conducted a spectrum auction.

Turning point.

I remember that morning well. A week or so earlier I’d been informed via a random phone call that a group of Nigerians would be monitoring their forthcoming Presidential elections using FrontlineSMS.

The end of a golden age of discovery?

Exactly six years ago this week I was in Washington DC to collect the Pizzigati Prize for Software in the Public Interest, and award given each year to an individual who has created or led an effort to create an open source software product of significant value to the non

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