Africa

The Case for Connectivity (part 1)

As with most CEOs of younger companies, I find myself on the investment raising treadmill. Doing so for a company focused on internet connectivity in frontier markets provides an extra layer of complexity, since it’s not a sexy of a proposition as a new app for ecommerce, agtech, fintech, etc might be.

Affordability and the Future of the Internet

The first few decades of the internet has been about getting the signal everywhere. The current decade is about making the internet affordable to everyone. The internet will be free, and the future belongs to those with the courage to create and fund the business models that support creating an onramp for that last blue ocean of internet users.

Reflection on 5 Years of BRCK

It was 5 years ago that we created BRCK as a company, and I’ve had the great joy of being on a journey with some fantastic people, including the three here with me in this picture (Reg Orton, Emmanuel Kala, and Philip Walton).

Inveneo Launches New Rural Connectivity Project in Liberia with USAID

Inveneo, a Silicon Valley nonprofit that works to increase Internet connectivity in the developing world, is pleased to announce its newest project in partnership with USAID. Inveneo has been contracted by USAID to expand affordable, sustainable, and reliable rural Internet connections throughout Liberia, which was tragically hit with an Ebola outbreak starting in 2014.

An African TV White Space Strategy

TV  White Space (TVWS) technology and regulation has its roots in the United States in the early 2000’s where there was an emerging sense of the growing impact of wireless technologies designed for unlicensed (ISM band) use as well as a recognition that manufacturing costs were coming down substantially.  Low-power use of unused guard bands in the VHF and UHF television frequencies seemed to ho

Dynamic Spectrum in Africa in 2018

Advocating for change in spectrum regulation is not a game for sprinters.  As someone who has championed dynamic spectrum regulation for a longer than I would ever have imagined, I am still getting used to the idea that what looks like the finish line, may just be the start of a another lap.

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.

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?”

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.

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.

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