Why ICTs particularly mobile
- To improve access to markets, financial services and employment;
- To improve access to affordable, quality services such as education and healthcare;
- To improve service delivery by governments, the private sector and NGOs, and to make these services more responsive to citizen needs;
- To improve security , emergency/disaster relief and efforts to protect human rights;
- To support improvements in accountability, transparency and participation by allowing citizens to publicise their concerns, share ideas, and hold governments to account;
- Technology is an important education tool for large, dispersed, low-income populations with limited budgets.
- Mobile phones create more than 5 billion human touch points around the world. In the developing world, mobile cellular penetration rates had reached 68% at the end of 2010.
- Between 2000 and 2008, the rate of growth in mobile penetration was fastest in Sub Saharan Africa.
- Waves of liberalisation in mobile networks has led to 87% of the world’s mobile markets being either partly or fully liberalised.
- Competition among mobile operators has resulted in the rapid extension of mobile networks, falling prices of services and mobile handsets, and innovative business models.
- Given efficient markets, it is estimated that by 2015, only 4.4% of populations across Africa will live in the “coverage gap” - people with no telecoms access.
Kencall is a farmer’s helpline established in Kenya, that provides cheap advice to farmers about farming and livestock strategies. 43% of Kencall’s users have no other means of accessing expert advice.
The e-seva project in Andhra Pradesh, India provides more than one hundred services, ranging from the payment of utility bills to the registration of motor vehicles.
Ushahidi allows citizens to report on any incident – from violence to essential medicine stockouts – have it mapped, aggregated and publicised.
Esoko is an market information exchange that allows annyone to distribute or collect market information over their mobile phone. With up to date information from across the country, businesses and individuals can access prices, browse offers to buy or sell, or advertise their own products and services.
Why you should attend?
- Governments looking to learn from policy and programme success in other countries;
- Investors and funders looking for evidence based results and opportunities to scale solutions that generate both social and financial returns;
- NGOs looking for innovative ideas to strengthen existing projects - looking for the secrets of scale;
- Corporations interested in quantifying the opportunity at the base of the pyramid and strategies for tapping into its potential;
- Social entrepreneurs looking for the partnerships and investment necessary to take successful pilots to scale;
- Researchers seeking evidence of impact to demonstrate the value of mobile phones on the lives of the poor.
“Over three-quarters of the world’s poor live in rural areas with the majority depending on agriculture for their livelihoods. Improving outcomes for the rural poor depends on increasing agricultural productivity, linking better to markets, improving rural infrastructure, and facilitating off-farm employment.” - World Bank 2010
- Populations are ill-equipped in terms of infrastructure;
- Economic opportunities and financial services are limited. They are still largely based on agriculturebut there is some diversification with remittances becoming increasingly important;
- Social services such as health and education can be up to 10 times more difficult and costly for rural access compared to urban populations;
- Rural populations are at greater risk of "shocks";
- Transparency and accountability of public service delivery is harder to track.
Only 29% of roads in Sub-Saharan Africa are paved
Only 25% of the population has access to electricity
There are fewer than 3 landlines available per 100 people.