Coop 2.0 interview: Jan Blom

This post is part of a series of interviews collected at this years conference Coop 2.0 in Gijon.

Jan Blom works at Nokia Research in Bangalore, India and formerly helped to build up Nokia Design Studio there. He is leading a team of nomadic researchers which try to understand the ways users use their mobile devices.

Hear him talk about his personal background of social sciences and HCI and his work at Nokia Design Studio.

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Coop 2.0 interview: Jan Blom
was published on 26.06.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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Investing in Broadband Infrastructure for Economic Stimulus and Growth – notes

Notes from the World Bank workshop “Investing in Broadband Infrastructure for Economic Stimulus and Growth” in Washington.

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Welcome and Introductions

Melanie Marlette, Country Manager for Moldova, World Bank

Topic: What is the potential for broadband investment for economic stimulus and growth?

New initiative: Moldova – eDevelopment thematic group

  • Wants to partner with government, private sector, …

Oleg Rotaru, Deputy Minister, Ministry of Information Development, Moldova

Initiative is very efficient and useful for the government of Moldova

Moldovo is currently developing a national strategy for ICT for development

  • not only with private companies
  • also government structures
  • not only at broadband level
  • new generation of services – also implementing eScience, eSociety, … in Moldova
  • broadband is prerequisite

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Opening Remarks

Philippe Dongier, Manager, Global ICT, World Bank

Recent World Bank study – relation between access to broadband and economic growth

  • increasing access to broadband by 10% increases economic growth by 1.3%
  • for high income economies as well as low income economies

agressive broadband structures

Finland: aim = access of 100% of population to connections with 100 MB/sec

Recent trend – public-private partnerships

  • private sector makes investment
  • public sector creating incentives, providing legal framework and supporting private sector

Martin Raiser, Country Director for Belarus, Moldova, and Ukraine, World Bank

Melanie Marlette, Country Manager for Moldova, World Bank

Questions:

  • How can countries with significant budget deficits invest in broadband programs?
  • What is the rationale for continued investment?
  • What are you currently spending and what is required to catch up with Western Europe?
  • What role is there for the private sector?

Belarus:

  • Concerning the study linking economic growth and broadband access – how did you define the demand for these services? Sometimes people aren’t aware that they want the service. Furthermore: did you look at the relation between private and public services?

Russia:

  • The state offers the infrastructure backbone, the private sector offers the content – e.g. eBusiness. However, nothing can happen over night – rural areas are still in need for infrastructure, which can be accomplished by national public programs. Generally: what is the unit of measurement of broadband access – considering different structures in the countres?

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Overview

Juan Navas-Sabater, Senior ICT Policy Specialist, Global ICT, World Bank

Boadband investment in the context of economic stimulus

What are countries doing for the economic recovery?

  • e.g. Corea invested heavily in broadband infrastructure -> much bigger growth after the crisis
  • ICT industry can generate employment
  • ICT can raise productivity

What are countries doing in response to the crisis?

  • Many are spending in infrastructure
  • The amount of money spend is very different in different countries
  • Especially countries from the OECD invest in broadband – increase level of service for existing services, reach out to the ones not benefitting so far
  • Could be a good policy for developing countres

What is the World Bank doing?

  • INFRA initiative – Infrastructure Recovery and Assets
  • Fundraising activities

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The Role of Broadband Investments in Economic Recovery

Taylor Reynolds, Communications Analyst and Economist, OECD

Original presentation can be downloaded here

2 questions:

Can communication infrastructure investment be used as an effective economic stimulus?

If governments decide to invest, how can they structure projects for maximum benefit?

During crisis we are interested in quick demand stimulus

Why network investments?

  • core network investments (roads, airports, electricity) have significant impact on economic productivity
  • impact on demand (projects are labour intensive & can be started quick) and supply (foundation for commerce)

Goals

  • Stimulate the economy on demand side through construction projects for infrastructure rollout
  • Increase the productive capacity of the economy via spillovers from broadband networks
  • Bridge the digital divide and improve competition

How public funds are being used for broadband

  • broadband pretty similar to roads
  • high/middle/low capacity networks
  • all three different sectors should be considered

Fibre optics serve for all types of broadband internet access

1 fibre strand the thickness of human hair can hold 3 billion simultaneous phone calls

Policy and investment

  • regulatory frameworks are substantial when investing in broadband
  • couple with pro-competitive regulations
  • it’s vital to couple policy and investment

Case: Mexico

  • Goal: bringing broadband to all people, opening up national markets
  • Problem: lacking policy

Telecom investment with limited funds

  • Search for most efficient way to invest in
  • Specific bottlenecks: Policies for competition in the market, backhaul networks to lay the foundation, providing schools and government buildings with networks, then sharing with the private sector – public private partnerships

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Country Case Study: Spain

Cristóbal Guzmán López, Vocal Asesor de la Unidad de Apoyo – Dirección General para el Desarrollo de la Sociedad de la Información, Spain

Avanza plan to develop the information society and ICT sector in Spain

  • started in 2005
  • Plan Avanza 2 started in 2009
  • legislative measures with a specific budget
  • also other stakeholders – private public partnership

Four lines

  • Digital public services – 70% public services available online
  • Digital citizenship – 24 mio citizens connected to internet, eId card
  • Digital economy – 2760 ICT R&D projects in companies
  • Digital context – 99% broadband coverage

Difficulties

  • Difficulties for complete availability
  • Geographic causes (mountains, dispersed population, high rural poulation)
  • -> one of the highest costs in Europe to reach all the population

Incentives for private sector and regions in Spain to invest in broadband

  • resulting in broadband access of 99%

Broadband in the EU

  • seen as key importance for economic growth
  • EU average: 23%, big differences between countries
  • there’s a big gap between rural and urban areas

New EU BB initiative

  • effective usage rather than coverage

Precondition for developing countries to benefit from broadband

  • regulatory framework
  • public-private partnerships
  • competitive environment

Overall Avanza Plan was a big success and perfectly in tune with the EU goals

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Commentary

Tim Kelly, Lead ICT Policy Specialist, infoDev/World Bank

World Bank will release ICT4D report next week

  • 10% increase in broadband results in 1.38% in GDP
  • better than other technologies

It’s important to understand the Korean case – what the key factors are that made their investment so succesful

Another project of World Bank currently: creating a broadband toolkit

Questions to Spain and the OECD

  • Is broadband a public or a private good?
  • Broadband can be seen as a platform for access to other public goods – which is one of the main arguments for investing in it; also offers a platform for green, low carbon growth
  • What is the most appropriate level of investment?
  • What percentage of sums should be investments in different sectors of broadband infrastructure?
  • Low gap in Spain between rural/urban areas – is that a natural phenomenon in Spain?

Q & A

Belarus

  • How do you calculate broadband coverage, what methodology is used?

Russia

  • It’s the same discussion as 10 years ago with the internet “just invest in internet and all your problems will be solved” – but this didn’t hold true.

USA

  • Is Open Access already practiced in OECD countries?
  • What is the incentive for open access in a monopolistic environent?

Moldova

  • Who should the infrastructure belong to? Private companies or the country? How to solve the monopoly problem?

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Tayler Reynolds

  • Divergence in stimulus package – what is the best practice? We don’t really know because most countries didn’t provide numbers how they structured their investment. There is no one-size-fits all.
  • Eastern Europe? Any infrastructure investment has synergies with other infrastructure investments. Broadband is just one piece in the puzzle.
  • What percentage to the backhaul & last mile access? Depends on the circumstances, push the fibre network as close to people as you can.
  • Investing in internet was supposed to solve all your problems? It will not solve all of your problems – broadband is an important infrastructure alongside electricity, roads, …
  • Open access? To us it means non-discriminatory access to a network – competitive access. In some cases that involves infrastructure sharing.

Spain

Spain is holding the next presidency of the EU – the issue of broadband investment is on the agenda

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Conclusion

Some thoughts

  • Consider bundling when creating the broadband infrastructure so companies don’t have to dig up the street again
  • Stimulus packages mostly on backbone and open access infrastructures if there are limited financial funds
  • Promote digital literacy and eGovernment with the government as an enabler to foster private investment
  • There’s growing interest in the topic, countries have to learn from each other
  • Russia: it’s vital to ensure the content which has to be put in the network, not just about extending the network capacity; this capacity will improve anyway – demand driven; more emphasis on the service side – not so much on broadband access

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Investing in Broadband Infrastructure for Economic Stimulus and Growth – notes
was published on 22.06.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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Investing in Broadband Infrastructure for Economic Stimulus and Growth

Once more our partner – the eDevelopment Thematic Group of the World Bank – will have a workshop in the context of their Government Transformation initiative.

It deals with Investing in Broadband Infrastructure as Part of Fiscal Stimulus Programs and the surrounding questions – what’s the reason for such investments, what are the outcomes and how can it be implemented. The case of Spain – which is also a big player in the ICT4D field due to my subjective judgement – will be presented.

Read a longer introduction at the event page.

The workshop will take place in Washington again, but also be broadcasted over the web.

What: Investing in Broadband Infrastructure for Economic Stimulus and Growth

Where: Washington DC, also available via webcast

When: 22 June, 15:00 Vienna time

ICT4D.at will of course cover the event on Twitter and here on the blog.

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Investing in Broadband Infrastructure for Economic Stimulus and Growth
was published on 20.06.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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Coop 2.0 interview: Stéphane Boyera

This post is part of a series of interviews collected at this years conference Coop 2.0 in Gijon.

Stéphane Boyera has been working with the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) – the internet standardization consortium – since it was founded in 1995 and has been leading the Mobile Web for Social Development initiative there since 2006.

Hear him talk about his work at W3C and the role of ICTs, especially the mobile phone, for development.

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Paper: Strengthening citizen agency through ICT: an extrapolation for Eastern Africa

This is the summary of the paper “Strengthening citizen agency through ICT: an extrapolation for Eastern Africa” by Giacomo Zanello and Paul Maassen

It deals with ICT in support to citizen agency which includes to involve & inform communities and interact with and influence authorities

The paper focuses on what is already happening and where the potentials lie – how can active citizens interact with society & authorities with the use of ICT tools

The geographical area covered is Eastern Africa (Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda)

The research is based on an open questionnaire by Hivos

Key questions:

  • Which conditions enable citizen agency in developing countries?
  • How can ICT support citizen agency in order to influence the authorities?
  • Based on technological projections, how will ICT support the efficiency and effectiveness of citizen agency in 5 years time?

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Summary:

Civil society: seen as essential actor for promoting democracy in developing countries

Citizen agency: broader definition of civil society including NGOs, labour & student unions, …

The main reason why new ICT can help citizen agency

  • Bi- (or multi-) directional tools
  • Real time

The two main uses of ICT

  • Information and monitoring of authorities
  • Organize citizen actions

Examples for information and monitoring

  • Ushahidi: crowd-sourcing information on incidents and violence
  • Bunge SMS: tool to report to members of the parliament about the actions of the local government
  • Behind the mask: communication initiative for LGBTI activists
  • Global Voices Online: participatory news platform for developing countries
  • Mzalendo.com: volunteer run project to keep an eye on the Kenyan parliament
  • Jamiiforums.com: East African platform for debates on various issues

Examples for organization

  • Dgroups.org: provides groups working in international development with email lists and webspace
  • Tactical Tech: international NGO providing human rights advocates with consultancy, tools, trainings & toolkits to increase the impact of their campaigns
  • FrontlineSMS: free software to turn a mobile with a modem into a communications hub
  • Nabuur: links online volunteers with local communities

Generally there is a big and vibrant civil society in East Africa and ICTs have huge potentials to assist these initiatives to reach their aim

It is no longer a question of technology – as technology is already there – but imagination, adaptability and time

The key is not complex devices, but usable and easy to understand technology – therefore it is important to focus on grass roots development instead of importing solutions

The prerequisites for a spread of ICTs in the next 5 years are

  • Energy – there is a need for alternative sources of energy such as solar power
  • Connectivity – the forecast in this study predicts a rise to about 70% coverage in Eastern Africa
  • Literacy – easy to use systems, voice command and local languages in applications can overcome the current problems
  • Income – new devices will cost less and be therefore better affordable

Another vital prerequisite is the need to find out about the desired use of ICTs for East African citizens – technology has to address the needs of the people

Therefore an interdisciplinary approach including anthropology would be useful

As seen above, for democracy and transparency ICTs have large potentials – including citizen journalism or election watch

The challenges of ICT in the near future are twofold

  • Networking between people with similar goals and for sharing experiences on a national or even global level
  • Give voice for global leaders and visionaries to give them visibility and connectivity

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The original article Strengthening citizen agency through ICT: an extrapolation for Eastern Africa

I think the article is a good overview over the issues of civil society initiatives in East Africa in particular and the conclusions and predictions of it can even be extended to a larger geographical area.

It is once again underlined that real innovation always comes from bottom-up and ICT can release huge potentials when meeting the needs of the people.

I also definitely support the call for more interdisciplinary research on the ground to find out the real needs of the people – combined with collaborating with grass roots initiatives and empowering people by giving them possibilities to access to the world and connect with like-minded people.

I feel like the international research scene has given up the top-down approach already a while ago – but still there are way too many projects out there preaching not fitting imported solutions to citizens in developing countries and driving them into dependence of Western assistance.

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Paper: Strengthening citizen agency through ICT: an extrapolation for Eastern Africa
was published on 17.06.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under east africa
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ICTs for Women’s Empowerment

Notes from the World Bank workshop “ICTs for Women’s Empowerment” in Washington.

Detailed CVs of the speakers

Samia Melhem, Senior Operations Officer

ICTs are a great equalizer, they allow people to reach places and profit from services they would have never profited without them

Promoting women employment is also an economic factor – doing things differently – e.g. women project leaders, women teachers, …

also in IT policy making – diversity and variety makes decision more successful

they have also different information needs than men – but more men are producing (internet) content

Nilufar Ahmad, Senior Gender Specialist

why is gender important in the infrastructure sector?

  • Sri Lanka – cybercafes have turned into “young men’s” club, where women don’t go to
  • they don’t feel comfortable
  • solution: cybercafe in a temple, women could use it
  • would not be possible in Pakistan of Afghanistan

in infrastructure projects such effects should be kept in mind

women and men don’t have the same power, they don’t have the same needs

Claudia Morrell, CEO, Multinational Development of Women in Technology

strong focus on access when discussing gender inequalities

for women there are barriers in access – you have to ask what the barriers are to address them

literacy is important – do you speak the language the content is in? is there localized content?

women know what content might be interesting for women

women know what design is fitting for women

another key point: access to leadership, women are often excluded from careers

NGO capacity – who drives big, important issues forward in the developing world, where the civil society is not as strong as in the Western World?

Nistha Sinha, Economist, PRMGE

Gender is an important topic

solid evidence base is vital for policy recommendations

it’s important to know your data source and what it tells you

Q & A

how do you think should international organizations address ICT and gender problems connected to people being victims of the international crisis – shouldn’t be saving them from dying be a bigger issue?

  • of course surviving is more important, but ICT literacy can also be a big benefit in such a situation; any infrastructure can help save the population – streets, watter supply, as well as ICT – providing possibility to get a job

there is not enough data right now about indicators concerning gender – or does the panel know about a indicator framework? or is anybody working on that?

  • there is no universal framework the World Bank has adopted
  • figuring out the indicators is important and is still lacking
  • it’s also vital to know what to do with the indicators – how to use them

why is there not enough support on security in the context of projects? is there a thought ensuring security so that the work becomes sustainable?

  • of course security is a substantial issue and needs to be looked after; generally projects in the development context need to shift their focus towards sustainability which also involves security

recommendation: number one issue for global corporation currently is (out)sourcing and finding the perfect workforce for their needs, so inject the private sector business with your views that women in ICTs have large potentials; what is the communication with the private sector to assist and collaborate on the topic?

  • demand for it is increasing – also in developing countries, see example of India
  • the comment is valuable and maybe it is possible to create a set of advice what to put in the report to address these topics

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ICTs for Women’s Empowerment
was published on 16.06.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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Financial Crisis and Cloud Computing – Country and Industry perspectives, closing remarks

Notes from the World Bank workshop on “Financial Crisis and Cloud Computing” in Washington.

Country Perspectives

Armenia

  • Founding a new network for enhanced usage – financed be government in partnership with the World Bank
  • Youth involvement is very important, social networks have to be integrated
  • There is a lot of scientific potential for the cloud

Belarus

  • Has a cloud infrastructure already
  • Provides infrastructure as a service – for education and SME startups
  • When getting funding from World Bank & partnership with technology companies, Belarus is ready to participate

Sri Lanka

  • In the process of moving government services to an already existing data centre and subsequently to the cloud
  • But now all applications, only certain ones
  • The potential for the government is enormous

Russia

  • issues with data security when outsourcing services
  • several areas for using the cloud – electronic government interchange systems, digital documents
  • if you have services prepared for the cloud then it will be easy to switch there
  • in the future the complexity of infrastructure will be too high to keep it inside -> switching to cloud computing

Tanzania

  • moving currently from the 19th to the 21st century
  • using the cloud is a big opportunity – just as mobile phones for healthcare
  • the opportunities for using IT are going to grow tremendously due to the new backbone which will arrive soon; also a new super computer will be installed in Tanzania soon
  • the economies of scale that cloud computing offers are really unique

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Industry Perspectives: Panel Discussion

Dan Burton (Salesforce.com)

Start with the idea – every consumer was using the web, no use for buying hardware & training & upgradin, it just works

but the companies didn’t do that – but why?

Salesforce offers services for many companies, it just works, the have seen that it’s easy, cheap and flexible

perspectives are that in the future 25% of all software sold are cloud computing services

Also interesting for governments and NGOs

Example: site for one week with 10 mil hits, then turned off – no problem

Salesforce understands security and privacy concerns – but we meet international security standards

Advice: not “I put all of my data in the cloud” -> but incremental approach, trying out

Data centres are a huge expense – cloud computing means outsourcing this expense to the internet

Rizwan Khaliq (IBM)

There’s a lot of discussion about technology – but it should be a discussion “what is the value of cloud computing”

The government shouldn’t need to be concerned about buying 10 new servers

Data privacy and security shouldn’t be a reason not to do something – it should be an issue of course

It’s useful for governments to buy services, not hardware – so they can concentrate on their core competencies – that’s what cloud computing is offering

IBM is heavily financing in the microfinance world

Cloud computing offers developing countries the possibility to come to the 21st century very quickly

Andres Escobero (SUN)

Can public services be provided by cloud computing? Yes – they may even benefit from that

Which services can be put to the cloud without any security and privacy concerns?

What is the role of the World Bank?

  • Training
  • Can facilitate the clustering of interested entities in a country -> good for the economy

Vendor lock-in – with using open standards & open source this can be avoided

Cloud computing can be used in the scientific community – countries don’t need to invest huge amounts of money for the infrastructure

How can local communities benefit? The government has to create the conditions for infrastructure as a service – so local companies exploit that service

Noah Sandidge (Microsoft)

Microsoft philiosophy: software + services

customers should have choice what hey want to use

for governments – doesn’t have to be a public cloud, maybe also private

start with the best possible infrastructure

vital: fixed, granted SLAs

withough the expertise it’s not a good idea to create, maintain, … a data centre – it may turn into a big money pit

important points

  • implement
  • security
  • standards

Calvin Tu (Oracle), by phone

cloud computing has a lot of value – more and more on the commercial side, but also for governments

security, availabilty of service is important for customers – they ask: is it proven?

cloud computing and software as a service are convenient – but it doesn’t mean you should take all your operations to the cloud

it should be a complement to your overall IT strategy

Q & A

Tanzania

  • The companies which are providing free services on the cloud  – is there a problem with sustainability in developing countres – as there are only few people consuming there?

Twitter

  • Are there plans to build cloud computing datacenters in developing country regions too?
  • Why country perspectives and not regional perspectives?

Audience

  • Open approach – how do we assure that openness will be continued with cloud computing?
  • Portability – is there anybody working on a framework for that?

Free services – the private industry is not in the business to provide free services, but has to have ROI; public private partnerships may be a way to move things forward; the government should provide these services to their citizens – also by partnerships with private sector

Location of data centres – the customer is always right – if they want it at some country the company will build it; from a technological perspective that makes no sense; because of service requirements it is necessary to spread data centres over several regions;

Openness – now, with every platform it’s possible to use every application, the cloud should also give the possibility for that; porting the services is hard but companies are working on that; an entrance and exit strategy is necessary before deciding to use a vertain vendor;

Vendor lock in is not different with cloud computing that with regular systems

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Closing remarks

Philippe Dongier, Sector Manager, Global ICT Department, World Bank

Consensus – great potentials

Using the cloud – using a more compentent provider for services

Risks – start with a low-risk application and see how it goes

Standards – are in development

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Financial Crisis and Cloud Computing – Opening session & Global overview

Notes from the World Bank workshop on “Financial Crisis and Cloud Computing” in Washington.

Opening Session

Welcome: Philippe Dongier, Sector Manager, Global ICT Department, World Bank

World Bank is very much learning about cloud computing – it’s one of the three big topics in the initiative for government transformation

Security is a big issue here, Jerry has a lot of experience and will tell us more

Opening Remarks: Jerry Horton, Chief Information Officer, USAID

cloud computing is very much about infrastructure – CIO view

users look at it as data center and virtualisation of information

in this context for governments there are risks, but there are a lot of opportunities in cloud computing

USAID has a long tradition in IT projects around the world

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Global Overview and Lessons from Implementers

Drue Reeves, Research Director for Cloud Computing, Burton Group

cloud computing will change the way we do business, cost models, lots of issues, it’s overhyped

trust and security are clear issues

cloud computing is coming – and now is the time to prepare

IT is finally catching up with the internet

business and IT are becoming one

companies cannot afford anymore to build such big infrastructure

  • traditional IT is too expensive
  • traditional IT is not flexible enough – installation, maintenance, …
  • traditional IT is too complex

typically: companies have their own data centres

future: most critical data, most critical services are kept internal

cloud computing – on demand, scalable, elastic service

cloud appears infinite in scale to the consumer

cost is connected to usage, not to infrastructure

companies will use the cloud in different ways – on software as well as on hardware level

cloud computing

  • simplifies and optimizes IT
  • on demand model
  • vendors and trainers in cloud computing are highly professional

on the other hand

  • vendor lock in
  • the service is somewhere in the cloud
  • the vendors don’t tell what the infrastructure look like
  • if something is wrong it’s hard to find out what

the more similar your own infrastructure and the cloud are, the easier to move it

partnering between developing countries building their data centre

not all applications are ready to move to the cloud

what about quality of service? some vendors don’t provide that

your data may move to a different country

Bob Bennett, CEO of Family Service Agency of San Francisco

NGO in San Francisco with multiple funding sources

three requirements for NGOs

  • make profit
  • meet your funders requirements
  • manage your client service

big challenge in 2004

  • no money
  • no infrastructure
  • few computers
  • not much knowledge about IT

solution: automating the treatment records -> Salesforce

  • rapid development environment
  • robust & scalable
  • tailored for all the services
  • possibility to interact with other organizations

we own our own customization for the critical data – for the core application there are specialists, anything can be 100% customized

everybody has a unique set of dashbords

overall the productivity increased by around 50%

the attitude to not work very much was changed, because productivity became more transparent


the system allows to track how the services are performing and to react immediately

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Commentary by Randeep Sudan, Leader of e-Government Practice, Global ICT Department, World Bank (TBC)

cloud computing in the context of developing countries

most important aspect – infrastructure for cloud computing, broadband

a lot of developing countries don’t have that in place

how are developing countries managing their data

US is very open with their data – data.gov

it would be a great thing to put this data in the cloud and make it machine readable – even in developing country

data centres are a good idea for countries to start with cloud computing

one approach is also to leverage private-public partnerships

often government worry about privacy

new approaches – citizen data is controlled by the citizens, they decide who can access what

maybe citizens find it easier to put the data in the cloud

skills that are required in IT are different to skills required for the cloud – governments should start looking into that

also universities in developing countries should provide hands on experience with cloud computing

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Commentary by John Wille, Lead PSD Specialist, Investment Climate Advisory Services World Bank Group

mostly involved in implementing G2B services

cloud computing has great potentials to leapfrog traditional models of data storage and maintenance

particular in least developed countries there are many obstacles for cloud computing, some countries even now put services online for the first time

but the infrastructure development right now is enabling some countries to take advantage of these new services

the World Bank is required to take a more holistic attitude in terms of deploying services

there are a number of possibilities emerging for the Bank – e.g. connect isolated initiatives

what do we need to make cloud computing reality?

  • products & applications
  • portability to allow customers to move between vendors
  • model for a national setting
  • private-public partnerships

we need to understand how this is going to change the way we do business

.

Q & A

Armenia:

  • interested in projects connected with use – are there projects which use the cloud?
  • maybe the youth could be more interested as they are faster in adapting new technologies
  • is bad internet connection a serious obstacle for cloud computing?

Belarus:

  • will World Bank continue working with Belarus
  • are there special methodologies information security for cloud computing so there is no risk for critical information – and how to tell if information is really critical or not
  • what methods can be offered in the cloud to increase efficiency in government processes, how can you ensure that the capacities are not more as we need – increased costs
  • what cloud computing services can be proposed for the scientific area?

Russia:

  • are there standards for cloud computing?
  • are there any examples of how the state can create the infrastructure for cloud computing?

Sri Lanka:

  • has there been an evaluation concerning the legal infrastructure?
  • how about portability and interoperability between vendors?
  • what about security issues when data moves between different countries?

Tanzania:

  • how was it possible to persuade the Liberia government to bundle their forces?

Twitter:

  • How can Youth-oriented projects connected to cloud leverage mobile technology?

.

  • Youth – has to be fetched where they already are – Facebook, …,  also let them use it at the workplace, encourage them to try it out
  • University – services that are available are used
  • Belarus – will definitely be supported further
  • Information security – there’s not zero risk, but security may be better than in traditional infrastructure because data is aĺways in motion; it’s possible for people to crazy about imagined threats – so it’s a good idea to start with applications with lower security risk and see how it goes;
  • Standardization – differs at each level, where we’re missing standards is at the Software as a Service level; currently there are no standards for data security
  • Examples of solutions in developing countries – mostly in the private sector; in the next session there will be a talk on that concerning microfinance
  • Examples of states interventions to provide infrastructure – new term: government as a service, government in Korea has invested in huge data centres, can be used not only at national level; the US helped funding the Dow Jones – cloud computing should work the same way;
  • Legal dimension – private sector & financial institutions are controlled by national rules;
  • Vendor locking – almost impossible to avoid vendor lock in; controlling the data (geographically) depends on the service level agreement & negotiations with the vendor;
  • How critical is the internet connectivity – mobile communication is used as a way around, a lot of initiatives to provide connectivity will be critial to make the technology available; good software design can overcome limited broadband
  • Bottleneck between government, cloud, provider -
  • What kind of capacity does one need – you gain a level of efficiency by moving to the cloud; just going into the cloud

Questions and comments from the audience

Data centres are very hard to build – promise of cloud computing is that you don’t need a data centre;

of course there are security concern, but it’s just too hard and expensive to build an own data centre

there is no upfront investment in cloud computing

Should the worldbank provide a cloud to developing countries or create an environment where private sector would do that?

  • This service should lie in the domain of the countries, not the bank

How does the San Francisco NGO experience translate to developing countries?

  • The only big difference was the connectivity issue, otherwise the experience is highly relevant

Are there SLA templates online which help governments?

  • It’s kind of a Wild West now, still it’s about everybody to organize their security

private clouds is not an aim and it’s not always necessary to keep control of your own data – it’s better to provide public clouds and have good regulations;

the bigger your scale, the more going into the cloud makes sense

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Financial Crisis and Cloud Computing – Opening session & Global overview
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Coop 2.0 interview: Vikas Nath

This post is part of a series of interviews collected at this years conference Coop 2.0 in Gijon.

Vikas Nath is working with the South Centre – an intergovernmental organization of developing countries founded in 1995. It has 50 member countries and represents the interests of these countries on the international stage. Topics the South Centre works on include trade, intellectual rights or climate change.

Hear Vikas talk about this organization, it’s aims and the technology used – such as a digital TV channel (South Centre Digital TV) or the South Centre blog.

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Coop 2.0 interview: Vikas Nath
was published on 12.06.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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Financial Crisis and Cloud Computing: Delivering More for Less & ICTs for Women’s Empowerment

We want to announce a new event of our partner – the eDevelopment Thematic Group of the World Bank. This time there will be two workshops on one day: Financial Crisis and Cloud Computing: Delivering More for Less and ICTs for Women’s Empowerment.

Financial Crisis and Cloud Computing deals with the relatively new technology of cloud computing, which means to provide a service not on a physical machine but as a service over the web. Solutions like that are highly scalable and ideally available anywhere anytime.

In the context of the Government Transformation initiative of the eDevelopment group, there are several issues connected to eGovernment which will be addressed during the workshop – data security, data portability, requirements, supply, …

More information on the event page (Financial Crisis and Cloud Computing: Delivering More for Less).

ICTs for Women’s Empowerment deals with gender issues in ICT4D and usage of ICTs. Also the government’s and the World Bank’s role is taken a closer loook upon.

More information on the event page (ICTs for Women’s Empowerment).

Both workshops take place on 16 June, Cloud Computing starts at 9 Washington time, Women’s Empowerment at 13:30 Washington time. You can register for the webcast on the eDevelopment events page.

So once again:

What: eDevelopment Thematic Group workshop on Cloud Computing and Gender Issues

Where: Washington DC, also available via webcast

When: 16 June, 15:00 Vienna time

ICT4D.at will of course cover both events on Twitter and here on the blog.

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Financial Crisis and Cloud Computing: Delivering More for Less & ICTs for Women’s Empowerment
was published on 09.06.2009 by Florian Sturm. It files under global
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