Capacity Development (ICT Policies)
Ongoing since August 2011.
The Art of Knowledge Exchange, produced by the World Bank Institute Knowledge Exchange, is an online planning tool to assist development practitioners undertaking knowledge exchange initiatives. This project management resource consists of five chapters that are intended to guide users through the phases of such initiatives, from identification of capacity development needs, design of the project, implementation, and result assessments. Case study examples are provided within the chapters of the guide to illustrate the practical usage of the outlined steps.
English, Spanish, French, Arabic, Portugese, Chinese
The Art of Knowledge Exchange website, December 11 2012.
e-Agriculture: A Global Community Facilitating Dialogue and Resources on the Use of ICTs for Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development
e-Agriculture is a global Community of Practice, where people from all over the world exchange information, ideas, and resources related to the use of information and communication technologies (ICT) for sustainable agriculture and rural development.
With over 8,000 members from 160 countries and territories, the e-Agriculture Community is made up of individual stakeholders such as information and communication specialists, researchers, farmers, students, policy makers, business people, development practitioners, and others.
English, French, Spanish
e-Agriculture website, November 29 2011; and email from Michael Riggs to The Communication Initiative on February 20 2012.
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) launched a new strategy in response to the United Nations (UN) division of labour related to HIV and AIDS interventions. This
This network of local research and development organisations in 8 conflict/post-war countries - Sierra Leone, Mozambique, Palestine, Lebanon, Bosnia Herzegovina, Kosovo, Afghanistan and East Timor - is sharing experiences, undertaking research, and exchanging information on what Tiri describes as a previously under-researched yet critical issue: corruption and integrity in post-war reconstruction. NIR is based on the idea that "Networks are valuable mechanisms for extending the capacities of the individual activist or organisation. They overcome problems of dispersion, incomplete resourcing and risk in a productive way. Reform minded individuals often find themselves without the support of like-minded people with whom they can advance their particular agenda and can as a result lack suitable knowledge to minimise risks and increase the productivity of their activity."
Research - and dissemination of findings - is the key means of carrying out advocacy as part of this network. Eight local policy centres in Afghanistan, Bosnia Herzegovina, East Timor, Kosovo, Lebanon, Mozambique, Palestine, and Sierra Leone took part in research whose outputs included: a survey mapping the opportunities for corruption presented by the reconstruction process, case studies of integrity reforms and corruption cases from post-war countries, a national integrity system survey mapping the countries' integrity system, opinion surveys and focus groups detailing local experiences, and recommendations for future action. These results are being shared on the NIR page on the Tiri website.
By 2009 NIR aims to be in a position to spin off as an independent NGO network, working collaboratively with but separately from Tiri. NIR's 4 programme areas over the coming 2 years are expected to include:
- Reconstruction and Aid Monitor (RAM): this will involve selecting a sample of reconstruction projects in the countries where NIR is active, auditing them, and publishing the results in an international database.
- Reform Agenda Partnership: spurred by the findings of the RAM and based on current research findings, NIR will implement integrity reforms in existing and emerging post-war countries and, in cooperation with northern and southern NGO partners, lead an international and local advocacy campaign for improved transparency and accountability in reconstruction.
- Rapid Peer Support: enables existing NIR partners to rapidly and effectively mobilise their knowledge and use peer support to the benefit of civil society organisations (CSOs), donors, and governments in a new post-war country.
- Capacity Development for Reconstruction: equips partners with policy research and monitoring skills to gather information in data-poor and complex environments, expand their skills on accountability monitoring and integrity reform, and learn from each other (in cooperation with universities and think tanks).
Conflict, Rights, Overseas Development Assistance.
According to Tiri, the rationale for focusing on post-war reconstruction settings is two-fold: "First, the opportunity cost of systemic corruption is enormous for the counties concerned and can, among other effects, make a recurrence of conflict more likely, as well as reducing the sustainability and effectiveness of the aid delivery. Second, post-war settings are prone to specific corruption opportunities and call for specific counter-measures and this problem has been largely neglected by aid donor and implementing agencies." Tiri contends that "[t]he time has come for a systematic appraisal of recent post-war reconstruction experience, to draw lessons from this experience, and to implement standards that tackle corruption and the rehabilitation of integrity institutions from the very onset of the reconstruction effort. An informed group of civil society leaders from the affected countries are one essential factor needed to advance and inform such a reform agenda both within their own countries and globally."
Tiri indicates that the NIR reports, published in January 2007, "offer a damning indictment of the sequencing of reforms in post-war countries. Transparency and accountability of aid to its beneficiaries comes last in donor priorities." The organisation holds that "Lack of integrity in reconstruction threatens to push war-torn countries back into open conflict."
As of this writing, members of the network include: Integrity Watch Afghanistan (Afghanistan), Independent Bureau for Humanitarian Issues (Bosnia-Herzegovina), Kosovar Stability Initiative (Kosova), Lebanese Transparency Association and the
Lebanese Center for Policy Studies (Lebanon), The Coalition for Accountability and Integrity - AMAN (Palestine), Centro de Integridade Publica (Mozambique), National Accountability Group (Sierra Leone), Timorese Institute for Development Studies (Timor Leste).
This project has been supported by the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD) and the Open Society Institute (OSI), with additional support from the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA).
This project draws on a series of research studies designed to explore and capitalise on the integration of ICTs with DE, understood to be a way to deliver high-quality education and to make higher education affordable and accessible (thereby helping to address equity issues).
The PANdora project has been designed to facilitate communication and collaboration among Asian experts, so that they can study, investigate, develop, and experiment together as a team. It is expected that in this way they will learn from each other, synergise their expertise, and avoid repeated mistakes. The networking approach is designed to build on the strengths of individual Asian research teams, and to prevent overlap and duplication between projects and nations. In that sense, PANdora is not only a network with multiple institutions in each country and multiple participating countries across Asia, but it is a design wherein researchers from multiple countries work together on one or more themes of relevance to them. This design challenges the typical design of research networks in an effort to encourage real learning and sharing across multiple cultures. Resources are built into the project to support the research capacity development of the developing country researchers.
A key tool for facilitating this networking is the PANdora website, which provides a focal point for information about the projects, and for online collaboration among the project teams through a password-protected "members' section. The 9 PANdora sub-projects, which are detailed here, are complementary in scope, and, it is hoped, will lead to the development of DE methods appropriate to South and SouthEast Asia generally. Some of the projects are aiming to explore the benefits of new technologies by pilot-testing them, while others are aimed at doing ground-level research to improve understanding of the various issues surrounding DE, especially from the Asian perspective. For example, researchers are looking at how short message systems (SMS) could be used to handle student registration; evaluating various kinds of distance learning software; sharing learning objects; and analysing how to rigorously e-assess students’ work to ensure high standards. All of the projects share a focus on learning lessons from previous online projects, developing access models and understand how they work and in what circumstances. (Please click here to learn about each of the specific projects, and the participating institutions).
In the words of one PANdora organiser, "The basic issue is that we have a huge Asian population mass and a corresponding demand for higher education that the existing number of colleges and universities have no ability to address. Compounding this problem is the fact that we have a very small supply of qualified faculty." In Pakistan, for example, only 3% of the country's 18- to 24-year-olds are enrolled in higher education institutions. Part of the problem is that students in the countryside must move to the city to get an education; many cannot afford this. Thus, the core issue with DE in the Asian context is about access.
Organisers observe that much, if not all, of the current DE paedagogy - whether theory, literature, software, tools, applications or methods - is inaccessible to Asian teachers, who cannot access this knowledge because it is not expressed in local languages that they can read, learn from, compare, adapt and generate anew. Asia is different from other continents, they explain, because of its tremendous diversity of languages.
Organisers cite early findings from the sub-projects to highlight the potential significance of their findings. For example, as part of one study, "the problem of introducing and using newer technologies in Asian countries is being identified and understood, while the acceptability of DE as a serious alternative to traditional face-to-face techniques is being examined. New techniques such as text messaging on cellular phones are being studied, and learning management platforms are being compared and evaluated."
Depite the promise they see in the collaborative research approach, organisers acknowledge challenges: "Since the project started in 2005, we have found that some people are not as active in communicating their thoughts and activities as others. The poor Internet infrastructure in some countries and the partner institutions has been blamed for the silence of some project members...But I think the problem also lies in the different levels of commitment and expertise..."
UNESCO Asia and Pacific Regional Bureau for Education's "News on ICT in Education", September 2006; "Pandora's Box: A New Model for Education in Asia", by Lisa Waldick, January 2006; "Reflections: The PANdora Model of Collaborative Distance Education Research", set to appear in Distance Education (Winter 2007), forwarded in an email from Dr. Jon P. Baggaley to The Communication Initiative on February 1 2007; PANdora website; and emails from Jon Baggaley, Maria Ng Lee Hoon, and Naveed A. Malik to The Communication Initiative on February 2 2007.
Government - policy and legal framework, accessibility, public participation, accountability and transparency
Education - capacity building, e-learning, schools and technical education
Economy - e-commerce, appropriate business climate, public private partnerships
Agriculture - resource management
Tourism - booking, scheduling and payment systems
Health - information sharing, digital services
Mining and Manufacturing - prospecting and data management, land-use planning, quality control and marketing
Civil Society - gender equality, youth access, universal access
Government of Zimbabwe
National Economic Consultative Forum (NECF)
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Zimbabwe
National University of Science and Technology (NUST)
Title: Zimbabwe National Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Policy Framework
Publication: National Information and Communication Technology Project
Click here to download the report as a PDF document.
Education and Training - ICT educational curricula, technical training, private-public partnerships
Infrastructure - ICT access, national information portals, rural access
Economy - tax incentives, public-private partnerships, national fund
Legal - legal framework, legislation, accessibility, information security
Research and Development - cooperation, coordination, accessibility
The government has a number of policy objectives:
Objective 1: Raising awareness
The government is dedicating itself to the creation and expansion of public awareness of ICT programmes. This awareness will protect the public interest in the areas of policy formulation and development, and regulatory and licensing mechanisms. The government would like to enable both public and private sector participation in promoting ICT awareness.
Objective 2: ICT literacy and capacity building
In order to advance ICT literacy and human resource capacity, the government intends to: focus on the integration of ICT into all educational curricula; to develop and manage technical training within schools, business/industry and international institutions by promoting private-public partnerships that encourage repatriation of international-based Ugandan ICT professionals; and to establish incentives for capacity development for all sectors of society.
Objective 3: Infrastructure
The government of Uganda intends to promote appropriate strategies for affordable access to infrastructure for development by coordinating sectoral policies and regulations that address the public’s need for access to the internet. This will be done via accessible digital national information portals at all levels of government. Expanding access to rural communities is also a policy objective.
Objective 4: Funding and public-private partnerships
The funding and creation of public-private partnerships to develop and expand ICT is a stated goal. Governmental budgetary allowances, in conjunction with private sector incentives, will be developed to create an environment that encourages fair competition and pricing for domestic development and participation.
Objective 5: Innovative financing strategies
Essentially, the government intends to set up a national ICT fund that will encourage tax incentives and public-private partnerships, with contributions and “innovative financing schemes” where available, from developmental partners and the private sector.
Objective 6: Creating, developing and disseminating domestic information
Within this objective, the government intends to create an appropriate legal framework for protecting indigenous and foreign intellectual property rights while ensuring public access to information. The government intends to encourage public-private partnerships, including both independent public and private sector participation, in the creation, storage and dissemination of domestic-oriented material.
Objective 7: Facilitating public access
Within the larger rubric of legal mechanisms, the government intends to codify public accessibility, and create governance structures and regulatory bodies for maintaining an appropriate level of affordable accessibility for all citizens. These bodies and regulations will focus on removing barriers to access, strengthening formal institutions (libraries, archive and information distribution centres), and create mechanisms for redressing shortcomings in ICT policy.
Objective 8: Accessible media plurality
A plurality of media is desired for distribution and participation. As such, the government desires to create a legal and “regulatory system that will prevent a mono-media, or cross-media concentration [including]…mergers.” This objective intends to focus on creating and disseminating diverse programming that will reflect an appropriate level of diversity for all citizenry.
Objective 9: Promoting information for minority groups
Language accessibility is the central theme of this objective. The government intends to encourage public private partnership collaboration that focuses on language barriers within ICT. Similarly, the creation of local content and participation will be encouraged, especially for disadvantaged and special needs groups.
Objective 10: Gender issues
Despite gender issues being addressed within the previous objectives, the government specifically intends to ensure that the gender information gap within ICT development has a separate mechanism for advocacy.
Objective 11: Establishing legal framework
The government will seek the input of both stakeholders and user-groups, which will be followed by legislation to ensure accessibility and security of information. The legislation will be designed to conform to local needs as well as international standards.
Objective 12: Research and development (R&D)
The government will establish, support, promote and coordinate R&D by national professionals in cooperation with local universities and technical institutions, in order to maximise nation-wide accessibility.
Objective 13: Enhance intellectual assets
In order to prepare for the transition to a knowledge-based society, the government will promote and enhance policies and innovative initiatives that will encourage value and rewards for intellectual assets.
Objective 14: Enhancing domestic and international collaboration and co-ordination
This objective recognises the need to increase domestic cross-policy coordination, in order to effectively and efficiently maintain the stated goals outlined in the Strategic Framework for National Development Vision 2025. The government intends to achieve this domestic goal by establishing an information management system that will avoid policy duplication and address multi-sectoral needs, all of which will be coordinated with development partners and organisations.
Title: The Ministry of Works, Housing and Communications: National Information and Communication Technology Policy
Year: October 2003
Click here to download the policy as a Microsoft Word document.