I thought members of this group might be interested in a new USAID program called the Global Broadband and Innovations Program.
The program has two main thrusts - increasing wireless voice and broadband connectivity throughout the developing world, and working with USAID missions and bureaus to improve their programmatic use of ICTs. In the connectivity space we do a number of different things - from working with national Universal Service Funds on their business processes, to national broadband planning, to working with tech companies to help them pilot and market low-cost communication infrastructure we feel would benefit developing countries.

As far as improving USAID's use of ICTs, we act as the agency's center for research and implementation consulting on all things ICT4D. One of the ways we do this is through a web portal at www.gbiportal.net. The GBI Portal, as it is called, is a multimedia resource portal and social network for development professionals interested in incorporating ICTs into their work. The portal brings together news, commentary, and updates from the field on cutting edge technologies and their innovative applications to social and economic development. Developed primarily for USAID, the portal provides sector specific information and resources, as well as targeted information about connectivity, mobile and innovations in development. In addition, the portal provides members a place to meet, network, share their ideas and questions, and form communities of practice. We are still in the pre-launch stage, so there is obviously more content on the way, but I welcome you to take a look and join.

Best Regards,
Laurie Moy