eAsia2009 (II): Plenary Session, Track 2, pt.2

Notes from Asian Telecentre Forum 2009 / eAsia 2009 held in the BMICH, Colombo, Sri Lanka, on December 2-4th, 2009. More notes on this event: easia2009.

Plenary Session, Track 2 (pt.2)

Building a Knowledge Society for All. Emphasizing Government’s Strategic Role Supporting ICT Innovations in Education
Jyrki Pulkkinen, GeSCI

The gap between developing countries and developed or industrialized countries can be widening due to lower investments in ICT, education and innovation processes in developing countries. Knowledge is increasingly the key factor of production as well as a raw material for economic development.

We need to invest in ICTs that impact Education. But not wasting money in screens that substitute blackboards or handbooks for doing exactly the same things: this is a misinvestment.

One OLPC promoter once said that computers at the OLPC programem could substitute teachers. Then, why give them to children that already go to school instead of giving them to childrent that do not go to school?. We need to prioritizise the excluded ones, not the included ones.

ICT Innovations and educational challenges:

  • lack of universal inclusive access
  • poor quality of education
  • poor management on the education system
  • incrasing irrelevance of the current educatoin system in the knowledge society, new skills that need to be learnt (and besides e-skills)

Layers of successful ICT integration in education (much more than infrastructure):

  • Hardware, software: ICT
  • Warsmware: principal, teacher, learners, parents
  • Socialware: school, university, institutional development
  • Cultureware: strategies & policies

What can the government do?

  • Foster multistakeholder partnerships
  • Create an enabling environment for development
  • A blueprint and a roadmap for partners
  • Key resources: institutional, human and financial

J.B. Dissanayaka, Ambassador for Sri Lanka in Tahiland, Cambodia and Laos PDR

Vidatha (sanscrit): knowledge that is given, knowledge that is transferred.

[interesting speech — impossible to reproduce here — about languages and their usage in ICTs]

Digital Bangladesh: Road to Achieving ‘Sonar Bangla’ (golden Bengal) in the 21st Century
Abdul Karim, Prime Minister’s Office, People’s Republic of Bangladesh

Virtual one stop shop for Government services: cost effective, quick, participative, etc.

Of course, connectivity is the issue, that’s why the cretion fo the “mobile lady” and other public access points.

Also a rise of m-Services provisioned by the privaste sector: language learning, health, agriculture information, legal advisory, court case notification, market access and trade, emergency service, etc.

ICT Act 2009 (digital certification, fight against cybercrime), Right to (Public) Information Act 2009, m-Banking.

Q&A

Q: How can ICTs or the ‘Sonar Bangla’ be used to fight government corruption? Abdul Karim: ICTs can ensure proper transactions, as getting rid of paper, and minimizing physical contact of documents, bureaucratic corruption has necessarily to decrease. Pulkkinen: corruption happens when people don’t know. Raising awareness — and knowledge — on public affairs is the best way to reduce corruption. E.g. if the citizen knows how much money should there be in a specific account and the citizen knows how much money there actually is in that account, it is very difficult to cheat and remain unnoticed.

Telecentre Forum 2009 - eAsia 2009 (2009)

If you need to cite this article in a formal way (i.e. for bibliographical purposes) I dare suggest:

Peña-López, I. (2009) “eAsia2009 (II): Plenary Session, Track 2, pt.2” In ICTlogy, #75, December 2009. Barcelona: ICTlogy.
Retrieved month dd, yyyy from http://ictlogy.net/review/?p=3026

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