LIRNEasia is a regional ICT policy and regulation think tank active across the Asia Pacific

Monthly Archives: October, 2011

Inclusive development differs from pro-poor development

We’ve been talking about inclusive development for some time now. Here, our friend W.A. Wijewardene, defines inclusive development and distinguishes it from pro-poor actions. The Commission he refers to is the Commission on Growth and Development chaired by Micheal Spence, whose work has influenced ours in many ways. The Commission released its report in 2008 […]

Media coverage for pineapple value-chain research

The October 13th dissemination event has generated more coverage, this time in the Sunday Times, the leading English weekly. LIRNEasia, a think tank headquartered in Sri Lanka and representing South Asian, has teamed up with the Lanka Fruits, Vegetable Producers and Exporters Association (LFVPEA) and are jointly involved in a project to find out ways […]

Sri Lanka: What people spend on telecom, in relation to total communication and recreation expenditures

The 2009-10 Household Income and Expenditure Survey (HIES) is a representative sample survey based on responses from 22,000 households from all across Sri Lanka, except Kilinochchi, Mullaitivu and Mannar districts that were considered too dangerous because of uncleared mines. It is a veritable treasure trove of data on how Sri Lankans live, what the differences […]

More taxes on US consumers to fund USD 4.5 billion Universal Service Fund

The program we talked about few weeks back has been announced. It will spend USD 4.5 billion a year to connect 20 million Americans to broadband. In an effort to expand broadband Internet service, the Federal Communications Commission on Thursday approved an overhaul of its fund that subsidizes rural telephone service, turning it into one […]

Real structural separation in New Zealand

The New Zealand incumbent telco has separated itself into infrastructure and access companies, according to Telecom TV. This week it was announced that the incumbent telco will demerge so that Chorus, the firm’s fixed-line infrastructure arm, would be able to participate as an independent entity in the upcoming award of government contracts for the building […]

Abu Saeed Khan on LION, the Asian (Information) Highway

Senior Policy Fellow Abu Saeed Khan has been extensively quoted in an analytical piece on backhaul concerns in Asia, published in Capacity magazine. Coincidentally, this is directly connected to the post a short while back on the data tsunami. One man, however, has come up with an ambitious concept that could potentially dwarf any existing […]

The coming data tsunami: Lessons from the hotel industry

Hotels are sort of like countries with regard to broadband use. The guests have to obtain broadband connectivity from the hotel (let’s disregard the 3G option for now); residents in a country have to obtain broadband from providers licensed by the government. When quality drops, users hold the hotel accountable; in case of a country, […]

What does insuring rural farmers have to do with ICTs or climate change?

Our agri value chain work starts from the agriculture side and hopes to end up with solutions that include ICTs is some form. This is not that easy. This fascinating article about how venture capital is focusing on ICT applications gives some excellent ideas. His firm has invested in RelayRides and other start-ups that stretch […]

Asia not so important for Nokia?

It was just a few weeks ago that reports said Asian markets had more or less saved the year for both Ericsson and Nokia. Yet the product launch focuses on Europe and US. Go figure. BTW, these handsets are LTE. Nokia’s chief executive, Stephen A. Elop, presented the Lumia 800, a 420 euro ($584) touch-screen […]

You can be any caste you like, but if you don’t have a mobile phone you are nobody

Until the 1970s, it was customary to ensure seats for specific under-represented castes in the Sri Lankan Cabinet. It was only in 1989 that a non-leading caste politician got elected President. Caste-bloc voting has ceased to be a major factor in elections in at least the Western Province. These progressive changes are catching on in […]

Moment of truth for Nokia

When we started talking about mobile devices being the primary way that people connect to the Internet, we did not think the transformation would be so difficult for the leading device maker. At a conference in London on Wednesday, Nokia intends to present at least two new phones, one aimed at high-end users and one […]

Poor served better by sector reform than by subsidy programs: World Bank evaluation

It’s always a challenge to decipher the special language of evaluation reports, but this para in the recent evaluation report on the ICT activities of the World Bank does seem like an indictment of universal service programs. 4.28 Equity and integration of marginalized groups have been more effectively supported by Bank support for ICT policy […]

90% of deaths and 73% of people affected by disasters in first half of 2011 were in Asia

It used to be that we had the majority of deaths and the developed economies had the majority of economic damage from disasters. But according to the authoritative CRED-CRUNCH newsletter, Asia seems to absorbing the most of all forms of damage, including economic losses. Whereas 42% of disasters [in the first half of 2011] happened […]

LIRNEasia agriculture value chain research in media

The Sunday Observer reported on the dissemination workshop conducted on 13 October 2011: Kapugama said that Sri Lanka should promote high density planting and intensive management to boost pineapple cultivation in the country. Pineapple cultivators in Sri Lanka face many challenges due to the scarcity of land, healthy suckers and the absence of high yielding […]

Cameras to reduce electoral fraud?

People have been sending me pictures, not of Qaddafi dead, but of people taking pictures of the dead Qaddafi. I was among those who speculated on the role of cameras in moderating the crackdown in Bahrain (before the real crackdown): “Could the ubiquity of cameras be the differentiating factor? Cameras are everywhere in Tripoli and […]

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