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

Monthly Archives: May, 2015

Maternal Healthcare App, MayMay, excels at GTB Innovation and Telecom Asia Awards

Ooredoo Myanmar has received two international awards for its MayMay app, recognizing their innovative approach to helping ensure that vital maternal, child health and wellness information is available to women, particularly during and after pregnancy. The app bridges the mobile and health sectors to help ensure that a wealth of useful information is readily available […]

Our piece on big data for urban planning is out!

Multiple authors; truly multi-disciplinary; published in the center of gravity of our work. I am excited, even though it is still behind a paywall at the Economic and Political Weekly: There is a middle path that positions the citizens who are the ultimate beneficiaries of urban development as the primary sensors. Instead of seeing the […]

Challenges of implementing universal service through direct subsidies

The United States has been at the bleeding edge of universal service policy ever since the term was misinterpreted from the early competitive era. It is therefore worth paying attention to the current FCC efforts. We will soon have US Aid and others promoting these ideas in our parts. More than 12 million households now […]

LIRNEasia recommendations on QoSE in PH

The poor state of Internet in the Philippines has received a significant amount of attention in the past few months. LIRNEasia research fellow Grace Mirandilla-Santos has been involved in multiple working groups, senate hearings and has had many interactions with the respective regulatory agency and ministry on how to introduce some form of quality measures. […]

LIRNEasia at Open Data Conference

I’m scheduled to talk about how data that is in the hands of private entities at the Open Data Conference in Ottawa May 28-29. While this next generation of “open data” is slowly emerging, key questions and persistent obstacles need to be considered. What sort of incentives lead businesses and nonprofits to decide to share […]

Taking big data research to policy: ICTD 2015 session

Audience at big data session on last day of ICTD

Companies are increasingly relying on business analytics to extract value from the large volumes of computer-readable and analyzable (or “datafied”) data in their possession. Big data for development (BD4D) seeks to apply these techniques to big data held by both government and private entities to answer development-related questions. Given low levels of “datafication” of transactions […]

No more Mr. Nice (Tax) Guy

Although Myanmar’s Parliament had approved the imposition of a 5% commercial telecom tax on mobile phone top ups last year, the Government hadn’t previously enforced it due to the rapid sector expansion that occurred in the last 12 months. According to a press release from the Ministry of Communications and Information Technology (MCIT), this exemption […]

Need for open data culture; Professor Samarajiva’s comments featured in Sunday Times

LIRNEasia Founding Chair, Professor Rohan Samarajiva’s comments that Sri Lanka should facilitate an open data culture were highlighted in a recent issue of the Sunday Times Sri Lanka (Business Times section).  These comments were made at a Business Times panel discussion on ICT innovation and awareness held on Wednesday 13th May at the newspaper office […]

On the ITU’s slide into irrelevance

Yoshio Utsumi should know what he speaks of. He was elected as Secretary General in 1998. I remember casting the vote on behalf of Sri Lanka in Minneapolis. He served two terms and was succeeded by Hamadoun Toure, who was elected as Director of ITU-D also in 1998. Utsumi served two terms and stepped down […]

ICT Use in Myanmar: a first look at the national baseline survey results

LIRNEasia recently conducted a nationally representative survey of ICT and knowledge use in Myanmar.  Some of the top-line results were presented for the first time at the ICTD2015 conference last week. The panel was organised by Rich Ling, PhD and Elisa Oreglia, PhD of Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. Slides can be found here. This is an updated version […]

Facebook facing global backlash on “free” Internet

On Monday (May 18, 2015), 60 people from digital-rights groups in 28 countries including India, Pakistan and Indonesia have strongly protested against internet.org in an open letter to Facebook’s founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. It is our belief that Facebook is improperly defining net neutrality in public statements and building a walled garden in which […]

BTRC wears the emperor’s robe

Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (BTRC) has deferred the auction of 1800 MHz and 2100 MHz spectrum until June 10. Its warning of bringing new entrants has already failed to tame the boycotting mobile operators. Now the regulator is blackmailing the mobile industry on QoS. Sunil Kanti Boss, chairman of Bangladesh Telecommunication Regulatory Commission, said the […]

Value of making datasets open

I was listening to a presentation on Work-related Use and Positive Livelihood Outcomes among Mobile Phone Users in Asia by Komathi Ale*, Uni. of Southern California, at ICTD 2015 in Singapore. I was pleased to see some of our publications being cited, but that was just the beginning. After the literature review, the author announced […]

Lessons from Songdo for post-earthquake Nepal?

I had to read this op-ed that ran in a Nepal newspaper several times. The author, a former advisor to the former President of South Korea, believes that an application that picks up on fluctuations in Internet traffic to give people advance warning of 30 seconds to two minutes has relevance to post-quake Nepal. I […]

Lawful intercept challenges in Myanmar

Telenor Myanmar has reported how many lawful intercept requests ity received in the first six months of operation: On the institutional side, the government still lacks the skills, process and willingness to make decisions, Furberg said, which can lead to delays. “Corruption is still very high on our agenda,” he said, admitting that Telenor Myanmar […]

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