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

Call for proposals: CPRsouth 2017. For more details see announcement.

Work with us: We are currently recruiting for the position of Big Data Researcher.

Visit to University of Dhaka

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Last weekend (3-4 February 2017), I along with my colleagues Shazna and Dedunu visited University of Dhaka. We were able to share our experiences in conducting policy relevant research on big data for development in Sri Lanka, with both faculty and students. The other objective was to meet with the faculty and staff associated with the […]

Refugees and ICTs

We have written about use of smartphones by refugees. But the Economist provides a much more comprehensive view. Information and communications technology show up right through what researchers call the “refugee life-cycle”. People in northern Iraq use WhatsApp and Viber to talk to friends who have made it to Germany; UNHCR uses iris scans for […]

App stores as chokepoints

We commissioned a study on the Indian app economy back in 2013. The report was completed in 2014. One thing that study did not pick up on was the danger that governments could use the app store to control access to information. We were not alone in missing this critical implication: For more than a […]

LIRNEasia human capital research used in talk show on university reforms

I was included in a five-person panel discussing the university education in Sri Lanka in light of the currently heightened interest re relaxing the government monopoly. In my opening comments, I referred to research conducted in 2012 by the Human Capital Research team. I also talked about the need to allow innovation in the educational […]

Multiple SIM ownership declining

Multiple SIM ownership has been a topic we have given much thought to over the years. Unlike the ITU, we never thought it was a good thing in and of itself. We tried to understand why people bothered to juggle multiple SIMs. We found it had many causes, not just high interconnection charges as suggested […]

Governments tax, users respond rationally

It has become increasingly common for developing-country governments to extract rents from what they think is an easy target, international communication. After all, the people affected don’t vote in their elections, even if they are in many cases, hardworking expat workers who keep the home economies afloat. But telecom users are not stupid. They have […]

Top Five Issues in Agriculture

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  Many issue have hindered the progress in agriculture sector. Farmers, buyers and consumer are raising issues every day despite the efforts by policy makers and institutions. May be it is not that the actions are not generating results rather the actions are not well coordinated and policies are misaligned. One way to go about […]

Backhaul networks in Myanmar gain additional financing

It’s not enough to build towers. The last mile has to be complemented by the middle mile and the first mile (though that seems a strained metaphor for international cables). The Multilateral Investment Guarantee Agency had backed the $105.74 million loan from the Bank of China (Hong Kong) to the Myanmar Fiber Optic Communication Network, […]

Online freelancing explained (in Sinhala)

We’ve been very happy we succeeded in disseminating the results of the online freelancing research in both Sinhala and Tamil. Here is an interview that was broadcast on a cable/satellite only news channel on multiple occasions, now on Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ZzurcU5IjA&index=98&list=PLkkCdeu97j3DUgSfk8SsOiqN6yPHwbq-K

RTI becomes law in Sri Lanka; Moving beyond to Open Government Data

Two ongoing projects at LIRNEasia seek to open up government data. The first is the inclusive information societies project. The second seeks to present electoral delimitation data to stakeholders in manipulable form to facilitate informed discussion. Human Capital Research Team Leader Sujata Gamage presents the big picture in a column in FT: Open data or […]

Sustainability: How that translates to agriculture

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    Agricultural sustainability is a priority in terms of promoting the “Green Economy”. However during the past several years the word “Agricultural Sustainability” has only been a catch phrase. Policy makers pound hard on the word “Agricultural sustainability” while the country was fully geared towards chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Neither farmers nor the policy […]

Emergency telecom cluster, an alternative to Tampere Convention?

I attended the Social Media and Disaster Relief Conference organized by the Indian arm of the Center for Strategic and International Studies hoping to learn something. The existence of the Emergency Telecom Cluster was one new thing I learned about. This is a specialized cluster associated with the Inter-Agency Standing Committee which seeks to coordinate […]

Campana takes giant leap to plug Myanmar fail-safe

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State-owned Myanmar Post and Telecommunication (MPT) is a member of the prehistoric SEA-ME-WE3 and very recent SEA-ME-WE5 submarine cable consortiums. MPT also shares the landing facilities with China Unicom, which brings a branch of Asia Africa Europe-1 (AAE-1) cable to the country. This is how the incumbent has secured the landing of two contemporary submarine […]

Is the lack of women using Facebook in India a problem?

For some, Facebook is a bad thing. That was an underlying theme of the opposition to Free Basics and zero rating. I guess having less women use a bad thing is good, so they should be happy. The fact remains that Facebook is the most popular app, the killer app that everyone was looking for. […]

Shazna Zuhyle to Chair ITU sub-group on prices

One of the outcomes of last October’s meeting of ITU’s Expert Group on Telecommunication/ICT Indicators (EGTI) was the formation of an EGTI sub-group to propose revisions to ITU’s methodology for collecting ICT prices. LIRNEasia research manager Shazna Zuhyle will Chair this sub-group comprising thirteen experts from academia and various national regulatory authorities. It will review and redefine […]

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