Two of our researchers have been selected to present papers at the 35th Research Conference on Communication, Information and Internet Policy which will be held in Virginia, USA on September 28-30, 2007. Helani Galpaya will present “The Telecom Regulatory Environment (TRE) Assessment: methodology and implementation results from six emerging economies” at the session on Trade and Harmonizations of Telecommunication Policies on September 30 2007. Payal Malik will present “India’s Universal Service Obligation for Rural Telecommunications: Issues of Design and Implementation” at the session on Promoting Universal Connectivity on September 29 2007. The papers are available on the TPRC website: ‘Telecom Regulatory Environment (TRE) assessment: Methodology and implementation results from five emerging economies,’ by Rohan Samarajiva, Helani Galpaya, Divakar Goswami and Dimuthu Ratnadiwakara ‘India’s Universal Service Obligation for Rural Telecommunications: Issues of Design and Implementation,’ by Payal Malik The TPRC, a non-profit organization, hosts this annual forum for scholars engaged in publishable research on policy-relevant telecommunications and information issues, and for public- and private-sector decision makers engaged in telecommunications and information policy. The purpose of the conference is to acquaint policy makers with the best of recent research and to familiarize researchers with the knowledge needs of policy makers.
As part of a special review of ICT policy in Indonesia, e-Indonesia, the Indonesian ICT monthly magazine, interviewed a number of key stakeholders including the Minister Sofyan Djalil, Commissioners from BRTI, the regulatory body, civil society group, industry reps and ICT experts. LIRNEasia researcher, Divakar Goswami, was also interviewed. The interview is featured in the online edition here. The interview is in bahasa. The English text of the interview is below: 1.
Rohan Samarajiva and Divakar Goswami from LIRNEasia chaired back-to-back Forum sessions at the ITU World 2006 in Hong Kong on December 7. The Building Digital Communities session, chaired by Divakar, covered a wide-swathe of topics. In his opening remarks [PDF], he outlined on some of the issues that would be covered in the presentations and discussion to follow. In his Keynote address, the Indonesian Minister of Communication & IT, Sofyan Djalil proposed that global equipment manufacturers should adopt a new business model where they share some of the investment risk with operators while deploying infrastructure in financially unviable areas in developing countries. He suggested that the current model where developing countries are only purchasers of high cost equipment and services, breeds dependency and is unsustainable in the long run.
Indonesia’s telecom industry association and regulatory authority requested the participation of LIRNEasia at a seminar in Jakarta to address two key issues: 1) what telecom investors are looking for from the regulatory and policy environment in the country; 2) a review of current policy and regulatory challenges facing the Indonesian telecom sector. Prof Rohan Samarajiva, Executive Director addressed the first issue in his presentation Enabling Investment: Lessons from the Region [PDF] and Divakar Goswami, Director of Organizational Development & Projects made a presentation, Telecom Reforms in Indonesia: Current Achievements and Challenges [PDF] to address the second issue. The final report from the presentations are available here [PDF]. The Seminar was organized by MASTEL, representing a wide spectrum of ICT industry representatives and by BRTI, the Indonesian regulatory authority. The audience consisted of commissioners from BRTI, policymakers from the Ministry of Communication and Information, representatives from the operators, industry associations and civil society groups.
Rohan Samarajiva and Divakar Goswami, chaired sessions at the first Telecom World event , ITU Telecom World 2006, to be held in Asia, in Hong Kong SAR, 3-8 December 2006. This event, held once in four years, is normally held in Geneva. It was moved to Hong Kong to recognize the leading role of the Asia Pacific in the ICT sector today (see Figure 1).Samarajiva and Goswami were the only persons from Sri Lanka featured in the program of the Forum at Telecom World. Figure 1: Goswami, lead researcher on LIRNEasia’s Indonesia ICT sector and regulatory performance study, chaired a session that included keynote presentations by Dr Sofyan Djalil, the Indonesian Minister of ICTs.
The Webhamuva Project was showcased at the World Bank’s launch of the Small Grants Program (SGP) 2006 in Sri Lanka on April 6, 2006, as an example of the previous year’s funding under the same program. www.webhamuva.org was launched last year to ensure that the voices of the tsunami affected were heard widely and their interests and input were taken into consideration during the reconstruction and rehabilitation phase. Divakar Goswami, Director of Organizational Development and Projects at LIRNEasia made a presentation on the project and highlighted some of the findings.