A 4-day residential course on ‘How to Engage in Broadband Policy and Regulatory Processes’ was held at Hotel Jal Mahal, Pokhara Nepal (16th- 19th February 2019). This is the ninth of a series of short courses funded by Ford Foundation. The first two courses of this series mainly focused on producing knowledgeable consumers of research who are able to engage in broadband policy and regulatory processes, whereas this course along with the previous courses in New Delhi, India, Nagarkot, Nepal and Marawila, Sri Lanka incorporate how to produce policy-relevant research into the syllabus. Call for applications: English Syllabus of the course can be accessed here. Photos of the Event Course Report The presentations of the course are below Day 1 Session 1 – Introduction to workshop Session 2 – Communicating to Policy Makers Session 3 – Comparative Data and Introduction to Web Resources Assignment 1 – Fine-tuning and Framing a Policy Proposal Session 4 – Introduction policy/legal research, including case study on ICT policy & regulation in federal states Day 2 Session 5 –National Broadband Networks of India, Malaysia, Indonesia and Australia: Comparative study Session 6 – Broadband laws and Policy regime in Nepal (Electronic Transaction Act, Telecommunication Act, Draft IT law and other relevant policies Session […]
Details and application process for training event to be held 16-19 February in Pokhara.
LIRNEasia. (2018). AfterAccess: ICT access and use in Asia and the Global South (Version 2.0). Colombo: LIRNEasia
Nepal performs better on Internet connectivity and mobile phone use than its wealthier neighbors in Asia, our AfterAccess surveys showed.
Seventy-two percent of the Nepali population aged 15-65 owned a mobile phone, and 60% of these were Internet-enabled (feature or smartphone). In addition, 46% of Nepali’s are aware of the Internet – the highest reported number out of the Asian countries included in the report: India, Pakistan, Myanmar Bangladesh and Cambodia.
Presented by Helani Galpaya (@helanigalpaya), CEO, LIRNEasia and Tharaka Amarasinghe (@tharaka89), Research Manager, LIRNEasia on 4 October 2018 in Kathmandu, Nepal
LIRNEasia. (2018). AfterAccess: ICT access and use in Asia and the Global South (Version 1). Colombo: LIRNEasia
IMPORTANT: Deadline for submissions has been extended to 9:00am (+5:30 GMT) on 20th September 2018. We are inviting Proposals from potential Bidders to conduct a qualitative study on ICT accessibility for persons with disabilities in Nepal. The full RFP is given below (access the editable version here). Please also see our FGD Sampling Table, Technical Proposal Template, Financial Proposal Template, and Sample Contract before submitting the proposals. Deadline for submissions is 17th September 2018.
Inspired by LIRNEasia's Hackathon for Accessible and Inclusive ICTs in Kathmandu, Nepal, Rajat Acharya, went looking for his childhood neighbor, a self-taught deaf man. What resulted was an gamified learning app with a wide range of use, first runner-up at the hackathon.
The hearing or speech disabled require sign-language interpretation to communicate with the normally-abled world. But sign-language interpreters are scarce. Unless there is a sign-language competent person in the household (e.g., a child who can communicate through the spoken word who also knows sign language), it is quite challenging.
Now that the telecom markets in emerging Asia have matured and now that the potential of easily deployable apps is within reach because of the fast spreading smartphones, we must make access by the disabled a priority. The key to independent living is technology. Our current work in Nepal, supported by the Ford Foundation, has accessible and inclusive access as the principal focus. The workshop held 16-17 March in Kathmandu sought to prioritize the problems amenable to ICT solutions. This will feed into a pre-hackathon being organized March 18-19 at the Tribhuvan University Institute of Engineering, Pulchowk Campus: Here are some reflections on problems faced by the disabled in Nepal which are amenable to ICT solutions.
We are inviting Proposals from potential Bidders to conduct a nationally representative study of ICT access and use in Nepal with special focus on the disabled. The full RFP is downloadable below. Please also see our Technical Proposal Template, Financial Proposal Template, and Sample Locations before submitting the proposals. Deadline for submissions is 29 January 2018.
A lot of the discussion in the concluding sessions focused on implementation, as intended. Here is a participant writing about the highlights in Setopati, a digital newspaper: Similarly, senior Director at Nepal Telecommunications Authority Anand Raj Khanal said broadband could be leveraged to graduate country from the least developed status to the developing on by 2022. Arguing that NTA’s primary role is the infrastructure development in terms of expansion of broadband, Director Khanal expressed doubt whether the contracts NTA had with Nepal Telecoms and other companies would be completed on time to ensure broadband access to people. According to him, contracts were signed this April and May to ensure broadband internet access for 11 quake-hit districts. He too admitted, “We’re smart in policy formulation but weak at implementation.
The big news from the last broadband course we taught in Nepal was that only 2.6 percent of all the universal service funds collected since 1998 had been disbursed. This information, unearthed in the course of completing an assignment, was presented to decision makers in government who came to judge the mock public hearing. It was published in the Nepali media. Two years later, the Senior Director of the Nepal Telecom Authority who spoke about the regulatory aspects of broadband rollout did not speak in vague generalities or in the future tense.
The Nepali Reporter was the first to carry a story on the Ford Foundation supported course being conducted in Dhulikhel, July 14-17, 2017. The training organized by LIRNEasia, a Sri Lankan think-tank, Internet Society Nepal Chapter and Centre for Law and Technology, is engrossed on multifarious issues relating to internet and information as inclusion in information society, affordable broadband of adequate quality, services and applications that are of value to Nepali users, broadband infrastructures, measures to enhance and assure trust and security, ICT in disaster risk reduction and disaster response, demand size research and the research techniques as searching and managing data, and utilization of internet.
In late 2015 I wrote that: “All the fuss has been about Digital India. But India has fallen back six places to 131, despite improving its IDI score from 2.14 to 2.69 in the ICT Development Index. Nepal, which does not have a funded and actively promoted digital strategy, has advanced four places to 136th place.