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What Is the Future of ICT and
Development in Cuba?


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April 29th DC Salon - RSVP Now


The US Government has a mixed record in using technology to help the Cuban people improve their lives. Most of its attempts ended in failure, some painful for everyone involved, others comical in their shortsightedness.

At the same, Cuba is a technology backwater. Only 9% of the population has access to mobile services, 5% has Internet access, and neither is affordable to the masses or free of censorship. Of course, open competition by mobile operators or Internet service providers is nonexistent.

However, President Obama has finally brought Cuban-American relations into the 21st Century with historic changes to the political and commercial relations between the two countries. Of specific importance to us is the liberalization of telecommunications investments. Change is now happening fast. Even more importantly for us, is there a role for the international development community in Cuba? Do they need our technology tools to speed development? Or is the famed Cuban entrepreneurial spirit strong enough to lead its own tech-blossoming, supported by a wave of Cuban-American Diaspora and Foreign Direct Investment?

Please RSVP now to join your peers and 3 noted thought leaders to debate the role and impact of ICT and development in the resurgence of Cuba during this historic opportunity:
  • Rafael Romeu, President and CEO of DevTech Systems, Inc, and ex-president of the Association for the Study of the Cuban Economy.
  • Sandy Acosta Cox, President, Empowerment Fund for the Americas, and ex-CoP of an IRD program in Cuba
  • Miguel Sancho Fernández, Developer at Peach Underneath, Inc and ex-Head of Center of Information Industry, Universidad de Ciencias Informáticas in Havana
We’ll have hot coffee and catered breakfast treats for a morning rush, but seating is limited, so please RSVP now to join in the discussion. Once we reach our 35-person capacity there will be a waiting list!

ICT4Cuba
April Technology Salon DC
8:30 - 10:30 a.m.
Wednesday, April 29th
Washington, DC

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How Are ICTs and Social Media Supporting Tenant Rights?

 
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April 16th Brooklyn Salon - RSVP Now


Gentrification is top of mind of many Brooklynites, as they are pushed out of their communities by large-scale economic development and wealthier groups moving in. One effect of the gentrification process is often the shuttering of local businesses and skyrocketing rents for residents as landlords make way for those who can pay more.

The New York City Office of the Comptroller reported in April 2014 that median rents in the city had risen by 75% since 2001, compared to 44% in the rest of the US, while at the same time, real incomes declined overall for New Yorkers. At the same time, the numbers of rent-regulated properties has decreased. The harshest consequences of rising rents and lowering incomes are felt by the poor and working classes (those earning less than $40,000 a year).

This situation is contributing to an increase in homelessness, with the city’s shelters receiving an all time high number of people seeking support and services. The negative impacts of gentrification also tend to differentially impact on communities of color. Tenants do have rights -- however, enforcing those rights can take years when landlords have deep pockets. In 2003, a tenant advocacy group found that in cases initiated by tenants, only 2% resulted in fines for landlords.

Residents of gentrifying areas have not been silent about the impact of gentrification. Numerous community groups have formed and are fighting to keep communities intact, cohesive and affordable for residents. Social media and better data and data visualization can help to track and create evidence bases that can support residents, or to connect them to support services and legal aid.

Please RSVP now to join us at the Brooklyn Community Foundation for a lively roundtable conversation on tenant rights and ICTs. We’ll hear from community organizations, technology developers, legal advocates and others with an interest in technology and social activism around tenant rights, including such questions as:
  • How are community organizations successfully using ICTs and social media to support tenant rights?
  • What is working well, and what are some of the lessons learned about using ICTs and social media for outreach?
  • What are some new ways that organizations could use ICTs to support their work?
  • What support do community organizations need to do this work?
Please RSVP now to join Technology Salon Brooklyn for a lively discussion! Be sure to arrive early to get a good seat, hot coffee, and morning snacks before we start.
 
ICTs, Social Media and Tenant Rights
Thursday, April 16, 2015, 9-11am
Brooklyn Community Foundation
1000 Dean Street, Suite 307
Brooklyn, NY 11238
RSVP is Required to Attend

The Foundation is a short walk from the A, C, S 2, 3, 4 or 5 trains (Franklin Av stop) (map)
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Can Mobile Games Really Improve Development Outcomes?
 

 

 1st Bangkok Salon - April 23 - RSVP Now


Look around most Southeast Asian cities, and you’ll soon notice one thing they all have in common: lots of people playing games on their mobile phones. But besides helping to distract during a long commute, can games provide tangible benefit to people’s lives?

There is a growing recognition that "serious" games can increase engagement and understanding of development issues, particularly with youth. As Jennifer Lentfer says, the use of games in development can:
  • Be a quicker and more effective way to engage communities,
  • Result in more productive dialogue than with traditional engagement processes,
  • Trigger independent actions at the community or individual level.
But are games, serious or not, really a better way to do development? Can mobile games engage and motivate better than in-person participatory processes? Or do they seem a flippant extravagance in the face of real suffering?

Please RSVP now to join us for the first Technology Salon Bangkok. We'll have three thought leaders to guide us in a discussion on when, how, and with whom we should use games in development: We’ll have hot coffee and catered breakfast for a morning rush, but seating is limited. So RSVP ASAP to be confirmed for attendance: once we reach our 30-person capacity there will be a waiting list.
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Games for Development
April Technology Salon Bangkok
Thursday, April 23rd
9:00 - 11:00 a.m.
Bangkok, Thailand
RSVP is required for attendance
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About the Technology Salon


The Technology Salonâ„¢ is an intimate, informal, and in person, discussion between information and communication technology experts and international development professionals, with a focus on both:
  • technology's impact on donor-sponsored technical assistance delivery, and
  • private enterprise driven economic development, facilitated by technology.
Our meetings are lively conversations, not boring presentations. Attendance is capped at 30 people - and frank participation with ideas, opinions, and predictions is actively encouraged. 

It's also a great opportunity to meet others motivated to employ technology to solve vexing development problems. Join us today!
 
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