Put down your thoughts on paper • What is the common theme across the two papers? • Describe their initial goals (Digital Green and one case from the Brewer paper) • Did the goals change in the design process? • Who are the stakeholders (Digital Green and one case from the Brewer paper • What are the values of the designers? • How did the technologies come to be used?
ICTs for Developing countries (ICT4D) Nithya Sambasivan
Global poverty • Condition of not being able to afford basic human needs • such as healthcare, clean water or sanitation • Often measured economically • Can also be measured through welfare and basic needs • Inequality and vulnerability
What is a “developing” country? • “Developing” country: United Nations Human Development Index (HDI) score <.8 • 99 countries • The HDI is comprised of • Life expectancy at birth • Adult literacy (age 15 and above) • Combined gross enrollment ration in education • Gross domestic product (GDP) per capita • Gini coefficient • Measure of inequality of income or wealth
HDI distribution The greener the better
GINI co-efficient The greener the better
GINI co-efficient The greener the better What is this telling us?
GINI co-efficient The greener the better What is this telling us? Poverty is a global phenomenon
ICT4D—a historical view • 1998 World Development Report • Formalized in 2000 United Nations Millennium Summit "ensure that the benefits of new technologies, especially information and communication technologies are available to all".
ICT4D • ICTs: telephone, television, computer, or community radio • In the device or “cloud” [Toyama and Dias] • Typically for “development”—poverty reduction, healthcare, climate change • Can also include free expression or entertainment
How is it different? • Designing for • A different ethos (social and cultral values) • Low literacies • Disruptive connections • Low incomes • Areas lacking basic welfare and infrastructure at times • Traditional western techniques of understanding, information visualization, or evaluation do not work
Mobile repair store in Mumbai, India India: fastest growing mobile market (517 million as of Dec 2009) Image courtesy: Nimmi Rangaswamy
A household in a slum community in Bangalore Dynamic sites of consumption
Masai men in Kenya using mobiles The number of mobile phone users in Africa exceeded 370 million in 2008 Image: http://www.environmentteam.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/02/Uganda_Receives_Kasana__The_Solar_Powered_Phone_xlarge.jpg
What are we doing here? • We: • designers, technologists, policy makers • Working towards empowerment & reduction of inequality • Understand current and potential technologies • in solving socio-economic problems
“To create educational opportunities for the world's poorest children by providing each child with a rugged, low-cost, low-power, connected laptop with content and software designed for collaborative, joyful, self-empowered learning. “ • (OLPC website) • “The world’s poorest two billion people need desperately need healthcare, not laptops” • (Bill Gates) From Kentaro Toyama’s slides
Why technology for development? • It is a means and not the end • Is technology always the solution? • Why computing technology when other sources are free or low-cost • social networks, cyber cafes, television, radio, etc • Information is not always the key • social, political, and cultural structures prevent access and/or practice • Well-designed technologies must not exacerbate existing divides Some text from Kentaro Toyama
Framing the problem Case: Digital Green • National: Increasing debt and decreasing returns have forced some farmers to sell cheap and commit suicide in some cases [NSSO 2005] • Inadequate knowledge about farming • Local: Green Foundation working with 20 villages
Initial goals • To design an information system • catered to good practices in farming • Evaluate the use of videos featuring NGO staff, experts, and farmers • Increase in productivity through baseline
Initial assumptions • Videos may be interesting and viable • Supporting infrastructure could be sponsored and introduced • Videos increase in knowledge and relevant information • Increased knowledge better farming practices • Better farming practices higher profits and less deaths
Stakeholders • Microsoft Research • Green Foundation • Later on, Digital Green Foundation • Farmer users • Field officers
The design process • Iterative • Understanding: Ethnographic investigation (200 days) • Initial roll-outs • Farmers liked videos of similar people • Demand for demos, testimonials, entertainment • Seasonal preference • Mediation was key • Demand for repeated sessions
The design process • Participatory videos • Overview, itemization, step-by-step instructions, benefits, Q&A • Indian idol • Verifiability • Video editors • Mediated instruction • Regimented sequencing
What happened later? • Spun off to become the Digital Green NGO • Built capacity for Green Foundation • Expanded to others parts
The big issues in Design for Development
Cultural differences • Cultural and language barriers between designers and users • Gender, race, skin colour, or age affect access • Socio-cultural norms may be different • Sitting on the floor • Wearing traditional clothes to reduce power levels
Literacies • What is literacy? • ability to identify, understand, interpret, create, communicate, compute and use printed and written materials associated with varying contexts [UNESCO]. • There are many forms of literacies • Textual, numeric, digital, symbolic • Varying degrees • 95% of websites are in English
Interface design Case: Text-free UIs [Medhi] • User interfaces for non-literate users • Pen or touch interface • Liberal use of imagery • No text • Semi-abstracted cartoons • Voice annotation • Aggressive use of mouse-over functionality • Consistent help icon
Nouns vs. verbs “Kitchen sink” or “washing dishes”? “Pot” or “cooking”? Courtesy: Indrani Medhi
Cultural differences An urban family user? • Will a recycle bin make sense where it is unheard of? • Colours mean differently in different countries [Badre] Courtesy: Indrani Medhi
Design Original design Revised design Courtesy: Indrani Medhi
Ethics • Whose notion of development? • Should “development” always be instrumental?
Ethics • Whose notion of development? • Should “development” always be instrumental? • Appropriation of telecenter as photo-shopping, astrology service • Is watching Youtube or online social networking not useful? • Brazil and India are the largest consumers of Orkut • Television led to increased resistance of domestic abuse in India and family planning in Brazil • Listen to instrumental, healthcare programs on radio after a long day’s work, anyone?
Sustainability • Enhancing long-term capability after project ends • Case: SARI (Sustainable Access in Rural India) • Collaboration with MIT, IIT, GaTech, Harvard, and n-Logue • Privately-owned in 32 cases • Lack of adequate technical support, new and relevant content, and end of institutional partnerships
Marketing for the user • How is a product created for low-income consumers marketed? • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TJwR9jLjTTE • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JEPNiZNkhtc • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nEZ30K5dBWU • What did you notice?
Marketing for the user • Lifestyle-based marketing • Family values • Truck driver • Entertaining and creative • Catering to social class and aspiration • Does not explicitly market as a “poor man’s phone” • Conveys through choice of characters
Marketing for the “giver” Case: Kiva http://www.kiva.org/
Marketing for the “giver” • Bay area users (green leaf, white bg) • Design to extract money (PayPal, amount raised) • Establishing “legitimacy” • Scams versus appropriate giving • Establishes “cause” • Entrepreneurship appears “useful” and “a way out of poverty” • Poor communities • The small amount of money can make a big “difference”
Capacity building • Designers leave • Training local people in usage and repair • Expensive to provide immediate assistance • Public demonstrations, media, word-of-mouth
Capacity building Case: One Laptop Per Child • Beautiful design • Tough, open source software, low energy use, an • Techno-centric • Not wrong, but irrelevant content • Rich, American kids != poor, Ecuadoriaskids • MIT Ecuador, not MIT Ecuador • Requires new skills and literacies • No capacity building • 10,000 laptops per country
Value systems • Personal, private ownership and usage • Communal, shared, and negotiated usage • Women as empowered or independent • Perhaps not everywhere • Independent use • Intermediated use also
Value systems Case: Multipoint • 10 student per computer in certain rural schools in India Source: Udai Singh Pawar
Solution: Multi-mouse Source: Udai Singh Pawar
Despite the challenges • The promise is great • Technology penetration ++ • Evidence of success exists • Fishermen in Kerala • Digital Green • Kelsa+ • Humbling • Towards a better world!
Questions? </Le fin>