Published on January 25, 2009
D 2 Digital Democracy Working with local partners to connect people through new technologies that encourage education, communication and participation. Monday, January 26, 2009 1
Test Case: Burma Population: 60 million Those in Exile: 4 million Less than 1% mobile phone market penetration KEY INDICATORS worst best GDP per capita, PPP (constant 2000 international $) ........ 1,446 3.50 Life expectancy at birth (years) ............................................. 61 4.19 Literacy rate (% of people age 15+) ..................................... 90 6.00 Human development index (out of 177)............................... 130 3.52 Rule of law (out of 208) ...................................................... 202 1.87 Voice and accountability (out of 208) .................................. 208 0.69 Digital opportunity index (out of 180) .................................. 176 1.36 Internet users (% of population) ........................................... 0.1 3.07 KHRG 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 D Source (by indicator): IMF 2006; World Bank 2006a, 2006a; UNDP 2006; World Bank 2006c, 2006c; ITU 2006, 2004 OpenNet Initiative, Internet Filtering in Burma in 2005: A Country Study, 2 at http://opennet.net/studies/burma/. Monday, January 26, 2009 2
Our Research Overcoming Obstacles, Creating Opportunities Youth Perspectives from the Thai-Burma Border www.newwordsmedia.com Youth Perspectives from the Thai-Burma Border D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 3
www.newwordsmedia.com Key ﬁnding Young Burmese with access to the internet were more likely to identify themselves as activists D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 4
Burma and its Borders In Burma the cost of a “normal” GSM sim card is 2.5 million kyat. This equals approximately $2000 on the black market conversion rate. At the ofﬁcial rate this is approximately $393,400. A new pre-paid sim costs Dollars Local Currency between $20-$50 US dollars. 4.18 250 Bangladesh 7.77 300 India (Delhi) 6.84 200 Thailand Use restricted to 1 month D 14.6 100 China (Yunnan) 2 50 Burma Monday, January 26, 2009 5
Bangladesh: Mobile possibilities - Large populations in refugee camps - stateless population - Extensive mobile penetration along border allows for reporting and monitoring www.newwordsmedia.com D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 6
India: Challenges and opportunities - Relative freedom of expression - Tech support in Delhi - Isolation along border www.newwordsmedia.com D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 7
China: Land of the Free? - Borders Kachin and Shan States in Burma - Ruili: largest Chinese city on border - Contact with outside world via China and Chinese technology - Relatively more internet freedom “I think, to me, the China web is totally free.” - Burmese male activist, 26 D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 8
Thailand: Increased Opportunities In Thailand, internet access is frequent. There, we found a correlation between access to internet and self- identiﬁcation as an activist Since then, internet access has grown, including affordable and reliable GPRS on mobiles D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 9
Solutions “I came to study here, I can use computer, I can use email, and I also learn something from internet, I also know more experience.” – Male Student, age 23 http://www.ﬂickr.com/photos/whiteafrican/2736565604/ 1. Education 2. Inter-ethnic dialogue 3. Communication technology D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 10
Virtual Community Center Similar to traditional community centers, VCC is a place for community groups to come together. D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 11
Virtual Community Center Community groups can: Have an easy web presence ommunity Community Learn about each others work Group Group Easily partner Receive support Host discussions Overcome distance Overcome different languages Secure Sharing: Citizen Citizen Citizen Messages Data Pictures Phone Computer Computer Videos D 2 Open Source Monday, January 26, 2009 12
Virtual Community Center - Mobile A network for map-based micro-blogging, which will be used by individuals and organizations along Burma's borders. Handheld Human Rights: Engage human rights groups to communicate with one another and incorporate their data into the VCC. Crowdsourcing the Constitution: Conduct ﬁlm interviews with political www.newwordsmedia.com leaders and engage citizens to respond to and debate key issues through the VCC. D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 13
Virtual Community Center - Mobile D 2 http://www.developmentseed.org/ Monday, January 26, 2009 14
Project Einstein “Because Einstein was a refugee but could still do great things” Digital Pen Pals - Photography-based participatory education program linking American students with refugee youth overseas. D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 15
Project Einstein: Digital Pen Pals Peace Culture Let’s Discuss: Happiness History USA Bangladesh Ideas Pictures Let’s Exchange: Lessons Culture Resettled Refugees Photo Books Youth in with American youth Let’s Create: Slideshows refugee camps in US schools Videos D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 16
Cultural Landscape An interactive map where people can describe the past, present and future of their communities •Po Po •Shan •30 years old •This is me as a girl in Myanmar during 2004. I sold masks to survive. www.newwordsmedia.com D 2 http://www.developmentseed.org/ Monday, January 26, 2009 17
Problem Solution Regional instability Cross-border communication World’s longest running civil Networking among war traditionally divided groups Rampant use of child soldiers Providing 21st century education Over 3.5 million internally displaced persons and Connecting refugees with refugees their resettled communities Severe censorship Freedom of information D 2 Monday, January 26, 2009 18
D 2 Digital Democracy Working with local partners to connect people through new technologies that encourage education, communication and participation. Mark Belinsky - MBelinsky@dtwo.org - +1-347-439-8431 Emily Jacobi - EJacobi@dtwo.org - +1-347-328-3110 DTWO.ORG Monday, January 26, 2009 19
“Concepts such as truth, justice and compassion cannot be dismissed as trite when these are often the only bulwarks which stand against ruthless power.” -Aung San Suu Kyi Nobel Peace Prize 1991 Monday, January 26, 2009 20
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