Technology Salon

Global Sponsor

a discussion at the intersection of technology and development

Meeting Synopsis

  • screen-shot

    I had a chance to spend a morning last week at a roundtable discussion on technology and structural discrimination, as part of the Technology Salon events. The conversation brought together activists, organizers, technologists, and few international development types like myself, though many in the room blurred those boundaries. Technology provided a filter for the discussion,…

  • us-tech-issues

    Our January 21st, 2015, Technology Salon examined the role of technology in addressing structural discrimination in the US. We were hosted by the Brooklyn Community Foundation (BCF), whose Director of Community Leadership, Tynesha McHarris, served as a lead discussant. Courtney D. Cogburn Assistant Professor of Social Work at Columbia University and Senior Advisor to the…

  • olpc-paraguay-1

    “Don’t let the tech wag the MEL dog.” This quote sums up the conversation from the London Tech Salon focused on “How can ICTs improve Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning (MEL)?” Essentially it means that when exploring the applicability of ICT we have to ensure we start from what MEL is setting out to achieve and…

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  • digital-id

    Recently, the Technology Salon in Washington DC asked if Digital Economies Will Empower or Enslave the Next 4 Billion Mobile Users? While there was a general recognition of the lack of digital literacy, and the disadvantages people face when trying to understand the costs and benefits of having an online presence, opinions were split on…

  • gather-data

    Is ICT4D Slowly Dying or Slowly Changing?

    Washington DC | By on February 24, 2015 | Comments Off

    At the September 23 Technology Salon, attendees faced a question: Is ICT4D slowly dying or slowly changing? Earlier this year, James BonTempo, Director of ICT and Innovation at Johns Hopkins CCP wrote that ICT4D is slowly dying. ICT4D enthusiasts had a lot to say in response (don’t miss Part II of BonTempo’s blog post). While…

  • girls empowerment

    Do Girl Ads Detract From Girls Empowerment?

    New York | By on February 22, 2015 | Comments Off

    Our August Technology Salon in New York City (TSNYC) was a stimulating and deep discussion on whether ‘girl advertising’ detracts from girls empowerment. The topic surfaced after a Facebook conversation about the rise in commercials about girls and women’s empowerment such as Always’ “Like a Girl,” Verizon’s “Inspire her Mind,” and Pantene’s “Stop Saying Sorry.” There…

  • ICT4Education

    If you had 90 seconds to answer a question you did not know the answer to, what would you do? Admit to the gap in your knowledge? Take a guess at the answer? Or Google the answer on your phone? The majority of people would opt for the later. Technology has not only changed the…

  • gather-data

    Recently, we had the 175th Technology Salon in Washington, DC, this one focused on How Can ICTs Improve Our Ebola Response? Be sure to sign up to get invited to our next event. In the lively morning-long discussion with 35 key thought leaders and decision makers from across the technology and development sectors, we came…

  • tech-salon-helsinki

    Technology Salon Helsinki kicked off as part of Slush, a fantastic start-up and technology event that takes place with about 10,000 people every Fall in the Finnish capital. Slush added a social impact stream for the first time this year, making it a good fit for Technology Salon. Plan Finland organized the Salon and Netlight…

  • cash-transfer1-300x200

    NGOs and social service organizations are increasingly turning to mobile technology as a tool for designing and delivering services to the poor, whether in health, education or any other sector. And of course a major element of these services is often the delivery of cash transfers, for which mobile money can play a critical role….

  • unhcr_mobile

    Ethics is an ever-present theme in Development and one which is sometimes overlooked in ICT4D/Technology for Development – a field in which people can sometimes get carried away with the supposed transformational potential of technology. So it is refreshing to arrive at a Technology Salon explicitly setting out to discuss these complex ethical issues. Lead…

  • ole-rwanda

    Technology Salon NYC had another banner year of great discussions. To cap it off and start the 2015 series of events, we had a unique Salon. We shared our hopes and fears for 2015, with three amazing lead discussants to guide the conversation: Felicity Ruby, long-time activist and currently ThoughtWorks’ Director of Global Internet Policy;…

  • proxy.php

    We have all seen the pretty pictures of children playing with fancy new gadgets, and while the photos are uplifting, do they really signify progress? Does the introduction of new technology, specifically information and communication technologies like mobile phones, computers, and the Internet really accelerate the social and economic advancement of the developing world? Will…

  • kinshasa

    Congratulations! Ghana was just deemed to be the 2nd most lawful country in Africa (behind Botswana) by the World Justice Project. While this is a laudable achievement, just how much technology was involved? Did we need Ghana Open Data? Or can Ghanaians enjoy good governance without technology solutions getting in the way? Please RSVP now…

  • slush-salon

    Access to mobile phones has exploded across the globe. The availability of smart phones and the mobile web is also increasing rapidly. This opens up exciting opportunities to reach the “base of the pyramid” with products and services that could improve the well-being of millions of people living on less than $2 per day. At…

  • drones-for-development

    How Can We Use Drones for Development?

    Nairobi | By on October 15, 2014 | Comments Off

    We all know the military and surveillance applications of drones, and we can dream of Amazon Prime Air, but how can unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) be used to improve peoples’ lives? What innovations with remotely piloted aircraft will accelerate social and economic development? Could we deliver medicines or vital packages via drone? What about finding…

  • panzagar

    Internet access, in particular via mobile technology, gives citizens a medium through which to exercise their political voice. It can be used to challenge preexisting power systems and is a potential game-changer in countries with undemocratic regimes. As we’ve seen with the Arab Spring, citizens can use Internet tools to place the fates of governments…

  • unnamed

    Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) and development organizations need each other, but few preexisting partnerships have yielded success stories worth boasting about. MNOs offer scale and an established structure for services, while development organizations offer unique insight and connections to “untapped” markets such as rural populations and women.

  • ICT4Ag

    ICT4Ag in Ethiopia: The Three S’s

    Washington DC | By on July 1, 2014 | Comments Off

    “ICT is not the silver bullet. Find what works and do that.” This idea came out of the Tech Salon “What Can We Learn from ICT4Ag in Ethiopia” held last week, where ICT4Ag leaders discussed some of the current initiatives aimed at feeding 92 million people in Ethiopia.

  • burma-ict

    Myanmar will be going online fast in the next 2 years. Right now it has the same mobile phone usage as North Korea, Eritrea, and Cuba – less than 10% – yet with Teleno, Ooredoo, and Myanmar Post and Telecommunication set to race each other to get all Burmese a mobile phone, expect the country…