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[liberationtech] Internews reports on mobile technology impact & use in Nigeria & Kenya

Yosem Companys companys at
Thu Mar 7 12:01:18 PST 2013

From: Anahi <anahiayala at>

Hey all,

I wanted to flag to this list two research reporta that Internews recently 
published on mobile technology.

One is a report titled "Mesh-Casting news in the Port Harcourt waterfront". The 
“Mesh-Casting” pilot project aimed to completely democratize the flow of 
information and move it between phones directly, providing a less expensive 
and more connected communication alternative for citizens based on the use 
of the Serval System. Funded by Internews Center for Innovation & Learning 
grant, the Media for Justice Project of the Centre for Environment, Human 
Rights and Development (CEHRD) implemented this pilot project to provide 
communications solutions for a group of activists, citizen journalists and 
human rights monitors working in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. The 
decision to use mesh-casting technology grew from a realization that the 
communities involved in resistance to demolition policies by 
the government were not able to send information out of their communities 
to NGOs such as Amnesty International because of lack of finances and poor 
access to Internet. This pilot project provided a communication solution 
for this group of human rights advocate. 

The report is a study of the impact of the use of the Mesh network 
technology and the perceived security of the system as opposed to the 
actual one. One of the main conclusion of the report was that the 
mesh-casting technology appears to have the greatest potential to enable 
data movement within high-density communities. However the current 
available range of the technology severely limits the potential for high 
data movement between communities and those outside the community as the 
farthest current range is only approximately 60 meters between two phones 
before the signal becomes too weak to use. 

You can find the complete report here:

The second report is titled "A feasibility study in engaging 
frontline healthcare workers in using mobile technology" and it is a study 
of the use of mobile technology by Community Health Workers in slums in the 
urban areas in Kenya. In light of the vital services these frontline health 
workers provide in Kenya, the Internews Center for Innovation & Learning commissioned 
this study to explore the potential for CHWs and TBAs to use an interactive 
mobile platform to improve the dissemination of health information in their 
communities. As envisioned, such an “e-health” project would rely on mobile 
phone texting and would be implemented in partnership with one or more 
community radio stations and other local organizations. Internews’ Kenya 
office and the research team jointly determined two initial research sites 
to capture data from two kinds of marginalized communities: the Nairobi 
slum of Korogocho, and the small town of Matungu in Mumias District in 
rural western Kenya. Researchers gathered quantitative and qualitative data on 
the roles of CHWs and TBAs and their use of mobile technology in relation 
to their work, through focus group discussions, questionnaires and 
one-on-one interviews.

You can find the complete report here:

Hoping that this may be useful for the members of this community, please 
feel free to share comments or similar resources with me directly!

My best,

*Anahi Ayala Iacucci* 

Senior Innovation Advisor - Internews Center for Research & Learning

aayala at | *Mobile 1* (+1) 202-550-1537 

*Mobile 2* (+39) 345-805-3067 | *Skype* anahiii | *Twitter* @anahi_ayala <> | @info_innovation<>
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