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Int'l Conference on IT, Communications and Development

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Coming soon, but if any of you happen to be in the neighborhood of Nepal! Further info at:

International Conference on Information Technology, Communications and Development
29th -30th November, 2001

Kathmandu, Nepal
Hotel Yak and Yeti

In the years since the development of the world wide web, an increasing number of people also in developing countries have been using information communication technology (ICT) to bring about change in their work methods and environment and to speed up the development process.

Development organizations, NGOs, media houses, government agencies, schools and many individuals make use of ICT in one way or another. What are the results? What is the context between ICT and development? Is the www so powerful in development as many people think it is? Are the priorities of big development organizations right when it comes to using ICT or would the better money be spent on other projects? Can ICT really a make difference in the poorest parts of the world? What are the prerequisites to apply ICT in remote areas in Nepal, for example? What impact has ICT on society? Which are the lessons to be learnt and experiences to be shared?

What policies are required, especially in developing countries, to facilitate the use and access to ICT? There are also questions regarding how global networking of like-minded people through the web can make a difference in policy advocacy and social equity.

As the technology advances, the gap between the information haves and have-nots is widening. The digital divide becomes more and more apparent.

To highlight and discuss these issues, the Friedrich-Ebert- Stiftung(FES) in Nepal has planned this international conference.

The main objective is to learn from one another and also to draw up recommendations for better policies and better projects that benefit people, particularly in developing countries.

The conference will have five main topics for presentation and discussion:

- Information Communication Technology
- Communication, Media and Internet
- Using ICT in Development
- Web and society
- Policy and Legislation

A. Information Communication Technology

This session will concentrate on technical aspects of information technology. The speakers will present how the technology has grown in recent years, and what are the issues that relate to the case of developing countries. Topics are:

- Appropriate and cost effective Internet technologies
- E-commerce in developing countries
- Equity of Access
- Communication and Networking Infrastructure
- Interactive, Multimedia, Innovative Contents
- Access to technology.

B. Communication, Media and Internet

Journalists and media organizations have a great role in informing and educating the public. They are also instrumental in raising issues and bringing out success stories. FES also has a long involvement of supporting media development in Nepal. It is important to discuss communication, media and Internet inter- relationships. Topics are:

- Using IT in media houses and by media practitioners for education, research, and dissemination. (Nepali experiences / foreign experiences)
- How information from Internet can be provided to the public through media
- Internet radio/radio as a conduit between Internet and its listeners

C. Using ICT in Development

All over the world, experiences have shown that information technology has become part of the development process. Networking between donors, beneficiaries and development workers (change agents) can accelerate and improve the delivery of programs. The web can be used, among others, as a forum for online discussion and sharing information and experiences. There are virtually unlimited possibilities. We welcome proposals from the donor community, development and media practitioners, ICT professionals and other experts. Possible topics are:

- How do INGOs/NGOs use Internet Technology?
- ICT in development and poverty alleviation
- How ICT can be helpful for development efforts in health, population, employment, environment, youth, gender, family planning and social issues.
- Online networking forums and their effectiveness.
- Demonstration of successful projects
- Development portals

D. Web and Society

Discussion will be on the general implications of the web on society. Issues like digital divide, language barriers will be part of the focus. Topics are:

- Digital Divide
- Local Language Computing
- Preserving indigenous knowledge by using ICT
- Hierarchical information control in society.

E. Policy and Legislation

At present, many countries in the world are in the process of crafting legislation relating to the cyber world. Information technology policy together with communications policy shapes the government's actions on Internet, communications and media. Topics are:

- Regulations, policy and governance (including provisions for cyber crimes).
- E-governance and government information distribution
- Intellectual Property Rights (including WTO provisions)

We value inputs made available to the conference and invite papers and proposals for presentation. The conference will be attended by development and media practitioners as well as ICT experts from Nepal and other countries.

Dr. Alfred Diebold
Resident Representative
Friedrich Ebert Stiftung
Nepal Office
Tel: 00977 1 522526, 542406
Fax: 00977 1 521101
Visit us at

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Last updated: November 12, 2001 in Hot Metal Pro 6.0