Saturday, 17 December 2011

Latest ICT Developments in Asia Pacific

"Today, the Internet is the primary instrument for communicating and sharing information around the world, and more so with each passing day.
"If previously, the key challenges included infrastructure, connectivity, and access, today the key issue is human capital development through education," said Shahid Akhtar, DirAP's Editor-in-Chief.
Mr Akhtar was in Singapore this week for a three-day DirAP authors' meeting.
With him were some 50 experts from government, academe, industry, and civil society from more than 30 countries. They were meeting to brainstorm as they review a draft of the DirAP 2009-2010.
"The DirAP biennial is not only an ICT publication; it is about a network and Asian networking so that experiences are shared. It's an opportunity to learn from each other," added Mr Akhtar.
The biennial Digital Review of Asia Pacific project is coordinated by Dr Claude-Yves Charron, who is Secretary-General of ORBICOM (the Network of UNESCO Chairs in Communications), and also Vice-Rector of the University of Quebec in Montreal, Canada. 
The project is supported by the International Development Research Centre of Canada, which is represented on the DirAP Board by Ms Maria Ng Lee Hoon, an ICT specialist, based at IDRC's Southeast and East Asia Regional Office in Singapore.
It is a comprehensive guide to the state-of-practice and trends in information and communication technologies for development (ICT4D) in Asia -Pacific.
Their target audiences include policymakers, ICT professionals, and academics, not only in the Asia-Pacific region but around the world.
The 2009-2010 publication will be the fourth edition of the biennial DirAP series.
It is expected to cover themes such as ICTs, education and the Millennium Development Goals, distance education, ICTs and non-formal education, private-public partnership in ICTs for education, and knowledge and innovation.
The review, to be released in the first quarter of 2009, will also include two overview chapters - one on emerging ICT4D technologies and their relationships to markets and communities, and the other, on regulatory approaches to ICTs and best practices.
The author of one of the overview chapters, Mr Rajesh Sreenivasan - a lawyer from Singapore - said the public sector could encourage the development of ICTs with tax incentives, and studies into intellectual property legislation and enforcement. Also important, he stressed, was the need to train a special group of people to understand these issues.
He said this when asked about what the public and private sectors could do to enhance ICT development.
As for the private sector,, Mr Sreenivasan opined that they could support the government by giving feedback from the ground, and be more pro-active in creating new technologies.
 by Vivian Chiam, International Development Research Center

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