Mobile for Development Blog

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Up to 50,000 people from rural communities gain access to mobile coverage through newly deployed network sites in Ghana and Uganda

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The Connected Society Innovation Fund for Rural Connectivity, which is funded by UK aid from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO), was set up to expand digital inclusion in rural areas through innovative new technology solutions. We are delighted that the ...

COVID-19 and digital humanitarian action: Three early lessons

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This blog is part of a series exploring COVID-19 and its impact on digital humanitarian action. More findings related to current trends, risks and the path forward can be found in our report launched today. In humanitarian contexts, COVID-19 has had a particularly severe ...

Mobile for Humanitarian Innovation: Our impact in 2020

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We publish the GSMA Mobile for Humanitarian Innovation (M4H) programme’s annual report today, as we near the one year mark of COVID-19 gripping the globe. The pandemic has impacted lives heavily, and has increased those needing humanitarian assistance and protection by ...

Behind the Mobile Stories / Historias Móviles project

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In March 2020, the GSMA and the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) asked Venezuelan refugees and migrants in Barranquilla, Colombia, to tell us about the importance of mobile connectivity in their lives. They shared their own stories using the medium of their choice, with control ...

User Journeys in Burundi: A conversation with Ground Truth Solutions

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In 2019, the GSMA Mobile for Humanitarian Innovation (M4H) team worked with Ground Truth Solutions in Burundi to understand users’ experience of receiving cash assistance through mobile money. The work used human-centred design (HCD) methodologies to empathise with users and ...

Artificial Intelligence and Start-Ups in Low- and Middle-Income Countries – Key insights and findings

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The Landscape In 2020, the GSMA mapped 450 start-ups by sector in alignment with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) across Sub-Saharan Africa, North Africa and South Asia and Southeast Asia. In this video, we highlight some of the key findings on the landscape of ...

Five key insights from evaluating a GSMA EdTech grantee in Côte d’Ivoire

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Côte d’Ivoire has made significant strides in improving access to education for all children; however key challenges still exist to keep students in school and ensure they receive a quality education. While primary school enrolment rates have increased to nearly 100 per ...

Once upon a time… and the importance of telling new stories

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We all need a good story once in a while. I had the opportunity over the recent winter break to dive into the realm of old folk and fairy tales, journeys of characters leaving their homes behind to go on an adventure, overcoming obstacles, being patient and being good, ...

The growth of renewable energy for mobile towers: The role of eco-system players and innovative technology

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At the end of 2020 GSMA CleanTech published ‘Renewable Energy for Mobile Towers’, a report that examined the current state of the mobile tower industry, how it has changed over recent years, and the barriers that still need to be overcome before the majority of off-grid and ...

Humanitarian Adaptation: M4H Innovation Fund grantees’ responses to Covid-19

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In the past year, Covid-19 has impacted the daily lives of billions of people, while also exacerbating the inequalities faced by marginalised populations. Already isolated communities, such as those experiencing gender-based violence, have experienced higher levels of risk. ...

Digital solutions for pastoralists during COVID-19

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The livestock sector offers substantial opportunities to smallholder farmers for livelihood improvements, poverty reduction and improved food security and nutrition. It is currently estimated that livestock farming contributes to the livelihoods of almost 1.3 billion people ...

The importance of digital literacy to access sexual and reproductive health content via mobile internet

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We know that mobile internet content can bring invaluable benefits to millions of women worldwide. But developing relevant e-health services for women is not only about making information and services available through an app, a website, SMS or USSD channels; it’s also ...

Introducing the new GSMA CleanTech video on ‘Renewable Energy for Mobile Towers’

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In September 2020 at GSMA Thrive Africa, the GSMA CleanTech programme published a report on renewable energy – ‘Renewable Energy for Mobile Towers’. This short video summarises the key trends highlighted in the report. As the industry implements strategies to achieve net ...

CoNUA: Robust data enabling development of appropriate and equitable mobile-enabled humanitarian interventions

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The events of 2020 made clear that mobile technology is a powerful tool for facilitating the delivery and improving the efficacy of humanitarian assistance. The restriction of social contact caused by the coronavirus pandemic led to an urgent shift in humanitarian ...

Improving farmers’ access to credit: A new GSMA partnership in Papua New Guinea

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In September 2020, with support from the Australian Government (DFAT), the GSMA launched a joint Call To Action (JCTA) aimed at agribusinesses, agritech companies and financial services providers (FSPs) in Papua New Guinea to identify a consortium that will work towards ...

The Voice ID Project: Verifying recipients of mobile money supported humanitarian cash transfers in Somaliland

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A common requirement in humanitarian cash and voucher assistance (CVA) is recipient verification at the household level. Verification serves two purposes. First, it ensures that the intended recipient of the cash is the right one, and second, it provides an audit trail for ...

KaiOS, enabling accessible and affordable internet for all with the GSMA’s MISTT module

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KaiOS is a mobile operating system for so-called smart feature phones. With this new category of phones, we at KaiOS aim to help close the digital divide by overcoming one of the main barriers to internet access: the affordability of devices and data. But solving the ...

Immunisation in low-income countries (LICs): How mobile and frontier technologies can help strengthen the vaccine supply chains

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The fight against COVID-19 has seen vaccine development moving at a fast pace, with more than 170 different vaccines in trials as of November 2020. While developed markets are preparing for the vaccine roll-out, the LICs are dealing with an already existing immunisation ...

Mobile money-enabled remittances are a lifeline for families of migrant workers

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COVID-19 has been cruel to us all, but the economic impact of the pandemic has been especially severe on migrant workers and their families in the developing world: the earnings these already economically vulnerable groups have been able to send home fell last year by 20%, ...

Defining our strategic partnerships

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In 2019, I travelled to Uganda to visit refugee camps in the northern part of the country to get a first-hand experience understanding how mobile technology could help these displaced communities improve their lives. There I met Joseph (not his real name). Joseph is in his ...