Mobile for Development Blog

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Making mobile internet more accessible for people with reading or writing difficulties

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Across low- and middle- income countries (LMICs), 3.4 billion people are still not accessing mobile internet despite living within the footprint of a mobile broadband network[1]. According to the latest GSMA Consumer Survey, for people who are aware of mobile internet, ...

Impactful Innovations: Insights from evaluating Cyber Food

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This post is part of a two-part blog series on a programme for Scaling Innovation and Supporting Entrepreneurship across the Indo-Pacific during the pandemic. This programme was funded by the Australian Government’s Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and ...

Impactful Innovation: Insights from evaluating ATEC

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This post is part of a two-part blog series on a programme for Scaling Innovation and Supporting Entrepreneurship across the Indo-Pacific during the pandemic. This programme was funded by the Australian Government’s Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) and ...

Mobile money can drive the financial inclusion of persons with disabilities in Ghana

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Over the past decade, the proliferation of mobile money across Sub-Saharan Africa has been a catalyst for the financial inclusion of millions of those previously underserved by traditional banks. More than half of the globe’s active mobile money accounts are now located in ...

The Climate Crisis: Mobile-enabled solutions to address the growing humanitarian challenge

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World leaders recently gathered in Glasgow at COP26 to accelerate action towards addressing climate change. They’ve come from around the world to grapple with the most pressing existential crisis of our time with an urgent need to reduce global emissions. No matter how ...

Starting Out Smart: Gender-Smart Strategies for Start-up Success

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When pandemic restrictions locked down Port Moresby (Papua New Guinea’s capital), many women absorbed additional unpaid care work, making it more difficult to do food shopping during the safer daylight hours. Shalom Warrey saw an opportunity and created “At Your Doorstep” ...

Using digital tools to improve the commercial sustainability of container-based sanitation models

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The number of people living in informal settlements is expected to reach three billion by 2030. At the same time, two billion people currently lack even a basic level of sanitation service. With urbanisation accelerating across low- and middle-income countries (LMICs), ...

The GSMA Innovation Fund for Climate Resilience and Adaptation: Open now

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This week, during the Science and Innovation day at COP26, the GSMA, the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) announced the launch of the GSMA Innovation Fund for Climate Resilience and ...

COP26 highlights the need to transform smallholder agriculture: Can digital solutions be an enabler

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Two years since COP25, during which the impacts of climate change have become ever more evident, the focus now shifts to Glasgow for COP26 and what many are seeing as the last chance to take meaningful action. Smallholder agriculture is one of the most vulnerable sectors to ...

Trust, misinformation and the role of technology in the localisation of information: Five key lessons

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As COVID-19 has illustrated, in the context of a pandemic almost nothing is as important as timely, trustworthy, and actionable information. Due to the circumstances, mobile technology came to play a key role in disseminating information over the last 18 months. And while ...

Driving the conversation about Government–Innovator Partnerships on Urban Mobility and Waste Management in Lagos, Nigeria

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Utopia, an innovation group focused on emergent cities, and the GSMA Digital Utilities programme have teamed up to organise a virtual workshop where digital urban innovators and urban policymakers in Lagos can have a conversation on how to bolster government– start-up ...

Thinking Outside the Box: Vodacom Tanzania Agri Digitisation Journey

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This is the fifth blog in a series of blogs introducing the grantees and key partners supported by the GSMA Innovation Fund for Digitisation of Agricultural Value Chains. In 2020, Vodacom Tanzania was awarded a grant under the GSMA Innovation Fund for Digitisation of ...

Pay-As-You-Go smart assets increase farmers’ climate resilience

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Innovation SunCulture Pay-As-You-Go solar irrigation systems Partners SunCulture, Energy Access Ventures, Microsoft, REEEP, MIT, PG Impact, GSMA, EDF, Shell Foundation, SNV, USAID, EEP Africa, Mercy Corps, DPI, Acumen Capital Partners, Self Help Africa Smallholder farmers ...

Closing the weather data gap in LMICs using mobile networks

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Innovation Rainfall observation using Commercial Microwave Links (CMLs) Partners GSMA, Dialog Axiata Sri Lanka, MTN Nigeria, Digicel Papua New Guinea, Wageningen University & Research, Royal Dutch Meteorological Institute (KNMI), TU Delft, Hyds, FCDO, DFAT Reliable ...

The state of mobile internet connectivity in Sub-Saharan Africa: why addressing the barriers to mobile internet use matters now more than ever

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The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the digitisation of economies and societies around the world. Mobile internet adoption continued to increase in 2020, despite the economic recession. By the end of 2020, 28% of the Sub-Saharan African population was connected the ...

The state of mobile internet connectivity in South Asia: the coverage gap is narrowing but the usage gap remains the largest in the world

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In this blog, we present highlights of the State of Mobile Internet Connectivity in South Asia. Mobile internet connectivity has continued to grow in many countries across South Asia during 2020. Despite, or perhaps partly driven by, the COVID-19 pandemic, 34% of the ...

The State of Mobile Internet Connectivity: the coverage gap continues to narrow but the usage gap remains wide

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More than half the world’s population are now using mobile internet. That’s just over 4 billion people connected, and with 94 per cent of the world’s population covered by a mobile broadband network, lack of coverage is no longer the main challenge to digital inclusion. The ...

A new mechanism to catalyse distributed renewable energy

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Research shows that accessing finance is a critical barrier limiting mobile tower owners from adopting on-site renewable energy solutions. Typical fossil fuel powered solutions like diesel generators are relatively cheap to buy; the materials are readily available, and the ...

Building digital ecosystems: Partnering for market readiness and local contexts

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Digital solutions do not exist in vacuums. They require a system of end-users, service providers, regulators and, in the humanitarian context, both local and international humanitarian actors. A well-established ecosystem ensures provision of mobile and digital services in ...

Unlocking agri DFS: new business models addressing the financing gap

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Globally, nearly 500 million households depend on smallholder farming for their livelihoods. However, farmers are often financially excluded with limited access to financial products. Recognising this gap, the GSMA undertook research to investigate the rise of digital ...