Over three quarters of the world's poor live in rural areas. They often lack economic opportunities, have difficulty accessing basic services, have limited voice in governance and remain extremely vulnerable to shocks.
How can development practice and approaches address these issues within the current financial constraints facing national budgets and donor funding? What are the new, innovative - and more cost effective - solutions and applications available to respond to rural development challenges in Africa and other parts of the developing world in a meaningful manner?
The 7th Annual SANGONeT "ICTs for Civil Society" Conference, to be held from 1-3 November 2011 at the Wanderers Club in Illovo, Johannesburg, will focus on information communication technologies for rural development (ICT4RD) under the theme “Rural Realities, Real Solutions”.
ICT4RD 2011 posits that part of the answer to the questions listed above will rely on new technologies - technologies like mobile phones - with coverage already reaching further than roads, electricity, sanitation and clean water.
ICT4RD 2011 is the first African conference to apply these emerging technologies and practices to rural development, and will provide new thought leadership at a moment in time when the development sector is poised for innovation and change.
ICT4RD 2011 will bring together 250-300 experts and practitioners - from government, NGOs, donor community, ICT sector, social entrepreneurs, investors and other stakeholder groups - from across Sub-Saharan Africa and beyond, to confront the realities of rural development and explore the innovative use of ICTs to catalyze the growth of ICT4RD solutions for scale.
For more about ICT4RD 2011 and to register, refer to www.ngopulse.org/ict4rd.
SANGONeT Conference Team