Friday, 30 September 2011 10:59
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Pilot SMS Survey Reaches 36,000

  • Research estimates the cost of face to face surveys at $125/survey (this includes training, mobilising communities, transport and logistics). Mobile phone based eSurveys worked out at just under $5/survey.
  • Negatively, an eSurvey questionnaire does not stimulate community cooperation in the way face to face interviews can.
  • English is being adopted as the language of texting in several countries.

Quantitative Research Provides Compelling Evidence for Success of Participatory Development Programme in Uganda

  • Results of data analysis provide compelling evidence for the positive influence of PEP (higher stadards of living) among those engaging with the process and even those who have merely heard of PEP. Respondents involved in PEP are most likely to have improved latrines;
  • Those unaware of PEP are less likely to own a bednet,
  • Under 5 morbidity (across three indicators) appears to be lower in households represented by a respondent that was involved with PEP.
  • HIV Testing rates are highest among respondents who are involved in PEP.

How Can Projects Ensure the Poorest Are Reached?

  • In 8 country case studies ownership of a mobile phone and a household assets index correlated with per capita income. Therefore, these measures can be used as a proxy for complicated and problematic money/metric poverty indicators.
  • Furthermore, in 6 out of the 8 countries, the subjective observation of the enumerator regarding the precarious nature of the household situation also correlated with per capita income.
  • This suggests that trained enumerators can indeed assess poverty levels to a reasonable level of accuracy without access to complex and problematic data gathering tools and sources.

Targeting Mobile Applications for Rural Needs in Uganda

  • There is a strong demand for mobile based agricultural and health information among the rural community. HIV/AIDS information was given the highest priority and agricultural information was more important to poorer individuals.
  • Where there is a tangible cost benefit, it is likely that the poor will pay for a mobile based service, as the mobile market has demonstrated. However, the poor are particularly reluctant to pay for services offering potential or future benefit (e.g. introducing new crop varieties) as they tend to be risk averse.

What Makes the Mobile So Useful in a Development Context? Analysis of 10 Case Studies

  • Mobile phone and ICT based programmes carry·advantages·in terms of accessibility, speed, empowering women and complimenting other forms of technology.
  • These systems can be implemented for a·relatively modest cost·– typically around $50,000 in the cases studied.
  • The sustainability of these projects very much depends on the·ability to provide a return on investment. The case studies reveal four broad ways this can be achieved: Consumer pays; Company pays; Service provider pays; community pays.
  • Mobiles are particularly effective in reaching women, due largely to the fact that women can use mobiles at times and in locations that are convenient to them.

Mobiles 4 Development UNICEF Report

  • Between 2000 and 2008, the rate of growth in mobile penetration was fastest in Sub-Saharan Africa, where it rose from just over 1% to over 31%. However, the region's penetration rate remains the lowest in the world.
  • Investment in M4D is crucial. Access to mobiles will increase among the poorest, providing a low cost platform through which to deliver programming to isolated and vulnerable groups.
  • Localised ICT capacity needs to be strengthened. There still remains a lack of local capacity to lead on implementation of projects. Projects have continued to rely on US-based programmers with implications for cost and time.