Category: ICTs in general

Power mapping

Cross posted from Groundviews. ### I was asked to contribute an article to an up-coming issue of The Architect, the journal of the Sri Lanka Institute of Architects. The issue will be anchored to the idea of ‘democratic space’. After the guest editor accepted my article without any reservations or edits, he was informed by the

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Speaking notes: The future of tech and peacekeeping, re:publica 2015

Invited by ZIF – Center for International Peace Operations and representing the ICT4Peace Foundation, I spoke today at re:publica15 in Berlin, Germany on the future of peacekeeping and technology. The session this morning had a very compelling title: NERDS WITH BLUE HELMETS? DIGITAL INNOVATION AND PEACEKEEPING. My submission was anchored to the following points: Following from the

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Big data can make South Asian cities more authoritarian

Nalaka Gunewardene has an interesting article on smart cities published on, in which he makes the case our cities today are just too unhealthy and that the advent of smart cities will “enhance feedback loops within the complex systems” and if processed properly, result in a “the steady flow of data” that  “can vastly

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Election monitoring in austere contexts using ICTs

The following note was penned to the co-ordinator of the Centre for Monitoring Election Violence (CMEV), who asked me to go into some detail around the information security, gathering, archival and dissemination strategies I conceptualised and deployed around the historic Presidential Eleection in Sri Lanka, held on 8th January 2015. CMEV’s information operations are a

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Tsunami: 10 years hence

Technology does not feel. It does not bleed. Its very insensitivity to trauma can be its strength – the tireless information sharing frameworks Info Share created knew no time of day and didn’t clamour for rest. On the other hand, because it is value neutral, technology lends itself to abuse. It cannot by itself create

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Lankacorps Fellows 2014 presentation

A presentation made at The Asia Foundation in Colombo to the 2014 cohort of the Foundation’s Lankacorps Fellows.

Between Scylla and Charybdis: Harnessing the potential of new media for conflict transformation

Photo by Jareeya Arttanuchit I was invited to present a keynote address at the International Conference on “Communication, Conflicts and Peace Processes: Landscape of Knowledge from Asia and the Deep South of Thailand”, from 21 – 22 August in Pattani, Thailand. As an aside, half an hour before I left for the airport, my Mac

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Remixing Pharrell’s ‘Happy’ in Sri Lanka

Intrigued by the production of several geo-remixed (a term borrowed from Ethan Zuckerman) videos in Sri Lanka of Pharrell’s ‘Happy’ song, I penned an article for Groundviews. I submit, Happiness is clearly present and growing apace within specific social, political, economic stratum and geographic loci. At the risk of caricature, those uncritical of governance, comfortable

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The future of technology in peacebuilding: Presentation at MIT Media Lab

In early April this year, I was invited to deliver a keynote address at the inaugural Build Peace conference, held at MIT Media Lab. My presentation was given, almost to the day, twenty years after the Rwandan genocide. Just before I went on stage, we all observed a minute’s silence to remember the victims. The

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USAID-UNDP Asia Regional Civil Society Experience Summit

The USAID-UNDP Asia Regional Civil Society Experience Summit was to be held in Bangkok, Thailand, between May 27 and 29, 2014 but cancelled at the last minute by the organisers on account of the recent political unrest in the country. As noted in the invitation I got to represent civil society from Sri Lanka at

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