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Enabling Mobile Transformation in Africa

Next Generation Mobile Services for Government, Health and the Financial Sector
Begins:   Nov 18, 2008 09:00
Ends:   Nov 18, 2008 12:00

e-Development  Logo infoDev   GDLN    eStrategies logo


e-Development Thematic Group/Global ICT Dept, Africa GDLN, British Publishers and other partners present a Global Dialogue Workshop on


Enabling Mobile Transformation in Africa:

Next-Generation Mobile Services for Government, Health and the Financial Sector


  Organized in partnership with eStrategies Africa Conference which will be bringing Minister-level audience in Cape Town from 20 countries


November 18, 2008

9:00 am - 12:00 pm ET

World Bank, Washington, D.C.

1818 H Street Room MC-C2-137





You can watch the recorded webcast at:

Program Agenda




          Jane Treadwell, formerly CIO, Victorian Government, and Deputy CEO, CentreLink, Australia   (from DC)


Opening Remarks


  Philippe Dongier, Sector Manager, Global ICT Department


Global Perspectives and Lessons from International Experience




          Emmanuel Lallana, formerly ICT Commissioner, Philippines - global overview/mobile government

          Mitul Shah, Senior Director, UN Foundation - mobile health

          Andi Dervishi, Mobile Applications Practice Leader, International Finance Corporation - mobile banking and health (TBC)

          Stephen Mwaura, Central Bank of Kenya - m-Pesa: a success story in African mobile banking


Country Perspectives from Africa


Senior officials from Ghana, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania, and Ethiopia


Workshop Facilitator: Oleg Petrov, Program Coordinator, e-Development Thematic Group (


Webcast Facilitator: Mikhail Bunchuk (


Program Description


As part our ongoing series of workshops discussing the role of Mobile for Development (M4D), we are offering yet another exciting event, this time focused on Africa.


Mobile services are quickly emerging as the new frontier in transforming government, health, banking and many other sectors due to fast growing penetration of mobile phones even in the poorest and most remote areas of the globe. In theory, many services can be now made available on a 24x7x365 basis at any place in the world covered by mobile networks, which today means almost everywhere. This emerging trend in improving service delivery and organizational efficiency and effectiveness can be called mobile-enabled development (m-development) or mobile transformation.


Transforming service delivery with mobile technologies is of great interest to many African countries and there are early success stories like m-Pesa in Kenya and Wizzit in South Africa. A number of Ministers and regulators from Africa will be joining us among other stakeholders in Cape Town and a number of other sites all over Africa.


According to the ITU, since the turn of the century, the growth of mobile cellular subscribers has been impressive, with year-on-year growth averaging 24 per cent between 2000 and 2008. While in 2000, mobile penetration stood at only 12 per cent, it surpassed the 50 per cent mark by early 2008. It is estimated to reach about 61 per cent by the end of 2008 or 4 billion subscribers worldwide. In Africa the number of mobile subscribers has also increased dramatically over the last few years. In 2007 alone, the African continent added over 60 million new mobile subscribers and mobile penetration in the region is now close to 30 percent.


This is the largest distribution and service delivery platform available for development community at present. The question is, how do we take full advantage of it? How can the mobile phone transform the development agenda in Africa?


Some other questions to be addressed are:

          What are the most successful examples of mobile applications?  Is there evidence of transformational development impact?

          What is the role of governments in terms of enabling this agenda?

          What is the role of the private sector?

          What is the role of the development institutions?


Do you have thoughts to share on this?   



Target Audience


The audiences in participating African sites will include:


1. Government officials responsible for e-government / ICT development agenda in the country as well as those representing a regulatory authority supervising mobile operators.

2. Development institutions, NGOs working in the area of SME and entrepreneurship support, health sector, financial sector development, development of rural areas; other donor/development institutions represented in the country interested in the topic of donor projects' effectiveness.

3. Mobile operators

4. Developers of content, applications and services for mobile devices


Expected outcomes


Key stakeholders will be sensitized to the potential of mobile technologies for raising the reach and convenience of public and private services, internal effectiveness and efficiency of government, financial and health sectors and development projects. The stakeholders will be empowered with the best practices and lessons learned in innovative use of mobile technologies for social and economic development and ready to apply the knowledge gained. South-South knowledge exchange on the use of mobile technologies for development will be reinforced.


Workshop Agenda


Speaker Profiles


Relevant links:


InfoDev's m-banking: A Knowledge Map

InfoDev's Micropayment Systems and their Applications to Mobile Networks

Excerpt from book by Tomi Ahonen on Mobile as 7th of the Mass Media

See many other interesting links and previous related events at our special coverage on Mobile Transformation: 

The following entities contributed to this event



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