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RIA Executive Director Alison Gillwald has received a Shuttleworth Foundation Flash Grant in support

“Shuttleworth Foundation have a funding model that rewards brilliance and new ideas by awarding full-time Fellowships. However, bubbling around the periphery of our model it has become clear that there are voices that are not heard... This is where the Shuttleworth Flash Grant comes in. We tasked our Fellows to seek out and nominate an impressive change agent and Alison’s name was one of those that percolated through,” said Jason Hudson, a Foundation director.


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The South African Draft Online Regulation Policy as a form of “censorship by proxy”.
The recently published Draft Online Regulation Policy (Draft Regulation) proposes far-reaching regulation of online content. The Draft Regulation is controversial not only in principle as it would restrict freedom of expression online, but also from a more practical perspective, with regards to implementation. The following blog-post discusses the potential impact of such regulation on users’ civil and political rights, particularly freedom of speech and expression, by extending its application beyond the remit of the FPB on protecting children’s rights for a safe media environment. Further, it explores unintended consequences of implementing such regulatory system.

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Postpaid Policy Brief Update
Vodacom released preliminary results for its financial year ending in March 2015, and CellC launched new products and started a buy back contract campaign in the same week as the RIA policy brief was launched. This required an immediate update.

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Are recent postpaid price increases by South African operators justifiable?
Vodacom, MTN and CellC justified recent increases in their postpaid product prices with claims of rising input costs. These price increases have taken the form of increases in monthly subscriptions, out of bundle rates, and the quantity of bundled minutes, SMSs and data. Some plans remain unchanged but most plans face direct or indirect price increases.

Download the complete policy brief: Research ICT Africa Postpaid Policy Brief Q1, 2015

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Press Statement Calling for the Withdrawal of the draft Online Content Regulation Policy

Civil Society and Industry Associations call on Film & Publications Board to Withdraw Draft Online Content Regulation Policy

A broad alliance of civil society and industry associations has issued a firm call for the Film and Publications Board (“the Board”) to withdraw its draft Online Content Regulation Policy, released for public comment on 4 March 2015. The call for the withdrawal is based on the unconstitutional, unlawful and unworkable nature of the draft, as well as the fact that it ignores several related Government processes.

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Young Scholar Awards 2015: Extension of deadline
The deadline for applications for the 2015 Young Scholars' Programme has been extended to 23 March 2015.

Kindly note that no further extensions will be granted.

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Riding the digital wave, the impact of cybercapacity on human development

The European Union Institute for Security Studies report on “Riding the digital wave, the impact of cybercapacity on human development” analyses cybersecurity as a way to empower individuals, communities and governments to achieve their developmental goals by reducing digital security risks stemming from access and use of Information and Communications Technologies.

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Research ICT Africa Among Top 20 Global Science and Technology Think Tanks
Research ICT Africa has been ranked among the top 20 global science and technology think tanks according to the 2014 Global Go To Think Tank Index (GGTTI). The GGTTTI has become the gold standard of excellence for think tanks around the world and is widely cited by donors, journals, think tanks and policymakers.

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Consumers benefit from lower mobile termination rates
Mobile termination rates no longer pose an obstacle to competition. Cell C and Telkom Mobile have continued to place pressure on MTN and Vodacom to reduce their prices, even at the new higher rate of 20c.

Download Research ICT Africa's policy brief no 1, 2015: Consumers benefit from lower mobile termination rates

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ICT4D, Regulation and Strategy

ICT4D Regulation and Strategy by Alison Gillwald in the Encyclopedia of Digital Communication and Society

Published Online: 11 February 2015

This entry provides an overview of telecom reform, starting with the first round which saw the privatization of fixed line incumbents, the liberalization of the mobile market, and the establishment of national regulatory authorities. It tracks what can be regarded as a second round of reform compelled by the public availability of the internet and the convergence of traditionally distinct broadcasting platforms requiring, ultimately, in the current phase of regulatory reform, the regulation of an integrated networks, services, and content value chain – or broadband. This is done from a global South point of view in terms of the common challenges faced in countries with low penetration rates, less mature, generally less competitive markets, facing institutional capacity challenges, limited network extension, and high build-out costs and with low national incomes.

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Household and Individual

Internet Governance

Debating Spectrum

Measuring Broadband Performance in Africa

Price Transparency Index

Research ICT Africa requires a full-time Principal Researcher/Senior Researcher/Researcher to join their research team in Cape Town on contract. The successful applicant will be responsible for the following key functions:

- Research and training under direction of the Executive Director;

- Preparation of presentations, reports and policy papers for dissemination;

- Lead and participate in teams established for the purpose of undertaking research and consulting projects;

- Preparation of proposals and tenders and writing up of research products.

For detailed job descriptions please click here, or contact for more information

Training and Events CALL FOR APPLICATIONS: CPRsouth 2015 Young Scholar Awards   THE CHANGING LANDSCAPE OF ICT GOVERNANCE AND PRACTICE – CONVERGENCE AND BIG DATA Innovation Center for Big Data and Digital Convergence: Yuan Ze University, Taiwan (26 – 28 August 2015)   2015 Young Scholars’ ...
CPRsouth 2015: Extension of deadline for abstracts - 05 January 2015 THE CHANGING LANDSCAPE OF ICT GOVERNANCE AND PRACTICE – CONVERGENCE AND BIG DATA (Hosted by the Innovation Center for Big Data and Digital Convergence, Yuan Ze University, Taiwan: 26 – 28 August 2015)    Abstracts/pa...
Making all voices count Fellowship Programme Making all voices count offers opportunities for people to work as Fellows with all travel and salary covered. Further information about the fellowship is available at the following link.
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Research ICT Africa's CPRafrica 2010 Conference photoset Research ICT Africa's CPRafrica 2010 Conference photoset