Stakeholders Workshop

Around the table with people from the business, development, academic and media sectors.

On the 9th & 10th of December 2010, a program workshop was organised in Leiden, The Netherlands, entitled ‘Mobile phones: the new talking drums of everyday Africa?’. The workshop hosted people from various sectors, including academia, development organisations, the media and mobile phone companies.

The aim of the workshop was to bring together academics and policy makers so as to engage in a discussion concerning the political economy of the mobile phone and social dynamics that make the mobile phone accessible and inaccessible, limited and unlimited in the sociality and politics of everyday Africa. Policy can only begin to be relevant when it addresses issues of inequality and access in relation to new Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs).

This page will act as a form of published material on which the presentations will be posted, video’s and sound fragements of the sessions uploaded, and analytical reports spread.

Workshop Program & Participants

Preliminary Workshop Report 


Below you will find links to the various presentations held during the two-day workshop. Please bare with us as they come online one by one.

We would like to thank all participants for their contributions and to express our appreciation for their participation in the workshop. We regard the interaction as a process and sincerely hope that we will continue our exchange on these and similar issues.

Thursday 9th December

Introduction and welcome, Mirjam de Bruijn & Inge Brinkman (ASC)

Opening of the workshop by the ASC Director Ton Dietz

Mobile phones, ICTs and everyday African democracy: transmissions and transgressions’, Keynote speaker Herman Wasserman

State and media

Mobile phones in the hands of citizens more than just a tool?: Marjan Besuijen (HIVOS)

♣ Ghetto Radio: Maarten Brouwer (Ghetto Radio)

Democracy and governance technologies in Casamance, Senegal: Fatima Diallo (University of Leiden/ASC)

ICT and local politics

Mobile campaigning: Kersti Wissenbach (Butterfly Works)

♣ Mobieltje onmisbaar in verslaggeving: Bertil van Vugt (Africa Interactive)

Mobile reporting as a child abuse detection tool: Olivier Nyirubugara (Voices of Africa Media Foundation)

Technology and development/knowledge and society

Uganda: outsourcing contracts, development of technology in the countries: Bart van der Linden (Giarte)

NICE – A growing business of ICT services for development in The Gambia: Lonneke Craemers (NICE)

The Cheetah Generation and the rise of the local African entrepreneur: Ben White (HIVOS)

Dialogues between Development and Communication

Rethinking Communication Research and Development in Africa: Francis Nyamnjoh (University of Cape Town)

Beyond markets for mobiles: the development sector and pro-poor impacts of ICTs: Ben Garside (IIED) Paper.

Calling in/from Africa

♣ “Hello! The house is following the conversation:” The use of ICTs for social networking amongst the Pinyin and Mankon in Cape Town and Holland: Henrietta Nyamnjoh (University of Leiden/ASC)

The ICT in the service of Transnational Migration: The Cell phone and the Nigerian Immigrants in Anglophone Cameroon: Tangie Fonchingong (Counterpart institute Cameroon: University Buea)

Phones, mobility, borders and limits: Inge Brinkman & Mirjam de Bruijn (ASC). Paper.


Friday 10th December, Morning Program (closed session)

Introduction and welcome

ICT and entrepreneurship, daily life

ICT integration as a process of social innovation: how to ensure that ICT leads to development goals: Francois Laureys (IICD)

Business and ICT development

Mobile telephony: public-private partnerships in emerging markets, Hajo van Beijma (Text to Change)

African mobile telecoms: Are the glory days and gold rush over?, Martin de Koning (UPC)

ICT and political activism

Freedom Fone Zimbabwe, Brenda Burrell (Freedom Fone)

♣ Cross-media and human rights, Simeon Oriku (The Kuyu Project)

Friday 10th December, Afternoon Program (open session)

Introduction and welcome: Calling for equality? Communication technologies and social hierarchies, Mirjam de Bruijn & Inge Brinkman (ASC)

Connecting Dreams: Success/failure, crossing borders and new ICT (film), Sjoerd Sijsma (Eyeses)

                      Trailer movie ‘Connecting Dreams’

Summary and critical reflections, Francis Nyamnjoh (University of Cape Town)

Plenary Debate, Herman Wasserman, Ben Garside, Martin de Koning, Brenda Burrell, Hajo van Beijma, Mieke Hartveld

Sound & footage

Connect Worlds of Knowledge: A Word of Welcome by Ton Dietz, director of the ASC.

Why this Workshop? By Mirjam de Bruijn, head of the themegroup.

Herman Wasserman, Rhodes University.

More footage will follow as soon as possible.

For further reading

Information Economy Report 2010- ICTs, Enterprises and Poverty Alleviation, United Nations, New York/Geneva 2010.

Making Civil Voices Heard: Media, Information and Communication for Development Programme 2005-2008 (HIVOS)

 Jasper Grosskurth (2010) Futures of Technology in Africa, STT, The Hague.


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