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ICT4D@Penn Seminar Series: ICTs and Literacy for the Very Poor: A decade of work

October 6, 2011
04:00PM - 05:30PM

Annenberg School for Communication, Room 500
3620 Walnut Street
Philadelphia, 19104

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Categories: Seminar

We are delighted to announce the launch of Penn’s first Seminar Series on Information and Communication Technologies for Development (ICT4D)*

Presenter: Dan Wagner, UNESCO Chair in Learning and Literacy, Professor and Director, International Education and Development Program, and Director, International Literacy Institute, GSE

Title of talk: “ICT and Literacy for the Very Poor: A decade of work”


In many developing countries, over the past decade, the atmospherics concerning information and communications technologies (ICTs) has undergone a dramatic change: from (1) “are you crazy?” to (2) “well, let’s see what pieces might work for us,” to (3) “ICTs are the answer.” Even for the poorest countries, the benefits of ICT are now (in 2011) seen as relatively well-suited for coping with the problems of literacy and basic education (and other sectors), and for enhancing the socio-economic consequences for the lives of the users. The reasons for this are varied, and still debated, along with the types of solutions proposed to date. Various examples will be discussed, including the author’s work over the past decade in India and South Africa.

Introduction of the Seminar Series by Joseph Sun, Vice Dean, SEAS


The Information Communication Technology for Development (ICT4D) Seminar Series is a new interdisciplinary venture at Penn to bring together researchers, students, and leaders from all sectors who are interested in better understanding the role that ICTs play in international development, and the impact that they have on impoverished and under-resourced communities. The Series will bring together noted researchers, practitioners, and policy makers in the ICT4D field, and will provide a venue for the Penn community to explore this important area of work.

Please RSVP to Laura Schwartz-Henderson (lsh@asc.upenn.edu) by Wednesday, September 27.

For more information about the series, please visit the ICT4D website

ICT4D Seminar Series Faculty Core Group: Emily Hannum (Assoc Professor Sociology & Education, GR Chair Sociology),  John Jemmott (Kenneth B. Clark Professor, ASC), Monroe E. Price (Director, Center for Global Communication Studies, ASC), Carrie Kovarik (Asst Professor Dermatology, Dermatopathology, and Infectious Diseases, SOM), Joseph Sun (Vice Dean, SEAS), Dan Wagner (UNESCO Chair & Professor GSE)

PhD Student Coordinators: Deepti Chittamuru (ASC, lead contact), Katie Murphy (GSE), David Conrad (ASC)

* The ICT4D Seminar is supported by the Provost’s Interdisciplinary Initiatives Fund, the Annenberg School for Communication, the Graduate School of Education/International Educational Development Program, and the School of Engineering and Applied Science. Programmatic support is provided by Annenberg’s Center for Global Communication Studies.