A 3-day Winter School organized by the Centre for IT and Public Policy (CITAPP) at IIIT-Bangalore

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Towards an Inclusive Digital Society: Shaping the Agenda for Technology Design

10th -12th December 2018

 

Concept

Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) are considered essential for achieving the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals adopted by the United Nations. It has been found, however, that initiatives which rely on ICTs as a blanket solution with deterministic motivations without counting in social, political and cultural factors often fail to meet their stated development objectives. There is increasing evidence to suggest that meaningful access to ICTs and capabilities required for their effective use are ensconced in myriad interactions between individuals’ skills, social positions and their larger network of social relations. Hence, when we think of an inclusive [digital] society, we need to focus on these issues as important factors shaping people’s engagement with ICTs. These factors could help create a social envelop around ICTs that sensibly imbue social concerns into technology design leading to better participation and inclusion of under-served and marginal social groups. Some of the following questions become pertinent in order for inclusion to serve as a key design principle of our ICTs:

  • What could be the constituents of a relevant social envelop and how could it be constructed?
  • Can inclusion be understood only ex-post during the technology use stage or, could it become an ex-ante construct to inform better designs?

 

Theme for 2018

This year’s Winter School ‘Towards an Inclusive Digital Society: Shaping the Agenda for Technology Design’ presents a brief conceptual and practical toolkit for combining the technical and social support required for achieving greater inclusion in the design of ICTs. Towards this end, we will look at three axes through which exclusion usually takes place, namely, class, disability and gender. The aim of the Winter School is to highlight the ways in which technologies can become exclusive, how it could impact different segments of the society and how we can think of alternative design principles that will make our ICTs more inclusive.

 

Programme Structure
The programme consists of lectures, interactive discussions, film screenings and group activities.

Day 1:

Keynote: Need for an inclusive digital society: A design-thinking approach
Introduction: Complex systems, simple designs? Towards better digital inclusion
Module I: Session I: Class bias in technology design and its implications
Group Activity

Day 2:

Module I: Session II: How to leverage digital technologies for low income contexts
Module II: Session I: Gender bias in technology design and its implications
Module II: Session II: How to bring gender-sensitivity in digital technology designs
Group Activity

Day 3:

Module III: Session I: Principles of accessibility in digital technology design
Module III: Session II: Challenges of building assistive technologies
Group Activity

At the end of the three day programme, participants will present a poster on a specific aspect of the inclusive design discussed during the Winter School. The sessions will be conducted during 9 am and 5 pm every day. Detailed schedule of the programme will be available by 3rd week of November 2018.

 

Applications
Anybody with a Bachelor’s degree in any discipline may apply. Students who are in the final year of their Bachelor’s degree may also apply. Working professionals employed in the government, corporate and not-for-profit sectors are also encouraged to apply. There is no application fee. Selected candidates will have to register for attending the Winter School. Registration Fee for students and working professionals are Rs. 1000/ and Rs. 3000/- respectively. Registration fee will include a programme kit, lunch and refreshment for three days of the winter school. Outstation participants may be provided limited and partial travel allowance and accommodation at IIITB’s hostel depending on availability. To apply, please fill in the Application Form. Applications must be submitted by 10th November 2018. Accepted candidates will be notified by 16th November 2018.

For further queries mail to: winterschool2018@iiitb.ac.in

Call for Application

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CITAPP invites applications for RESEARCH ASSOCIATE positions for its project titled “National Digital IDs, efficiency and/or inclusion: a democratic dilemma”

About the Project

Legal identification for all is listed as a Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), as it will help hitherto excluded populations to be included in mainstay of state and economy (United Nations). Even before the announcement of SDGs in 2015, many developing countries have taken to large scale ID projects for public service delivery as part of their development policy (Gelb and Clarke 2013). However, not all of these efforts of legal identification are considered to be adequate and appropriate for achieving the inclusive development as defined by SDGs. We concur with the above assumption that identity issues are complex for two reasons; a) the problem statement around digital ID systems are far from being defined and agreed upon by different actors/communities and b) there is a gap between the fragmented cultural and political system of multiple identities and the rational-legal system of unitary identities. With this understanding of the complexity, we set out to conduct a long-term, multi-sited study of Aadhaar, which is often hailed as a success story of digital ID systems. The objective of our study is to unravel to what extent Aadhaar’s claim of inclusiveness fares well on the ground and what are its overall implications for Indian democracy.

About the Position

This is a full time research position which requires desk research, extensive fieldwork across India and also academic writing. The applicant should be familiar with both quantitative and qualitative research methods with expertise in at least one. The applicant should be committed to inter-disciplinary research, and should have expertise that includes, but is not limited to, information economics, political-economy of the information communication technology, ICTs for development, including e-governance and other policy domains. Besides assisting on research projects, research associates are also encouraged to assist faculty in teaching and student supervision.

Applicants with a consistently excellent academic record, who have either a Master’s degree in social sciences (or, an equivalent degree in science/technology), or, will do so shortly, are welcome to apply. IIIT-B provides an attractive intellectual environment and a compensation package to match the best academic institutions in the country. The initial contract will be for one year with possibility of extension on mutually agreed terms.

How to Apply

Interested candidates may please apply with their latest CV and a Statement of Purpose to citapp@iiitb.ac.in . Open Call .

E-Health Research Center (EHRC) has received a seed grant

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January 2018

The E-Health Research Center (EHRC) has received a seed grant from the Department of Health and Family Welfare, Government of Karnataka in early January 2018, for a proposal submitted by the EHRC core team (Profs. T. K. Srikanth, Amit Prakash, and Jaya Sreevalsan Nair), including inputs from Prof. Madhav Rao.

Winter School 2017 on ‘Digital and the Everyday: from codes to cloud’

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A 3-day Winter School is being organized by CITAPP at IIIT Bangalore during 11th-13th December 2017. This year’s theme is Digital and the Everyday: from codes to cloud. Applications need to be submitted by 12th November 2017.

Read the detailed call for applications here: http://citapp.iiitb.ac.in/news-and-events/conferences-workshops/winterschool2017/

The schedule for the Winter School 2017 is out! Check your schedule here.

Note: The selection process for CITAPP Winter School 2017 is now over. Selected candidates have been notified by email. In case you have applied for the Winter School and have not heard from us, please ensure you have also checked your spam folder. This year, we received a large number of applications and hence, have sent email notification only to the selected candidates.

Admission announcement for PhD and MS (by Research) programmes at IIIT Bangalore: IT & Society Domain

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IIIT-B invites applications for its research degree programs, namely, Doctor of Philosophy and Master of Science by Research/ Master of Science (Research) programs. This call for admissions is for academic year 2017-18 (Term 2) starting in January 2018. The online application portal will be open from 23rd October to 11th November 2017.

Research areas for the IT & Society research domain:

  • Digital Infrastructures (particularly access, exclusion, use, disuse, breakdown, failures, authentication/non-authentication, repair, and maintenance of public infrastructures of WiFi and biometrics systems such as Aadhaar)
  • Geographic Information Systems and their use in delivery of digital services
  • Gender and ICTs
  • ICTs and Development (particularly Open Development)
  • ICTs in Governance (particularly e-Governance, Biometrics and Digital Identities in Governance, Governance Analytics and Toolkits)
  • ICTs in Health (particularly around designing assistive technologies for persons with disabilities)
  • ICT Industry (particularly on Automation and its effect on ICT labour force; and how changes in the information technology industry influence the professional trajectories of the information technology professional)
  • ICT Policies (in telecommunications, data protection and security, data privacy, cross-border data flow)
  • Social and Digital Media (studying their use and evaluating their impact)

Minimum Eligibility Criteria:

  • Candidates with a Masters degree in any of the social sciences are eligible to apply for Master of Science by Research/ Master of Science (Research) and Doctor of Philosophy in the ITS domain.
  • In addition, candidates with a four-year Bachelors degree in engineering (B.E., B.Tech. or equivalent) can apply for the Master of Science by Research/ Master of Science (Research) program; and those with a Masters degree in engineering (M.E., M.Tech. or equivalent) can apply for the Doctor of Philosophy program.
  • Candidates are encouraged to provide a valid score in GATE, JRF, NET, GRE, or GMAT along with their applications. Those without such a score may apply as well.
  • For some of the topics, work experience in the information technology industry is desirable but not essential.
  • Shortlisted candidates will have to take a written examination at IIITB when called for interview.

More details at:

https://www.iiitb.ac.in/admission_research.php?pid=ms-phd

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