Session on the Constitution and the Nuances of Law and Policy-Making at Rangasthala, Bangalore

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The Centre for Information Technology and Public Policy (CITAPP), IIIT Bangalore along with Archives at National Center for Biological Sciences (NCBS), Bangalore and Champaca Bookstore, Bangalore organized an interactive session on the Constitution and the nuances of law and policy-making at Rangasthala, MG Road. Advocate Malavika Prasad and author and lawyer Gautam Bhatia conducted the session to familiarise general audience about the basics of Constitution. The speakers started off by introducing the audience to a few fundamental constitutional concepts – article, structure of the state, constitutionalism and the rule of law to name a few. They also shed some light on the history of the Indian Constitution and on the role that legislatures, states and governments play in upholding the law. The event generated very active participation from a large number of audience gathered from all over the city. The vibrant conversations created by the event were in sync with the spirit of the public space that the venue offered.

The speakers left us with a note on how we, as citizens, could play a role in reaffirming the Constitution.


Mission Admission 2019

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IIITB participated in a Times of India event, Mission Admission 2019, , with the goal of attracting potential applicants in Bangalore for the MSc Digital Society program. It was a two day event (25th and 26th May) that brought together thought leaders and eminent educationalists to unfold their first hand experience in the most unadulterated fashion.

About the event: The Times of India organises Mission Admission 2019, the biggest higher education expo in Bengaluru, to assist students stepping into graduation courses. Mission Admission is a platform that enables students and parents to get a holistic understanding of courses available after Class 12 or PU. Eminent educationists, industry stalwarts and other experts are present to guide students. The best colleges and universities in Karnataka provide students and parents information about admission, courses, fees, campus and infrastructure.

Open Sessions, Posters and Doctoral Consortium at ICTDX, IIM Ahmedabad

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Research Students and Faculty members of Centre for Information Technology and Public Policy (CITAPP) participated in the tenth addition of ICTD held at IIM Ahmedabad during January 2019. The international conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development (ICTD) is organized every 12-18 months, and brings together researchers and practitioners working across domains, sectors, and disciplines to study the role of ICT in social, political, and economic development ( ).

Following is a list of open sessions organized and posters and doctoral consortium:

Open Sessions

Beyond IVR: Voice-User Interfaces for Emerging Smartphone Users

With the steady growth of smartphone users and increasing number of mobile Internet users, new types of voice user interfaces—such as voice-based search and voice assistants—are becoming an integral part for smartphone users’ everyday lives. Following the long-term interest of the ICTD community in user interfaces for users in developing contexts, we aim to host an unconference to bring together like-minded individuals to develop a research agenda for these interfaces among underserved communities.

Apoorva Bhalla
Bidisha Chaudhuri
Linus Kendall (Sheffield Hallam University and IIIT Bangalore)


Do Digital Identity Systems Have a Theory of Inclusion?

Designing a national scale unitary digital ID system in democratic regimes can be better understood as a wicked problem which are well served by adopting systems-thinking approaches that explicitly engage with the inherent complexity rather than rationalizing them away. In this session, we engage with diverse perspectives on complexity drawn from the disciplines of computer science, law, and public policy to engage with questions concerning inclusion in digital ID designs and infrastructure.

Bidisha Chaudhuri


Open Government Data and Accountability: Hype, Reality or a Possibility?

Open Government Data (OGD) refers to making government data publicly available through online portals to enhance transparency of the State towards citizens. Many national and regional governments are adopting OGD world over. Yet, we don’t fully understand how the availability of such datasets influences the existing mechanisms of citizen-State engagement. Does it make the citizens negotiate more effectively with the State? Does it make the State more accountable to citizens? Or does it only “empower the empowered” while leaving out the more disempowered? In this session, we seek to understand the practitioners’ perspective on the impact of OGD.

Rajesh Hanbal
Sham Kashyap (Azim Premji University)


Gender Equality in the Indian IT Workplace

We want this panel discussion to start a dialogue amongst practitioners and policy makers about the experiences of being a woman in the Indian IT workplace. We are hoping this will bring out the hidden nuances of these experiences and give these women a suitable platform to share and even discuss them.

Oindrila Matilal
Mounika Neerukonda



A Rights-based approach to Open Government Data
Rajesh Hanbal and Amit Prakash

The Datafication of Anti-Poverty Programmes: Evidence from the Public Distribution System in Karnataka
Soumyo Das and Silvia Masiero (Loughborough University)


Doctoral Consortium

A Multi-Objective Optimization Framework for Task Automation
Arvind Upreti

“Seeing the State” through Open Government Data (OGD)
Rajesh Hanbal

Gender and Development in the Digital Social Enterprise
Oindrila Matilal

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

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Programme Schedule for the Winter School is out now

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

10th – 12th December 2018



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.


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:

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 . Open Call .

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