Nº 6 2013 > WSIS
Feedback from the winners of WSIS Project Prizes 2013
Success is more than just winning the WSIS Project Prizes contest. It also means continuing to work on the projects and achieve further benefits for society. Some of the winners of WSIS Project Prizes 2013 have updated us on their progress in recent months, and we are pleased to highlight a few of their comments here.
Since winning the prize, Italy’s Electronic Information for Libraries Public Library Innovation Programme has released a number of impact case studies for Africa and will launch a new call for proposals to support public library services that use technology to improve the livelihoods of people in their communities. An innovation award for creative use of ICT by public libraries was launched on 9 September 2013.
Rima Kupryte, Director of Italy’s Electronic Information for Libraries scheme says “Receiving the 2013 WSIS Project Prize was a tremendous honour and an important recognition that public libraries are powerful partners in development. Winning such an esteemed prize gave us extra validation that our innovative approach connecting libraries with technology is working.”
Cultural diversity and identity, linguistic diversity and local content
“The contest and the prize showed our stakeholders the relevance of our project, allowing us to expand it and increase our budget,” says Santiago Amador, Director of ICT Adoption and Access, at Colombia’s Ministry of Information Technologies and Communications, which won a prize in the category of cultural diversity and identity, linguistic diversity and local content with its project “En mi idioma” (In my language), in cooperation with Colnodo (an association of non-profit non-governmental organizations).
The name of the project has since changed from “En mi idioma” to "Origen" because the objective now is to preserve not just language but the entire cultural heritage, using ICT and digital content.
Work on automating the delivery of different types of permits has continued since the prize award for the E‑licence Information System project of Kazakhstan’s Ministry of Transport and Communications, National Information Technologies (NITEC), and Ministry of Regional Development. This work is scheduled to be completed in 2014. Besides e‑licences, customers will be able to obtain all types of permits through the e‑licence portal. Special regulations are being passed to legitimize the issue of each type of permit.
Winning the prize “served as a great incentive and became the pride of the entire project team, including both public authorities and the business community. It gave this national project high visibility in the international arena. Experts from several countries have already visited Kazakhstan to learn from our experience” says Ruslan Ensebayev, Chairman of NITEC’s Board.
Building confidence and security in the use of ICT
The prize in building confidence and security in the use of ICT went to the Digital Training through Mobile Classrooms project from Ecuador's Ministry of Telecommunications and Information Society.
Patricio Carvajal, Digital Literacy Director of Ecuador's Ministry of Telecommunications and Information Society, says that for him "Winning the prize means that even small nations can set an example to the world on how to design and execute successful ICT projects that make new technologies accessible to poor people, in line with the Millennium Development Goals. Our team has been warmly congratulated in our country, and other countries have asked us for advice. We are very happy to share our expertise and collaborate with those countries to help them replicate our model."
International and regional cooperation
The Child Helplines and Telecoms project from Child Helpline International (the Netherlands) won a prize in the category of international and regional cooperation. Thomas Müller, Deputy Head of Programmes, Child Helpline International, says that winning the contest "gives official recognition to your work and confirms that you are doing the right thing. In the case of Child Helpline International, the WSIS prize gave us great motivation to keep engaging with ITU and its members around the world in order to empower children and young people, and to give them a voice through communication technologies."
Role of public governance authorities and all stakeholders in the promotion of ICT for development
The Safeer project from Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Higher Education won a prize in the category of role of public governance authorities and all stakeholders in the promotion of ICT for development. According to Khaled H. AlAjmi from Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Higher Education, winning the WSIS prize has acted as “an incentive for the Safeer team to further transform the way e‑government programmes work so that they offer a more accessible, available, secure and seamless service to citizens.”
WSIS PROJECT PRIZES | 2014
Could your project win a 2014 WSIS prize?
Hurry! The closing date for the WSIS Project Prizes 2014 competition is 1 November 2013.
All stakeholders are invited to submit their applications via www.wsis.org/prizes.
The WSIS Project Prizes 2014 contest, launched on 5 September 2013, provides a platform to identify and showcase success stories and models that could be easily replicated, to empower communities at the local level. The prizes recognize efforts to add value to society and move closer towards achieving WSIS goals.
Information about all the winners of WSIS Project Prizes 2013 is available from ITU News (https://itunews.itu.int/En/3942-Prize-winning-projects.note.aspx).