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Conference on sustainable development through mobile applications planned in September

Staff Reporter

CHENNAI: The International Institute of Information Design (IIID), along with the Indian Institute of Technology-Bombay and the M.S. Swaminathan Research Foundation (MSSRF), would be organising a cross-disciplinary conference on sustainable development through mobile applications from September 15-17.

The conference ‘Mobile Plus' would address technology and information design challenges that need to be overcome in order to bring relevant content via mobile phone to people who would otherwise have no access to such information.

Addressing the press here on Monday, Veronika Egger, deputy director of IIID, said that the conference would try to encourage governments to drive development and change in education, healthcare and rural prosperity through the use of mobile applications.

While India has nearly 700 million mobile phone users, 80 per cent of whom are in rural areas, there are not enough technological solutions available to address issues of healthcare access and agriculture support infrastructure, Ms. Egger said.

MSSRF, which currently provides support for three mobile applications, provides livelihood-related information to three lakh people everyday.

Kirti Trivedi, professor at IIT-B, said that telecom companies can no longer ignore the voices of users. Mobile Plus will feature a number of virtual conferences in which people from various locations in India would offer suggestions on what sort of applications could transform their lives.

“This will be the first time when users will define how a technology will evolve,” Mr. Trivedi said.

Technology, design and development experts, content and infrastructure providers from over eight countries are expected to participate and discuss best-practice examples.

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