[WB] The Land Sector Has an App for That: The Evolution of Mobile Use in International Development

Paper prepared for presentation at the “2016 WORLD BANK CONFERENCE ON LAND AND POVERTY” The World Bank – Washington DC, March 14-18, 2016

This paper is a literature review of primary and secondary sources that seeks to chart the non-linear evolution of mobile use in development, from early efforts in the health sector to current land sector interventions. The objective of the paper is to identify three things: how mobile technologies and solutions have already been implemented by international development organizations in order to reduce duplication of efforts through information sharing; major obstacles to future interventions; and how innovations in the land sector, which include mobile broadband applications (“apps”) that record land information, assist in land registration, and share land management best practices, may lead to overcoming the obstacles. The obstacles, notably developing mobile solutions that take into account local contexts and scaling interventions, are intersectional in nature and therefore solutions are relevant more broadly to international development efforts beyond the land sector […]

View the full paper on the World Bank’s conference page or [DOWNLOAD HERE]

[GMP] 100 Words on Love: She’s Connecting the Dots For Me

I loved a girl who changed her address as often as her hair and a girl whose heart

stayed in St. Louis and when I couldn’t steal their hearts, I stole those other things. […]

Read all 100 words on The Good Men Project

[RR] Marriage Is Not A Competition

“Financially, men of all education levels benefit from marrying earlier,” Barkhorn writes in The Atlantic, her bold use of bold italics ensuring that I understand how dire the situation is for me as an old man. Women are benefiting from all those years of being single after coming of age and their benefits are being taken directly from the wallets of men! If men do not start pushing back the matrimonial clock toward an appropriate age (say 13?), we will certainly face the decline of our estates, perhaps even the loss of our God-given titles […]

Read the full piece on Role Reboot

[UA] Mongolian Poetry

Landing in Mongolia, Chinggis Khaan International Airport greets travelers with three entirely different alphabets. There is English using the Romanized alphabet, Mongolian using Russia’s Cyrillic alphabet, and Mongolian again, this time using the traditional script. After decades of suppression by first the Chinese, and then the Russians, Mongolia’s traditional script is making a comeback. The traditional script, originally developed by Chinngis (Genghis to the Western World) Khaan so that messengers could write it without having to get off their horses, slides vertically down the page instead of horizontally. It has the utilitarian grace of a hammer or perfectly balanced sword […]

Read the full post on the University of Arizona’s Wordplay Blog

[StS] My Metaphorical, Meandering Truth

At a young age I learned to interact with the world through the protection of sarcasm. I was brought up religious and so I believed every real question had already been answered (and answered correctly!) and when the real world ran counter to my expectations, I embraced verbal irony. If you’re in on the joke, a sarcastic comment says a lot; by capitalizing on the absurd space between expectations and reality, it subtly reveals the speaker’s wishes and hopes while never fully exposing them to direct sunlight. The problem is that not everyone is in on the joke (and that has been addressed wonderfully over here by Lindy West on Jezebel, with race as a focus in place of gender). I don’t think my jokes are funny, I think they’re tragic but tears in your eyes can blur the lines and my generation often sees life as a tragicomedy […]

Read the full post on So to Speak

[NPCA] Legends of Ger Life

Myths. Fascinating and fun to tell, they seek to make sense of the inexplicable. They can involve gods or mere mortal-but are more exciting when they contain both. Mongolian myths have casts ranging from wolves, to the Chinese, to Father Sky. Twenty years of Peace Corps Volunteers in Mongolia, it turns out, has created its own sub-culture, complete with its own legends […]

Read the full article in the NPCA’s Peace Corps Connect Magazine

[GMP] Beauty and the Brute

As the picture of the intricate machine running in front of me took shape, the tutu finally made sense. Odette, the Swan Queen, drew my attention as well as filled in the details that I had been missing. Each time she appears in front of Siegfried, she stops him from making a terrible mistake. For me, her appearance on stage clarified and corrected my misconceptions […]

Read the full feature on The Good Men Project

[RR] Hey Boy, Happy Birthday

If you can’t tell, I get a kick out of “Feminist Ryan Gosling.” I enjoy “Fuck Yeah! Ryan Gosling” too—in the same way that I like listening to Ke$ha. (Who doesn’t admire the efficiency of combining dental hygiene and Jack Daniels?) As entertaining as I might find a meme to be, though, I appreciate even more the information it gives. For an observer, they can demonstrate what a culture expects from interactions and the values that members hold dear […]

Read the entire piece on Role Reboot

Photo Credit: Elen Nivrae / Flickr