Friday, 18 January 2008

Sustainability Panel - at GK3 (Global Knowledge Conference 3), Malaysia, 11, Dec 2007

Panel title: Sustainability First: Making Telecentres Work
Tuesday 11 December
14:00 to 15:30
EM3: Emerging Markets Workshop / Parallel Workshop 2
Room: FR406-407, Level 4

Session Summary
Telecentre sustainability has been a burning issue for over a decade. Recently, a number of franchise networks and others have emerged with new models that promise more sustainable solutions to public access to computers. What is it about these models that is different from past telecentres? Are these new approaches really a long term solution? Will they create a vibrant information ecosystems and market at the base of the pyramid? Or just prop up already struggling centres for a few more years. This panel will dig into the 'sustainability question' through a combination of research and case studies from the field.
Key questions

  • Why have telecentres struggled with sustainability in the past? (the 'no' paradigm)

  • What makes franchise networks and other new models different? (the 'yes' paradigm')

  • Are these new models (or any models) creating a resilient and sustainable market ecosystem?

Moderator & Panelists
Moderator: Mark Surman –
Panelist: A.M.M. Yahya, Director, Grameen Phone, Bangladesh (franchise)
Panelist: Harsha Liyanage, Director, Fusion, Sarvodaya (research)
Panelist: Karishma Kiri, Director, Unlimited Potential Group, Microsoft (corporate)
Panelist: Reshan Dewapura, COO, ICT Agency of Sri Lanka (government)
Panelist: Sulah Nduala, Executive Director, Ugabytes (NESST process)

Panelist: Miguel Raimilla, Director, OneRoof, Mexico & India

Session will use a lively 'talk show format'. The moderator will interview the seven panelists based on the three questions above. This will be interspersed with extensive audience interaction.
Opening and introductions (moderator)
Discussion: why have telecentres struggled with sustainability? (audience)
Response: the struggle with sustainability / the 'no' paradigm. (panelists)
What's changing? A quick look at the research. (Harsha)
Emerging new models / the 'yes' paradigm. (panelists)
Discussion: questions about the 'yes' paradigm? (audience)
Beyond models: creating a resilient ecosystem. (panelists)
Closing summary (moderator)
Innovation paragraph
We have seen significant innovation in telecentre business models in the past five years: new services; franchise networks; entreprenuer-led centres. This panel both explores these innovations and asks if these new approaches are enough. It also looks to the future to see what new trends are on the horizon.

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