Information and communication technologies have long promised to provide quality education, improve health care, allow open government, and solve environmental issues. To realize this potential and influence policy-making and program design, the Singapore Internet Research Centre, supported by IDRC, created an innovative research capacity-building program, SIRCA. The program supports interdisciplinary ICTD research through the nurturing of research relationships. By bringing together experienced mentors with deserving early-career Asian researchers in an intellectually stimulating environment, SIRCA has fostered a cohort of talent capable of generating the rigorous scientific evidence needed. Their stories, and reflections about the program, are told in this book. If ever it needed demonstrating that ICTs are an indispensable tool for developing an information society rather than a reward for achieving it, then the SIRCA program has achieved that.
Arul Chib is Assistant professor at Nanyang Technological University, and assistant director of the Singapore Internet Research Centre. His research program has extended to the use of mobile technology by remote healthcare workers in the rural regions of China, India, Nepal, Thailand, and Uganda. Chib has published in numerous international refereed publications. He is the winner of the 2011 Prosper.Net Scopus Young Scientist Award in ICTS for Sustainable Development, awarded by Elsevier and the United Nations University.
Roger W. Harris is founder of Roger Harris Associates, a consulting and social entrepreneurial firm whose mission is to alleviate poverty by facilitating access to ICTs for underserved sections of society in Asia, and to ensure they are able to make good use of the technology according to their own development aspirations. For the past eight years, the firm has been providing consulting and knowledge-sharing services in the area of ICTs for poverty reduction and rural development in Asia.