Education Policy | Post Primary | Preschool | Primary | Tertiary | Search

 

Bridging the Information Divide


Bridging the Information Divide

Computer science researchers from Waikato University are helping UNESCO bridge the information gap between developing countries and the rest of the world.

Professor Ian Witten, Dr David Bainbridge and Mr Michael Dewsnip from the New Zealand Digital Library (NZDL) research group have been asked to teach at a UNESCO-sponsored workshop on the Greenstone Software in Fiji.

Developed by the NZDL group, the Greenstone Software is widely used by UNESCO and other world aid organisations to distribute humanitarian information in developing countries.

Greenstone enables UNESCO to compile virtual libraries on user-friendly CD-Roms that are distributed widely in developing countries, in areas that lack information resources and have slow and unstable communication networks

Each CD contains resources on topics like fair-trade marketing, medical information, agriculture, environmental conservation and culture.

Prof. Witten says the CD-Roms are part of the ‘Information for All’ project, which aims to close the information gap between developing countries and the rest of the world.

“The Fiji workshop is one of many that UNESCO run throughout the world each year, to train representatives from developing countries how to use the Greenstone software,” says Prof. Witten.

“Those who attend the workshop then go back to their own country and train others how to use Greenstone to access information in existing libraries and eventually create their own.”

UNESCO has been liasing with the NZDL and using Greenstone for over 4 years. It was one of the first organisations to adopt the unique software.

The Fiji workshop runs for three days, with representatives attending from developing countries across the Asia Pacific region.

Freely available under the GNU Public Licence (GPL), Greenstone is used globally by a range of organisations, from humanitarian aid and disaster relief agencies to the BBC, who use the software internally for a 1 million item radio and TV catalogue.

Earlier this year Professor Witten was named as the seventh recipient of the Namur Award, a prestigious international humanitarian honour that recognises recipients for raising awareness of the social implications of information and communication technologies

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 
Legendary Bassist David Friesen Plays Wellington’s Newest Jazz Venue

Friesen is touring New Zealand to promote his latest album Another Time, Another Place, recorded live at Auckland's Creative Jazz Club in 2015. More>>

Howard Davis Review: The Father - Descending Into The Depths of Dementia

Florian Zeller's dazzling drama The Father explores the effects of a deeply unsettling illness that affects 62,000 Kiwis, a number expected to grow to 102,000 by 2030. More>>


Howard Davis Review: Blade Runner Redivivus

When Ridley Scott's innovative, neo-noir, sci-fi flick Blade Runner was originally released in 1982, at a cost of over $45 million, it was a commercial bomb. More>>

14-21 October: New Zealand Improv Festival In Wellington

Imagined curses, Shibuya’s traffic, the apocalypse, and motherhood have little in common, but all these and more serve as inspiration for the eclectic improvised offerings coming to BATS Theatre this October for the annual New Zealand Improv Festival. More>>

ALSO:

Bird Of The Year Off To A Flying Start

The competition asks New Zealanders to vote for their favourite bird in the hopes of raising awareness of the threats they face. More>>

Scoop Review Of Books:
Jenny Abrahamson's John & Charles Enys: Castle Hill Runholders, 1864-1891

This volume will be of interest to a range of readers interested in the South Island high country, New Zealand’s natural environment, and the history of science. More>>

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • CULTURE
  • HEALTH
  • EDUCATION