[Urbanstudy] Talk by Shubhranshu Choudhary, IIIT Bangalore

Balaji Parthasarathy pbalaji at iiitb.ac.in
Mon Aug 28 08:50:03 CDT 2017


The Center for Information Technology and Public Policy (CITAPP)

International Institute of Information Technology Bangalore (IIITB)

invites you to a talk titled

CGNet Swara: A voice-enabled mobile phone platform for tribal areas

by

Shubhranshu  Choudhary
CGNet Swara

2:00 PM on 29 August, 2017 (Tuesday)
Venue: Room 310, IIITB campus
26/C, Electronic City, Hosur Road, Bangalore 560100

About the talk: Many of the estimated 80 million members of India's tribal communities lack access to any mainstream media outlets. This often poses serious barriers to their socio-economic development, as their grievances about government neglect and economic exploitation remain unvoiced. In addition, certain factions (such as the Maoist insurgency) can exploit their frustration and isolation to violent ends.

To address this problem, Shubranshu and his team have built and deployed CGNet Swara: a voice-based portal, freely accessible via mobile phone, that allows citizens to report, listen to, and discuss stories of local interest. To use it, citizens call a phone number (+91 8050068000) using any mobile (or fixed line) phone. Callers are prompted to press "1" to record a new message, and "2" to listen to messages that have already been recorded. Once a message has been recorded from the field, professional, trained journalists, who access the system using a web-based interface, review and verify the report. Approved reports are then made available for playback over the phone. The reports also can be accessed on the CGNet Swara website.


Speaker bio: Shubhranshu Choudhary is a Knight International Journalism Fellow and the founder of CGNet Swara. Shubhranshu was a BBC South Asia producer for more than 10 years. He also has served as a media trainer for the BBC World Service Trust, the United Nations and Indian universities. He produced the first television coverage of foreign militants operating in Indian Kashmir and conducted the first television interview with the chief commander of the Kashmiri militant organization. He was a TV and radio producer for the BBC's South Asia bureau for eight years, and a reporter for The Guardian's South Asia bureau for two years. He was a reporter for five years at the Hindi-language Daily Deshbandhu.
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