Monday, June 10, 2013

Penplusbytes Takes NYU Graduate Students Through ICTs and Citizen Engagement

Penplusbytes, a leader in promoting the use of ICTs to enhance the work of journalists and citizen journalists, hosted a group of graduate students from the New York University (NYU), who are interested in how the organisation uses ICT tools to empower citizens to participate in issues of governance and also engage with public officials.

The group who paid the learning visit to the offices of Penplusbytes on Thursday 6th June, was from the Center for Global Affairs of the New York University and headed by Barbara Borst, an Adjunct Associate Professor from the center. They are in Ghana to study different aspects of the country’s development with particular interest in democracy and governance and the influence of ICT in Ghana’s development.

The group was received by Jerry Sam, Projects Director at Penplusbytes and he took them through Penplusbytes’ flagship African Elections Project which has covered 12 elections in Africa. He explained how journalists are trained in the use of ICTs for elections coverage and also how the organisation has over the years developed mobile applications, ICT tools and online platforms that have encouraged and enabled citizen interactions and involvement in the electoral process and post- elections transparency and accountability of elected officials on the continent.

Jane Mcclenahan, an MS candidate in Global Affairs at the NYU expressed appreciation to team Penplusbytes saying that, “I am grateful for this opportunity to learn more about the use of ICTs in Ghana and Africa’s democratic process through Penplusbytes, and I have gained insights into how ICTs have enabled citizen participation in the governance process.” She added that she will share with others what she learnt and hopes it will make a meaningful contribution to her research work.

PENPLUSBYTES is a registered not for profit organisation since 18th July 2001 with the vision of driving excellence in ICT journalism.

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