Unique session of TechCamp in Moldova (VIDEO)
Chişinău / Moldova.ORG / -- A two-day interactive conference and training sessions took place in Moldova this month. The event called «TECHCAMP MOLDOVA» was organized with the support of the U.S. State Department and the Moldovan e-Government Center.
In essence its goals were establishing effective cooperation between civil society, local government and IT community using modern technology, particularly Internet resources, applications, and open databases.
TechCamp is a program under Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s Civil Society (CS) 2.0 initiative – an effort to galvanize the technology community to assist CS organizations across the globe by providing capabilities, resources and assistance to enable CS organizations (CSOs) to harness the latest ICT advances to build their digital capacity.
TechCamp Moldova took place on 15-16th of July and it is the fourth event in a series supported by U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's Civil Society 2.0. The event pairs leaders in the technology community with civil society organizations to provide training, resources, and assistance that enables civil society organizations to harness the latest technologies for building their capacities and advance their missions.
Lithuania was the previous state which hosted the delegation. There Hillary Clinton herself took part in the conference at Vilnius. Also the unique project has been held in Chile and Indonesia. Usually participants have two days to learn how to use new informational technology to activate civic community participation in state’s life.
During the conference tech. trainers facilitated informal discussions in small groups and workshops with CSOs about topics ranging from mapping to data scraping and to citizen journalism. At the end of the first day, participants developed a list of problems statements. For example, "How do we motivate and mobilize citizens to force government to create transparent, prioritized plans that lead to better services for the public?"
One of the highlights of the event became the Moldova's participation in the “Open Government Partnership”, an International project. “Open Government Data” refers to data and information produced or requested by the Government or by the entities under the control of the Government.
This is an important resource for strengthening the participatory democracy and economic competitiveness of a country. The main objectives of this project are to provide transparency, participatory Governance, social and commercial values.
Open Government Partnership means an innovation to serve ordinary citizens to have accessible, accountable and transparent government that is ready to rapid response to citizens’ needs.
The objectives of the Partnership are to combat corruption, to use new technologies and to improve services’ quality. The project is working on open government web site, which has 200 government data sets at date.gov.md.
“TechCamp Moldova” facilitators were Veronica Cretu, the president of the “CMB” Training Center, NGO located in Chisinau, and Noel Dickover, head of the eDiplomacy office's Civil Society 2.0 implementation effort, United States Department of State.
The participants of the meeting were representatives from CISCO, MICROSOFT, IBM, State representatives, NGOs and local technology communities. Also at the event participated as speakers or trainers: Stela Mocan (Executive Director, Moldova's eGovernment Center), Marcus Micheli (Deputy Chief of Mission, U.S. Embassy, Abdoulaye Seck (World Bank representative in Moldova), Kent Larson (USAID Country Director), Andrew McLaughlin (Civic Commons), Camilla Hawthorne (Radio Free Europe), Chris Radcliff (Eventful), Wayne Moses Burke (Open Forum Foundation), Gregory Asmolov (Global Voices, Runet Echo, BerkmaCenter), Vlad Spânu (Moldova Foundation), Anna Taranenko (IREX) and many others.
There have been many training sessions about the work of the social web platforms, such as e-mapping solutions, that already exist in many countries as a resource for the publication of "signals" about certain incidents. For instance, any citizen can upload a public incident using the e-map platform at alerte.Moldova.org.
As a side note, at the conference, it was announced that soon, in Moldova Internet users will be able to use PayPal for their e-commerce needs, a insignificant issue for the people in the West, but apparently a huge problem for Moldovan citizens to purchase goods online from Western-based sites.
Participants and organizers about TECHCAMP in Moldova (VIDEO)
Informational (R)Evolution in Moldova (PHOTO)