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Technology for Emerging Markets Kentaro Toyama, PhD Assistant Managing Director Microsoft Research India.

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Presentation on theme: "Technology for Emerging Markets Kentaro Toyama, PhD Assistant Managing Director Microsoft Research India."— Presentation transcript:

1 Technology for Emerging Markets Kentaro Toyama, PhD Assistant Managing Director Microsoft Research India

2 Outline Introduction Three Projects from MSR India –Microfinance and Technology –Warana Unwired –Simultaneous Shared Access

3 Outline Introduction Three Projects from MSR India –Microfinance and Technology –Warana Unwired –Simultaneous Shared Access

4 MSR India Established January, 2005 Goals –World-class academic research –Contributions to Microsoft products and businesses –Support growth of research programs in India and elsewhere Six research areas –Cryptography –Digital Geographics –Hardware, Communications, and Systems –Multilingual Systems –Rigorous Software Engineering –Technology for Emerging Markets Currently ~50 full-time staff, growing Collaborations with government, academia, industry, and NGOs Microsoft Research India Sadashivnagar, Bangalore

5 Technology for Emerging Markets Understand potential technology users in economically poor communities Adapt, invent, or design applications that contribute to socio-economic development of poor communities worldwide Computer-skills camp in Nakalabande, Bangalore (MSR India, Stree Jagruti Samiti, St. Josephs College) Research Goals

6 Interdisciplinary Research Aishwarya Lakshmi Ratan – Public Administration and International Development Jonathan Donner –Communications Nimmi Rangaswamy – Social Anthropology Rajesh Veeraraghavan – Computer Science and Economics Archana Prasad – Animation and Design Kentaro Toyama – Computer Science Randy Wang Udai Singh Pawar – – Computer Science Physics Society Group Technology Individual Society Group Technology Individual Innovation Understanding Impact Innovation Understanding Impact Rikin Gandhi – Astrophysics Indrani Medhi Design –

7 Warana Unwired Rural Microfinance and ITRural Kiosk Entrepreneurs Simultaneous Shared Access Digital Study Hall IT and Microentrepreneurs Government and Kiosks Udai Singh Pawar Associate Researcher Randy Wang Researcher Jonathan Donner Researcher Aishwarya Lakshmi Ratan Associate Researcher Nimmi Rangaswamy Associate Researcher Rajesh Veeraraghavan Associate Researcher Renee Kuriyan Research Intern Information ecology of small businesses in developing markets Multiplying the value of PCs by allowing many users to access. DVD exchange over postal service and TVs as display for rural education Study on the challenges and uniqueness of rural kiosk entrepreneurs Experiments with computing and communication systems in agriculture The states role in rural kiosk projects, with a focus on Kerala and Andhra Text-Free UI Indrani Medhi Assistant Researcher UIs without text for users who are illliterate and may never have seen a computer before Can computers help existing structures for rural microfinance? Sample Projects MSR India: TEM

8 Outline Introduction Three Projects from MSR India –Microfinance and Technology –Warana Unwired –Simultaneous Shared Access

9 Microfinance and Technology Aishwarya Ratan

10 Exploratory Studies Site visits: Interviews with… –Institution heads –MFI agents –Clients Participant observation Accounts and records Microfinance Institutions Pradan Ujjivan Sanghamitra CCD Mahakalasam BASIX

11 Uses of Microfinance Sustenance (40%) –Fulfil basic consumption –Protect against shocks –Access lumpsums for lifecycle needs Growth (60%) –Enterprise (30%) –Buildup assets: education, home (30%)

12 5 members members 24-36% APR NGO facilitator Cooperative 9-12% APR The group is the MFI Interest accrues to member-borrowers ~33 mn outreach in India Less profitable More welfare focused – flexible payments Most common model in India Commercial 9-12% 24-36% APR External provider is the MFI Interest accrues to 3 rd party intermediary ~8 mn outreach in India More profitable More commercially focused – EMI payments Most common model worldwide SELF - HELP GROUPS JOINT LIABILITY GROUPS MFI Models of Microfinance

13 Case: PRADANs Computer Munshi experiment Problem area Poor quality of financial data No aggregate record Issues Costs associated with: Time spent on accounting each week Mistakes discovered at annual audit Experiment Goals Improve SHG data quality & aggregate data Outsource weekly accounting function – create sustainable business model Methods Have an Accountant with a PC serve a Federation of SHGs Charge nominal fee for data processing service Use manual transport to ferry data back and forth Results Weekly meeting time cut by half Instant evaluation of financial performance of large group of SHGs possible Original workflow Improved workflow (90,000 rural clients, EAST/CENTRAL India) Weekly collections Book-keeping done locally Annual auditing by NGO Weekly collections Copy of transaction record put in drop-box CM updates records & prints balances & dues Annual auditing by NGO

14 Can technology assist microfinance? Front-end IS 1.Account creation (loan, savings & insurance) 1.Collecting client data 2.Screening/ verification 2.Transaction data 3.Processing claims (savings, transfers & insurance) E-payments Enabling e-cash transactions 1.Disbursal of amount (loan) 2.Collection of dues/ payments (loan, savings & insurance) Back-end IS 1.Aggregation of client data 1.Actuarial analysis 2.Target offerings YES! MAYBE! TOUGH!

15 Outline Introduction Three Projects from MSR India –Microfinance and Technology –Warana Unwired –Simultaneous Shared Access

16 Warana Unwired Rajesh Veeraraghavan

17 Over 60% of population in agriculture Mostly small and marginal farmers with 1-3 acres of land Average income of $1-2 per day Agriculture in India

18 Sugarcane Sugar 70 villages, farmers Asias first Bridging Digital Divide pilot ! (1998) Started with ethnographic studies… Warana Wired Village Project

19 Factory FTP PC Warana Farmer DB Standard PC network Weigh stations Landline phone PC enabled Kiosks 54 kiosks in 54 villages Cost: Rs.2.5 crores (US$500,000) Warana Wired Village Project

20 Internet access to farmers Check market price information Agricultural expert system Automate land records Other crazy dreams! Original Goals

21 Internal account MIS: Register land Issues harvesting permit Buy fertilizer through credit Get paystub Query quantity of sugarcane harvested Actual Use

22 High maintenance cost Intermittent power Network flaky PC not optimally used! Mounting Challenges

23 Can we preserve the functionality of the existing PC based system while making the entire system cheaper and more effective? The Problem

24 The Solution: Warana Unwired! SMS-enabled mobile phones PC-based kiosks

25 Factory FTP PC Warana Farmer DB Standard PC network Weigh stations Landline phone PC-enabled kiosks Original PC-Based Set-Up

26 GSM/CDMA SMS network Factory PC Warana Farmer DB Standard PC network Weigh stations SMS-enabled phones New Mobile-Based Set-Up Windows Mobile Remote APIs SMS

27 24-hour access to services –6000 SMS processed 80% of requests for getting sugarcane output 1238 unique farmer requests Response time on harvesting data. –Original: 15 days PC: 2 days Mobile: immediate Telcos interest has perked up. Neighboring cooperatives have expressed interest. Warana Unwired – Results

28 SystemCost/Farmer /Year New PC System 394 Existing PC System 177 SMS Mobile (kiosks) 159 GPRS(kiosks)139 SMS Mobile(without kiosks) 111 GPRS ( no kiosks) 91 Units: Rs Savings over PCs 1 million Rupees /54 villages/1 year ($22,000) Costs

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30 Disbelief to Joy: Farmer from Satve village: Initial Disbelief! Once he sees it on the phone! he gets excited and says: Barabar hai, eh tho bahuth accha hai. The information is exact and it is very good. Demands from other nearby villages: Farmer from Angali village: Demands access! We were trying to tell them we need to really test to see whether this works successfully, the farmer replied: I saw messages are coming on the mobile phone. There is no problem. So where is the question of success? Farmer Response

31 So far: Successful replacement of kiosks in seven villages. System in operation since October Expansion to other villages in cooperative To do: Analysis of feedback and surveys for concrete impact Pilots with other cooperatives Status

32 Outline Introduction Three Projects from MSR India –Microfinance and Technology –Warana Unwired –Simultaneous Shared Access

33 Simultaneous Shared Access PCs Udai Singh Pawar Kentaro Toyama

34 At school after school… One PC, many children.

35 Solution: MultiPoint Provide a mouse for every student –One cursor for each mouse, with different colours or shapes –USB mice Have tried up to 20 –Content modified Game-like environment Early research work by Bier (1991), Inkpen (1995), and others.

36 MultiPoint

37 MultiPoint: Status Experimental results: –Children understand and enjoy multiple mice –On rote memorization tasks, games can be designed to allow as much learning as with one-PC-per-child –Strong gender differences w.r.t. sharing Publications in ICTD2006, CHI2007 Microsoft SDK shipped June 2007! Mouse on Each Desk project in Education Technologies group Ongoing work with Azim Premji Foundation Before After

38 Split Screen

39 Multi-Monitor

40 Continuum of Sharing Shared PC Nothing personal Personal mouse (MultiPoint) Shared processor, monitor & keyboard Shared processor & monitor Shared processor Nothing shared Personal mouse & keyboard (Split Screen) Personal mouse, keyboard & monitor (Thin client/ Multi-Monitor) True personal computer

41 Summary Introduction Three Projects from MSR India –Microfinance and Technology –Warana Unwired –Simultaneous Shared Access Increasing use of technology Technologys relevance not always clear

42 ICTD Conference Co-organized by MSR India, UC Berkeley, IIIT-Bangalore, MIT, CMU First: May 25-26, 2006, Berkeley, CA Focus on rigorous academic work, with all papers double-blind peer- reviewed Establishing a community of academic researchers in technology for development Next one in December 15-16, 2007 Bangalore, India UC Berkeley, site of ICTD 2006 IEEE/ACM International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development

43 Thank you!


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