Category Archives: Voice technologies


Tackling Global Challenges Collaboratively: theme of the 6th International Symposium “Perspectives on ICT4D”

Amsterdam 23 May 2019 – The annual symposium “Perspectives on ICT4D”, organized by Victor de Boer and Anna Bon, was focused this year on transdisciplinarity — collaboration between academics and non-academics — in search of solutions for the Global Challenges of our Age. The theme was reflected in the talks by the speakers: André Baart, from […]

Around 100 people participated in the symposium

Meteo data services in Burkina Faso

Talking about “small data”: new student project about meteo data services for African farmers

Despite the fact that more than 70% of Africa’s population depends on agriculture for basic life needs, and in Africa’s drylands rain-fed agriculture is widespread,  reliable meteorological data about rainfall and weather forecasts — in Europe timely and accurate — is often not available for African farmers. Recent studies in rural areas of Burkina Faso and Ghana have […]


Proceedings of the 5th International Symposium “Perspectives on ICT4D” now published at http://ceur-ws.org/Vol-2120/

Co-located with 10th ACM Web Science Conference (WebSci’18)
Amsterdam, the Netherlands, May 27, 2018.

Edited by

Anna Bon *
Victor de Boer *
Christophe Guéret **
Gayo Diallo ***
Jaap Gordijn **

* Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, The Netherlands,
** Accenture Labs, Dublin, Ireland,
*** Université de Bordeaux, France,


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Kasadaka project nominated for Amsterdam Science and Innovation Award 2018

Tha Kasadaka project, that was developed by André Baart and colleagues from the W4RA team, extensively tested by students in the VU ICT4D course 2018 and deployed in the field in Mali, at Radio Sikidolo in Konobougou, has been nominated, as one of the five finalists in the Amsterdam Science and Innovation Award 2018.The finale will […]


W4RA team visits Radio Sikidolo: key user of our voice system in Mali

Members of the W4RA team and partners from AOPP visited Radio Sikidolo in Konobougou, Mali. Radio Sikidolo and W4RA have worked together on the co-creation of the Foroba Blon radio/mobbile voice-based system  since 2012. Adama Tessougué, director  of Radio Sikidolo and key-user of the Foroba Blon system want to use this system to collect reports […]

work@RadioSikidolo

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A new “Voice Service Development Kit” by André Baart

Building ICTs to connect the unconnected people in e.g. rural Africa, is challenging due to the language and literacy gap. Voice-based ICT systems have proven useful, e.g. for meteo services or market information. However, in general they are much more complicated to build that text-based systems, for ICT and Web developers. To make this easier […]


New research in W4RA program by three master students Information Science@VU

The W4RA team at VU is proud to present three new master theses: by Justyna Kleczar (July 2017), Reshmi Sarkar (June 2017) and Jamila Daoudi (May 2017). Justyna Kleczar’s work is on speech technologies for underresourced languages. It comprises a new methodology, including very comprehensive tooling, which facilitates and allows development of new voice-based applications. […]


W4RA broadcast live on Burkina radio

Many farmers in Africa are in urgent need for weather forecasts and  rain data services, to better plan and improve their harvests. However, language and illiteracy issues, as well a total lack of computers, smartphones and internet, pose  obstacles to access this very relevant information. Last week, the W4RA team from VU Amsterdam held a […]

LaVoix

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ICT4D course for master students at VU, 2017

The VU ICT4D course 2017 will make you experience the  “Unconnected World”, or rather: how large populations do not reach the Web. While we spend our lives in the era of live-streaming (twitch), cloud-computing (google drive) and voice-based home assistants (amazon alexa), billions still live without an internet connection and are unable to read and […]