Lack of both time and connectivity prevented me from using the Net more effectively in Quito. The recent volcano eruption was also to blame, at least partially. I could neither connect from the hotel room as the UNDP SITA config had changed and I was not aware of it. At any rate, the hotel was charging 35 cents per minute for local calls and 2 dollars per min for international. Is this really the 21st century?

I arrived on Monday almost at midnight and the car driver gave me a great overview of the new president elect who was elected the night before. The new guy is also a former military man who is on the center/left and has widespread popular support.

The mission went pretty well. We saw many key organizations and stakeholders. There is indeed a niche to steer the existing National Connectivity Agenda in a new direction (less techie and less infrastructure) given the upcoming new government and related promises for change. The DOI, hand in hand with the NHDR 2001 on ICTD, could provide the substantive elements to then conduct a more participatory approach for the Agenda under UNDP’s leadership. The CO also needs a little support to make this happen as the main areaa such as governance and poverty are still looking at ICT as an external factor.

The mission report should be finaliseb by the end of this week


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