Introductions thread: What makes you tick?


Welcome. Some of us know each other. Others, not. Introduce yourself!


  1. Where in the world are you?
  2. What stage of your career are you at?
  3. What are you current challenges?
  4. What gets you fired up about technology and development?
  5. Cats or dogs?

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pinned globally #2


I’ve already emailed you all a partial biography, but here you go!

  1. Washington D.C.
  2. Mid-career ICT4D communications consultant
  3. Staying up to date on #tech4dev use cases
  4. Are we in an interim period before robots rule us all?
  5. Both. But I don’t have a yard - so kitties.


Hi everyone! Some of you have already seen emails from me, but for those that have not my name is Allana Nelson and I am the Program Manager for the Digital Principles portfolio at DIAL.

  1. Where in the world are you? I am based in Washington, DC
  2. What stage of your career are you at? I am mid-career
  3. What are you current challenges? Current challenges include finding ways to represent such a diverse community in the Digital Principles material we produce. Reach out to me if you have awesome ideas or resources you want to share!
  4. What gets you fired up about technology and development? Seeing how technology really has changed development in a significant way - and the incredible future opportunities this presents.
  5. Cats or dogs? Dogs. Specifically, puppies. :heart_eyes:


Where in the world are you? Washington DC
What stage of your career are you at? mid-career ICT4D
What are you current challenges? Being in Washington, DC, it’s difficult to stay up to date on all the work that is happening in ICT4D.
What gets you fired up about technology and development? The potential for true integration of T4D into international development so that it is no longer a silo and its value is understood across and within implementing organizations, funders, countries etc.
Cats or dogs? No contest, dogs. #adoptdontshop


Hi all! Currently in, Portland, Oregon, USA. Global citizen. :earth_africa:

Mid-career? I’m very lucky to do what I love, so I hadn’t thought of it in “stages” particularly!

I’m currently working on questions around long-term sustainability of digital development projects, particularly open source software. There are many smaller challenges wrapped up in that bigger one, though!

There’s a huge ceiling to break through of “the way we’ve always done things” getting in the way of doing innovative, new, and smart things. I’m very lucky to be working on some projects that get to disrupt some of that “old school” thinking. (See a favorite quote below.)

Cats, but currently pet-less. Too much travel! :crying_cat_face:


Where in the world are you?
Medellín (Colombia), but consider myself a citizen of the world since I have lived in other places and travel a lot.

What stage of your career are you at?
New beginning. After founding MAKAIA ( and leading it for 11 years, I have moved into a new role in the organization. We have hired an Executive Director and my new role is on partnership and business development and designing the long term sustainability strategy of the organization

What are you current challenges?
Design and implement the long term sustainability plan for MAKAIA. Also, communications. We do amazing, innovative, on the ground work, but have a really hard time communicating and showing our work to a global audience.

What gets you fired up about technology and development?
That it changes people forever. That is always changing and we need to change constantly as well, so it’s always pushing us into new ways of doing things. That our work is always different, life changing and rewarding.

Cats or dogs?
Cat, named Leia :slight_smile:


I have lived here in Palo Alto California since moving here to work at Intel over 30 years ago. Since then I was at Oracle and then shifted to consulting when we had our daughter. I co-founded the People Centered Internet with Vint Cerf and we launched October 2015 at Stanford University - recognizing the need to speak up for an Internet of the People by the People, for the people.

Current challenges are working on a recovery response to the NorCal Fire to marshall the technology community for this disaster so close to the Silicon Valley.

No cats no dogs but we did have rabbits.


Welcome @MeiLinFung! I’d be fascinated to hear more about more about your work on the NorCal Fire. I moved from West Sonoma County to Washington DC seven years ago, but have quite deep roots in the North Bay. Also, I looked up the People Centered Internet. Interesting initiative. Glad you are here.


Hi everyone, My name is Ed Clinkett. I am a Digital Transformation, Technology, Innovation and Change specialist. Passionate about international sustainable development and change.

Where in the world are you? Currently based in the UK
What stage of your career are you at? Chief Digital Officer & Founder of ESRC Consulting
What are you current challenges? Finding a way of contributing and helping with Digital change in developing or emerging markets. Who to reach out to.
What gets you fired up about technology and development? Everything, knowing that problems can be solved through creative and innovative solutions and the fact that to achieve this you collaborate with all.
Cats or dogs? Fish :slight_smile:


Welcome Ed! Glad you joined us. Holler if you’ve got any questions.


Hi everyone, my name is Clement Stephen. I’m building my career as a development practitioner. I have a good IT background with 5+ years experience in monitoring and evaluation.

I live in my home country Nigeria and work in capital Abuja
I would say i’m in the middle of my career
Lack of professional training in the area of development in my country
Technology makes live a lot easier, it’s an infrastructure for development


We imagine that it is possible to conceive of a “Marshall Plan” for Puerto Rico which can cross fertilize with intiatives on Living Learning community laboratories in NorCal and NYC


Hi I’m Andy

Where in the world are you? 

I’m in the UK, specifically I work at Sheffield Hallam University

What stage of your career are you at?

I’m a greybeard. I’ve been working in user centred technology design for 28 years, in participatory design for 18 years, and in ICTD for 10+ years.

What are you current challenges?

The same as they have been for many years - working out how technologists, and particularly technology researchers with limited language skills and homes in the North can best make positive contributions to a participatory vision of sustainable human development.

What gets you fired up about technology and development?

People learning new creative responses to other people’s technology and devising ways to take control of tech to address their own challenges. Seeing technologists learn new ways of relating to other people, to technologies and to themselves.

Cats or dogs?

Definitely dogs.


Thanks for your intro, Andy, and for your intriguing first post on the forum. Minimal ethical standards are a huge picture topic - looking forward to reviewing the document.


Hi. I’m Jayne Cravens, and I’m based in the Portland, Oregon area in the USA. I’m a researcher, consultant and trainer re: communications, volunteer involvement, and community engagement. I oversaw the transition of the UN’s Online Volunteering Service to the UN Volunteers program, and was a co-manager of the Secretary General’s United Nations Information Technology Service (UNITeS), also at UNV. I’ve worked for various UN and NGO initiatives. Currently, I’m working with a nonprofit based in Austin, Texas called Knowbility, that promotes accessible design for web sites and online tools. I’m working with their OpenAIR (Accessibility Internet Rally) specifically.

I’m really excited about the Principles for Digital Development and their focus on human-centered design. However, I’m disappointed at the lack of emphasis on accessible design for people with disabilities and people using assistive technologies.

What gets me fired up about tech and development? The idea of how it can empower marginalized communities, including women, girls and people with disabilities.

I have a dog, Lucinda, and a cat, Gray Max.


Hi @jcravens ! Welcome. I actually think your suggestion about accessible design is an excellent one for further exploration. I am currently developing a conversation series, and we are always thinking about the relevance of the Principles in different contexts. I’d like to discuss further - send me a PM? Thanks!


Right now, I’m knee deep in recruiting nonprofits, NGOs and charities to participate in OpenAIR, a hackathon by a nonprofit called Knowbility. I’m on deadline - I’m trying to get 45 nonprofits to sign up well before the teams begin designing on Feb 1 - the nonprofits need plenty of time to make sure their current web site is up-to-date (if they have such) or to put together all of the text, graphics and photos they want on a web site, and to fill out our client needs survey. Also, I’m just back from Thanksgiving break. So I’m quite slammed. I would be able to next week!

  • Where in the world are you? Belgium / Africa
  • What stage of your career are you at ? ICT Project Manager
  • What are you current challenges ? Connecting African and EU Digital startups, Teach and Raise the awareness of children in STEM careers
  • What gets you fired up about technology and development ? Deep convicted that technology is the best tool for sustainable development !
  • Cats or dogs? None of the above, better a Robot :robot: :heart_eyes:


Hi, my name is Peter Stremus and I am located in Belgium.
I am working at IBM as the European Sales Eminence executive. In this role, skill and knowledge development are the key goals for which we develop and implement digital and social platforms.
One could say that I am 3/4’s in my career…
My current challenge is how to balance digital education with traditional methods to optimize the learning effects.
I believe that education technoiogy - edtech - has an important role to play in developing skills, especially in remote or underserved areas. Bringing technology into education is a way to avoid a digital divide.
Currently without a dog.