Categories
Growing the Internet

Putting the Internet at the Heart of Africa’s Future

The Internet changes everything.

It connects one person to another, one community to another, one nation to another. It allows for innovation and the delivery of healthcare, education, financial and other government services.  It allows us to see places we may never have had the chance to see and for people to become friends with those who would have otherwise been strangers. It is an Internet of Opportunity.

The Internet is life changing. So much so that all 193 world leaders at the United Nations summit in September 2015 agreed that connectivity was so important they made it a concrete target as part of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Today, the total number of people online is around 3.4 billion, which is a major achievement for the world.

But that also means nearly four billion people, 57% worldwide, are not connected to the Internet because of a range of issues, including a lack of content, skills, availability or unaffordable access.

This is still a shared global challenge, and much of that challenge is keenly felt in Africa.

This is why the Internet Society is participating in the 4th African Internet Summit in Botswana’s capital Gaborone this week. This annual meeting brings together Internet savvy people from all sectors. Business, tech, governments, policy, and civil society. It gives us an opportunity to collaborate on how to accelerate access and empower everyone on the Continent through the Internet.

Beyond Access

This is an important and exciting time, especially when one considers that Africa is home to some of the world’s fastest growing economies. The Continent sits today at a tipping point, poised to take full advantage of the digital revolution and to make a technological leap forward.

We believe that building a better, stronger Internet by Africa, for Africa will hinge on two key considerations – the ability of stakeholders to work together and having the right policy frameworks in place to support Internet growth and adoption.

Most African countries are already pursuing progressive and urgent policies of creating infrastructure, capability, and skills to connect the unconnected. For example, they are putting in place Internet Exchange Points to keep local traffic locally and to avoid costly transits through Europe or America. But more importantly, Africa has a growing understanding that in many cases, cost and availability are no longer the only barriers to access.

Rather, it’s the need for education about the benefits of Internet access and online skills and training that stand in the way. This is an important evolution that all stakeholders should analyze, ensuring that potential new users get the skills they need to make the best use of the Internet and that the Internet has the most relevant content for them.

The next wave of policies can help adoption and use of the Internet catch up with availability.

A Framework for Growth

The needs across the African region are so broad and so different that a single government, organization or company cannot address them all.

Building on decades of experience developing enabling environments with local communities and governments, we’ve observed the importance of adopting a holistic approach to Access, encompassing all stakeholders. Private investment, progressive government policies and user empowerment are the pillars of a scalable framework that will speed deployment and adoption of the Internet across Africa.

Together with our colleagues who are gathered in Botswana this week, The Internet Society understands the enormous potential for the Internet in Africa, and for the Internet to define Africa’s future. We know that we need to continue to build strong foundations today in order for Africa to take advantage of everything the Internet offers tomorrow. The Internet Society is deeply committed to partnering with our colleagues at The African Internet Summit to advance this bright future. We look forward to a productive week.

Categories
Growing the Internet Internet Governance

Connecting Communities at RIPE72 in Copenhagen!

RIPE — the Réseaux IP Européens Network Coordination Centre – is one of the five regional Internet registries that allocates Internet numbering resources that help the Internet run.

We’ll be moderating a panel that brings together people from RIPE’s Middle East, Eurasia, and South Eastern European regions.

On its own this sounds like a lot of other panels at a lot of other events.

But this one, at least for me, is something special.

It will bring together people from very different RIPE regional communities. They come together at this important convening event of the full RIPE community to build bridges with each other and across RIPE. 

ISOC partners with RIPE colleagues throughout the year to help plan and coordinate meetings, to speak on key regional Internet issues or to lend technical assistance, or to find ways to measure Internet traffic together so that people can see the growth of the Internet in an understandable and simple way. Together we build bridges that connect people, communities, countries, and regions.

Connecting the next billion comes down to a lot of things. It comes down to development, policy, technology, and often times navigating some difficult landscapes – both literally and figuratively.  But, it really relies on building and bridging communities to work together. And, ultimately it comes down to people. People who are dedicated to building the Internet, visualizing the Internet, and training people to train each other for sustainable Internet infrastructure development.  

We overcome barriers together – barriers that include things like landscapes, policies, lack of trained people, and lack of infrastructure.

And – while it would be easy to get lost in the details or overwhelmed by some of the challenges – we work through and solve problems together to amplify the work our teams are doing.  

The key thing about this panel is that it brings together people who live in very different countries, and highlights their community within a community that helps to develop the Internet through local solutions that are bridged by shared technical solutions.

They will share ideas about what has worked in their regions, and – more importantly – what did not. 

By sharing local solutions they build bridges with the entire RIPE community and the broader Internet community.  

Technology is a common demoninator across regions, but there’s more to building the Internet than technology. Like most things that work well, it takes people working together. 

You can do this too. We’ll be LiveStreaming the panel and you’ll be able to join online, chat, and build connections. 

Join Bridging the RIPE Community on 27 May 9 – 10:30 CET 

Get more information on the panel and other events on the RIPE website

Categories
Growing the Internet Women in Tech

Gender Parity Starts with the Internet

Today, on International Women’s Day, I want to acknowledge the many contributions made by women to the development and growth of the Internet. I am also asking others to join me in the Internet Society’s effort to “Shine the Light” on women who use the Internet to innovate and make a difference –in their families, in their communities and for themselves. Women around the world have made tremendous advances socially, economically and politically, but progress towards gender parity will be stunted if we do not increase the number of women who have access to the one technology that has transformed the lives of billions of people – the Internet.

The disparities are evident. Worldwide, there are 200 million fewer women than men online. In developed countries women and men have access to the Internet at close to the same rates, but in the developing world women are 25% less likely than men to have access, and the number jumps to 45% in regions such as Sub-Saharan Africa. Even in rapidly growing economies such as Asia and the Middle East, there are 35% fewer women than men online.

This gender gap in the number of women with Internet access can be measured economically–according to the Broadband Commission Working Group every 10% increase in access to broadband translated to a 1.38% growth in gross domestic product– but equally important, it can be measured socially. Women who have Internet access are more likely to use it in their daily lives. They use their connections to access education, health care, government services and to organize their families and communities for social, economic and political empowerment.

With access to the Internet, women in Bolivia learning digital literacy skills can now take part in the online job market, and in India they are creating micro enterprises using the Internet in fields like fishery and sustainable agriculture. The Internet is a powerful tool in the hands of women for organizing their villages, starting new businesses and building local economies.

While we know there remains significant work to be done, I believe that women are already empowered to make a difference and to bring about change. We need to highlight their accomplishments and achievements so they serve as a beacon for other women and girls.

There is a powerful community of women who are successfully using the Internet to create opportunities and change lives. Many of these women have faced personal and professional barriers, whether they are from a remote village in Pakistan, or an executive for one of the largest technology companies in the world. I like to think of these women as digital trailblazers.

Women such as Nighat Dad, a lawyer and Internet activist who founded the Digital Rights Foundation and included in TIME magazine’s list of next generation leaders for helping Pakistani women fight online harassment, and Mariel Garcia who organizes workshops for young women in Mexico on online privacy.

We need to Shine the Light on these women and all women who are using the Internet to make an impact. Whether it’s adding content that is relevant to other women, encouraging and inspiring other women and girls who are just getting online, or creating and innovating – women have a central role in helping to build the Internet of Opportunity. So as we focus on achieving gender parity for women this International Women’s Day, let’s also celebrate the voice of women online and the many achievements they have made through the Internet. #Shinethelight

Categories
Growing the Internet

Explicando a exclusão digital no Brasil

A penetração da Internet no Brasil vem crescendo de forma constante ao longo dos últimos anos, um êxito digno de celebração. Entretanto, com o advento da Internet móvel, a adoção da Internet fica bem atrás da sua disponibilidade, por razões que se tornam imprescindíveis entender.

De 2006 a 2013, a taxa de crescimento anual composta (CAGR) de penetração da Internet foi de 9%. Este número destaca duas tendências importantes: em primeiro lugar, a Internet tornou-se muito mais acessível; em segundo, uma grande parte da população do Brasil apropriou-se rapidamente da Internet. Em 2013, havia mais de 103 milhões de brasileiros usando a Internet, que representa 51,6% da população nacional.


Tabela 1. Fonte ITU (2014)

Embora o crescimento no uso da Internet tenha sido rápido, existe uma grande parte da população que nunca acessou a Internet. Para que os atores (ou partes interessadas) abordem tal exclusão digital, é importante entender sua origem.

A primeira hipótese que se poderia enfocar é se o acesso à Internet está disponível para aqueles que desejam usar a Internet. A tabela abaixo mostra que a disponibilidade já não é um problema tão grande. Devido à ampla disponibilidade de celulares, quase 90% dos brasileiros possuem acesso à Internet móvel em 2013, muito mais do que os 52% que usam a Internet.


Tabela 2. Fonte ITU (2014)

Uma explicação para a diferença entre a disponibilidade e a adoção da Internet móvel pode ser as condições de acesso ou acessibilidade – o fator de custo pode colocar o acesso à Internet fora do alcance de muitas pessoas. Nesta linha, há evidências interessantes. Com base nos dados disponíveis de 2013, o custo da banda larga móvel foi de 3,23% da renda per capita média, abaixo da taxa máxima de 5% proposta pela Comissão de Banda Larga para o Desenvolvimento Digital da União Internacional de Telecomunicações (UIT). A banda larga fixa, com um custo de 1,42% da renda per capita média, é ainda mais acessível em locais onde está disponível.

Se não se trata da disponibilidade ou da acessibilidade, para entender quais são as principais barreiras da adoção da Internet, recorreu-se à pesquisa anual de TICs do CETIC.br (Centro de Estudos Regional para o Desenvolvimento da Sociedade da Informação no Brasil). Este é um recurso único e de valor inestimável, não só pela série histórica desde 2006, mas também porque alcança indivíduos e domicílios que ainda não estão conectados à Internet e pergunta quais são suas razões para não acessar a Internet.

O gráfico a seguir ilustra as principais razões identificadas por não-usuários da Internet entre 2007 e 2013 – os indivíduos podem escolher a quantidade de razões que consideram relevantes. Os resultados confirmam especialmente que a disponibilidade e a acessibilidade não são temas relevantes, já que somente ¼ dos não-usuários identificou este motivo. Por outro lado, 70% mencionou a falta de necessidade e interesse, e 70% também citou a falta de habilidades, como motivos principais.


Tabela 3. Fonte CETIC.br (2014)

Isto sugere uma área-chave para atuação das múltiplas partes interessadas em aumentar a adoção da Internet, que deveriam focar no lado da demanda – oferecer conteúdo local relevante para despertar interesse em não usuários e capacitação para que possam ingressar na rede. Os temas no lado do provimento (disponibilidade e custo do acesso à Internet) continuam importantes, porém são secundários de acordo com os resultados da pesquisa.

É  interessante notar que os números da pesquisa ilustrados na Tabela 3 não são representativos do total da população, e representam os motivos identificados por uma quantidade decrescente de não-usuários da Internet. Conforme demonstrado na linha negra da tabela abaixo, o número de usuários entrevistados que não usaram a Internet vêm diminuindo  constantemente. Neste sentido, os 70% de não-usuários que mencionaram a falta de necessidade ou interesse como motivo para não usar a Internet em 2013, representam aproximadamente 29% da população, uma tendência que tem sido estável ao longo do tempo. Esta linha igualmente se aplica de maneira geral às principais tendências.


Tabela 4. Fonte CETIC.br (2014)

Como resultado, é importante concentrar os esforços na persistente minoria dos brasileiros que não são afetados pelo aumento da disponibilidade ou pelos custos mais baixos. Ao se aprofundar nos dados, dentro do grupo que menciona a falta de necessidade ou interesse, há uma diferença relativamente pequena por região, gênero, grau de instrução e renda. O único indicador em que há uma diferença significativa refere-se à faixa etária, na qual apenas 27% dos indivíduos entre 10 e 15 anos mencionam a falta de necessidade ou interesse como motivos para não acessar a Internet, ao passo que 81% dos indivíduos com mais de 60 anos apontam esta razão. No que tange aos outros fatores, há ainda menos diferenças entre os distintos grupos.


Tabela 5. Fonte CETIC.br (2014)

As conclusões extraídas destes dados são claras. Com a maior quantidade de usuários cobertos por acesso à Internet móvel, a disponibilidade e os custos desempenham um papel menos determinante na decisão de acessar a Internet. Para os responsáveis por políticas públicas no Brasil, há valiosas lições que podem ajudar a melhorar o número de usuários de Internet, e, portanto, permitir que os cidadãos se beneficiem das várias vantagens oferecidas pela Internet.

Entendemos que estas lições também serão úteis para outros países que buscam melhorar o nível de acesso à Internet: para estes países, outra lição é o valor dos indicadores detalhados coletados ao longo dos anos pelo CETIC.br.

Categories
Growing the Internet

Explaining the Digital Divide in Brazil

Internet penetration in Brazil has been growing steadily for the past years, a success worth celebrating. However, with the advent of the mobile Internet, adoption now lags well behind availability for reasons that are important to understand.

From 2006 to 2013 the compound annual growth rate (CAGR) for Internet penetration was 9 percent. This figure highlights two important trends: first that the Internet has become much more accessible, and second that a large part of the Brazilian population has quickly adopted the Internet. For 2013, there were more than 103 million Brazilians using the Internet, which represents 51.6 percent of the country’s population.

Figure 1 . Source ITU (2014)

However, although the growth on Internet usage has been rapid, there is still a large part of the population that has never accessed the Internet. In order to address this gap, it is important first to understand its source. The first area one would look is whether Internet access is available to those who wish to access it. The following chart shows that availability is largely not an issue. Thanks to the widespread availability of mobile, almost 90% of Brazilians had access to the mobile Internet by 2013, far greater than the 52% who were using the Internet.

Figure 2 . Source ITU (2014)

The explanation for the gap between the availability of mobile Internet and adoption might be affordability – the cost might put Internet access out of reach of many. However, here again recent evidence is encouraging. Based on the numbers available for 2013, the cost of mobile broadband was 3.23% of average per capita income, well below the maximum threshold rate of 5% put forward by the ITU Broadband Commission on Digital Development. Fixed broadband, at a cost of 1.42% of average per capita income, is yet more affordable where available.

To learn what the main barriers to Internet adoption are if not availability and affordability, we turn to an annual ICT survey carried out by the Regional Center for Studies on the Development of the Information Society (CETIC) in Brazil. This is an invaluable and rare resource, not just because it has been repeated yearly since 2006, but also because it asks individuals and households who are not on the Internet for their reasons.

The following chart tracks the main reasons that non-Internet users gave from 2007 to 2013 – individuals could choose as many reasons as were relevant to them. The results confirmed, in particular, that availability and affordability were not significant issues, as only one-quarter of non-users gave those as reasons. On the other hand, 70% cited a lack of need or interest and 70% also cited a lack of skills, as significant reasons.

Figure 3 . Source CETIC Brazil (2014)

This suggests a key area of focus for stakeholders seeking to increase adoption should be to focus on the demand-side – to provide relevant local content to interest non-users and training to enable them to get online. The supply-side issues – availability and affordability of access – are still important, but secondary, according to the survey results.

However, it is worth keeping in mind that the survey numbers in Figure 3 are not representative of the entire population, but represent the reasons cited by an ever-decreasing pool of non-Internet users. As shown by the black line in the graph below, the number of users in the survey who have not used the Internet was steadily decreasing. Thus, while 70% of non-users cited a lack of need or interest as a reason for not using the Internet in 2013, that represents about 29% of the population, a trend which has been fairly stable over time. The same is largely true for the other main trends.

Figure 4 . Source CETIC Brazil (2014)

As a result, it is important to focus efforts on this persistent minority of Brazilians who are not swayed by increased availability or lower costs. Delving further into the data, it appears that, within the group citing a lack of need or interest, there is relatively little difference by region, gender, education level, and income. The only factor for which there are significant differences is based on age group, where only 27% of 10-15 years cite a lack of need or interest as a reason not to adopt, while 81% of those over 60 cite that as a reason. For the other factors, there are even less differentiators across the various groups.

Figure 5 . Source CETIC Brazil (2014)

The conclusions drawn from this information are clear. As more users are covered by mobile Internet access, availability and affordability play less of a role in the decision not to adopt the Internet. For policy makers in Brazil, this draws valuable lessons that can help increase the number of Internet users, and thus allow its citizens to benefit from the many advantages offered by the Internet. We believe that these lessons are also true for other countries trying to increase the level of Internet adoption – for them, another lesson is the value of the detailed data gathered over the years by CETIC.

This article is also available in Spanish and Portuguese.

Categories
Growing the Internet Improving Technical Security Privacy

The Mobile Divide

Thanks to the growth of the mobile Internet, there are now three percentages that are relevant to the digital divide globally: 94, 48, and 28.

All three are amazing.

Mobile telephony grew faster than almost anyone would have predicted 15 years ago, to the point where at least 94% of the world’s population receives a signal. The great news is that, as fast as mobile telephony took off and leap-frogged fixed telephony in the developing world, the mobile Internet has taken off even faster.

Internet access can be added to a mobile network with far less investment than building the original network, leading to a rapid rollout of mobile Internet service that already covers at least 48% of the population worldwide. And from a standing start just six or seven years ago, more than 28% of the population worldwide have already subscribed.

These numbers mask significant regional variation, of course. In developed Asia Pacific, 99% of the population has a 3G signal, and 103% have subscribed, given multiple subscriptions for some. On the other hand, in Sub-Saharan Africa, where 84% of the population has a mobile signal, 35% have a 3G signal, and so far only 8% have adopted (see below).

The common thread in all developing regions is that availability of Internet is no longer the limiting factor – it is always greater than adoption levels, and can relatively easily grow to cover the entire mobile network if needed. The key question should be why potential users who could have service have not taken it?

The answer is two-fold. First, of course, affordability is a key issue, where in some countries broadband still costs 10% or more of average monthly income and is thus out of range for most. Second, though, is relevance. Is there content available in the local language? Is it of interest? Useful? If the answer to these questions is no, then chances are many who could afford Internet access will spend their time and money elsewhere.

The mobile Internet is not just changing the way we think about development, it is evolving how we consume, and create, content online. Rather than browsing, increasingly we use apps, which are convenient and enable us to easily access all of the features built into a smart device – including location, video, and environmental sensors. Apps also can provide a global marketplace to sell content through app stores, increasing the availability of content that may bring more online.

Unfortunately, not every country has access to every app store, and not every app store has access to every app.

So what can be done to help these regions clear these final barriers to fully embrace the Internet and its advantages?

With regards to cost, governments can help by removing any barriers to connectivity, such as high costs for deploying infrastructure, and managing spectrum efficiently to promote innovative uses, particularly in underserved rural areas. Additionally, governments should remove taxes on equipment, devices, and services that act to depress demand. Finally, promoting the local hosting of content can avoid the use of relatively expensive international capacity to access content, lowering the cost of usage accordingly.

Hosting content locally will also lower latency, and thereby increase the usage, and relevance, of the existing content. To help increase the amount of available content, governments should remove unreasonable legal challenges that might inhibit content creation or availability, helping to equalize the user experience around the globe. Governments can also help to promote content creation by developing their own mobile services, hosting them locally, and promoting the capacity building to support these activities.

Greater accessibility to apps will also promote adoption and usage, and in this we encourage more use of web apps. A web app enables developers to create websites with advanced features that can be installed on a mobile device with an icon similar to existing apps. Developers can create one web app for all platforms – consumers can easily move between platforms the way they switch browsers today – and new platforms can enter and compete on more of an even ground.

As we collectively celebrate the amazing numbers already achieved by the mobile Internet in closing the digital divide, we should also work hard, together, to make sure that the remaining challenges are met in order that existing and new users enjoy a mobile Internet that delivers the hope and promise the Internet can bring to everyone.

For a broader discussion of these issues, please check out the Internet Society’s Global Internet Report 2015, which delves deeper into mobile’s impact on the digital divide and a host of other issues related to the mobile Internet.

Categories
Growing the Internet

Starts Monday: Third Africa DNS Forum to Take Place in Nairobi

Technology experts from Africa and beyond will gather in Nairobi between July 6th and 8th, for the third Africa Domain Name System Forum.

This year, the event has brought together experts in the domain name industry, business experts and policy makers, seeking to explore ways to grow Africa’s Domain Name Space. The meeting will build on the success of the inaugural DNS forum in 2013 in Durban and the follow up event in Abuja last year.

Under the theme: The future of Africa’s Domain Name Industry; Opportunities and challenges”, the event is hosted by KENIC, in partnership with the Africa Top Level Domain ( AFTLD), the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers ( ICANN) and the Internet Society (ISOC).

The event will discuss issues regarding securing Africa’s domain name space, growing African registries, increasing reseller domain name sales, success stories in marketing country code Top Level Domains, and emerging trends in DNS security, among other topics.

The opening session is likely to elicit debate and set the tone for the three-day discussion, given the speakers on the panel. The speakers on the panel include:

  • Dr. Paulos Nyirenda- President Africa Top Level Domains Organization
  • Dr. Dawit Bekele- Internet Society, Director of the African Regional Bureau
  • Mr. Pierre Dandjinou- Vice President Stakeholder Engagement ICANN
  • Eng. Francis W. Wangusi- MBS- Director General, Communications Authority of Kenya
  • Mr. Joseph Tiampati Ole Musuni- Principal Secretary, Ministry for Information and Communication of Kenya

Africa’s DNS industry is stymied by several challenges and the forum provides an avenue to foster cross-border collaborations between registries, registrars, registrants, and other stake holders as well as provide a forum for the entire domain name industry and community to interact, share and learn from each other and from similar organizations from within and outside the continent.

Photo: "It's all ones and zeros" © Ivan Plata CC BY-NC 2.0
Categories
Community Projects

Bringing Nepal Back Online: Solar Trip

The day started nice with sunny weather but now it is clouded and it often rains. That’s not good and can trigger more landslides.

An hour later a friend of mine, Kumar, arrives in a tiny car. I am a bit surprised we take that car as the road promises to be very bad at places where landslides were cleared. The equipment is loaded on the back seat of the car and I manage to fit just besides it.
Babu Ram Aryal (right), President of the of the Internet Society Nepal and ICT lawyer, inspects a solar panel in a warehouse in Kathmandu.

We leave Kathmandu direction Sindhupalchok, a district that was severely affected, and again got extra damaged in the May 12 quake.

It is after 2 hours into the journey that we see more and more collapsed houses, but nothing like the scale of destruction I expected. Sitting in this tiny car is not fun on a road like this.

On the way to Bhotsipa, a tiny village where volunteers of the Internet Society plan to deliver a solar panel, they drive through Sipaghat where almost all houses have been destroyed when the April 25 earthquake struck Nepal. 

Sometime later, when we reach the Indrawati River, I see more collapsed houses and at some places the road has been cleared of small landslides. Suddenly we drive into Sipaghat Bazar where almost all houses, many made of regular bricks and concrete are leveled, and what remains is clearly too dangerous to live in. Maybe 15% is habitable. Sipaghat is the first village we see that really looks destroyed by the earthquake.

We drive through the main road that has just a single lane cleared from debris and cross the bridge over the Indrawati River. There, at the other side of the bridge, we become stuck.

It’s surprising that we even got this far with this car.

Somnath Bhattarai and his family install a solar panel and battery on the roof of their temporary shelter in Bhotsipa village. The panel and battery were donated by the Internet Society.

We drive back through the destruction of Sipaghat Bazar and the body of the car makes cracking sounds as it drives through potholes and grinds over bricks, concrete and metal still littering the cleared road.

We continue to village two, higher up North. The road serpentines following steep slopes of the Indrawati River gorge. We see the remains of larger more dangerous landslides.

The day started nice with sunny weather but now it is clouded and it often rains. That is not good and can trigger more landslides.

We move a bit further up the road to a place where there is no danger for landslides and wait for a local politician to help us find the next village where we must install the panel. It hasn’t stopped raining.

We’ll be donating the panel to a village 30 minutes walking up the steep mountain slope. There is no electricity and so far no attempts have been there to reconnect that place.

Kumar tries to drive his car up a dirt road that leads to the village but the tires just can’t get any grip and we leave the car. People of the village take over and carry the solar panel and the very heavy battery. The rain has stopped.

Local men of Talramarang, a tiny village that has been cut off from the power grid since the April 25 earthquake struck Nepal, carry up a solar panel and battery donated by volunteers of the Internet Society Nepal.

About 30 minutes later we reach the spot where the villagers want the panel to be installed. It is a big house and I think it is the house of the village leader, but it is also heavily cracked. The village is more a loose cluster of houses dotted on a gentle slope with rice fields. Most houses are standing, but at closer inspection are seriously damaged.

A partially destroyed house in Talramarang, a tiny village that has been cut off from the power grid since the April 25 earthquake struck Nepal.

Kumar and I install the panel, and it all works.

Locals of Talramarang, a tiny village that has been cut off from the power grid since the April 25 earthquake struck Nepal, install a solar panel and battery donated by volunteers of the Internet Society Nepal.

We return to Kathmandu and start to plan our next journey.

* If you would like to help the Chapter bring Nepal back online you can donate on our website.

Photos: © Tom Van Cakenberghe