Author: Open Institute

Through the lens of a woman film-maker at OI

I am told, I am the first woman to get inside a gold mine in Vihiga county, Kenya. In many parts of the world, women are not allowed to go anywhere near a mine because it’s believed that mining sites are men’s territories, so women are responsible for removing gold from the soil after the actual mining process. Women are kept away from the mine shafts; dark, dusty, claustrophobia-inducing holes that usually go almost a Kilometre into the earth. “It is not safe for a woman to go down there. It is just not done.”

Data protection and open government – are these compatible tenets in the Kenyan context?

Open government is an inclusive and participatory approach to governance that allows citizens to be involved in the formulation and eventual implementation of public policies, and has been recognized as a catalyst for democracy and inclusivity in sustainable growth. Government is open when it follows the principles of transparency, accountability and participation; key initiatives include open data, public participation, open contracting, open parliament, among others.

Phone screen showing WhatsApp app

WhatsApp’s new Terms & Conditions: What they mean to us

Eight years after it gained popularity in Kenya, WhatsApp is now not only owned by Facebook but has more features added to it making it more appealing for masses and increasing its penetration in most countries worldwide. With the new ownership came new terms and conditions in 2012 which most users agreed to without reading. A new set of terms and conditions were unveiled by the company early this year which caused quite a stir online. Data protection experts, governments and civil societies went up in arms with the new terms and the extent in which individual and business data is collected from the platform.
At the Open Institute, we convened an informal lunch time chat to discuss the new terms and conditions and to try and explain what the impact of them would be to the everyday citizen.

My Experience as a Remote Worker

In this blog, Mukanda shares her personal experience with working from home. From time to time, we feature posts by different team members and encourage