I’ve worked at the intersection of community development, participatory media, rights-based approaches and new information and communication technologies (ICTs) for almost 20 years, starting in El Salvador where I spent the 1990s.
This has included being involved on the ‘field’ side in translation, communications, programs, grants, administration, management, disaster response, youth media, and ICT4D. On the US side, I’ve worked on donor development, program development, youth engagement, development education, research, strategy and innovation. I’m an anthropologist by degree and a participant observer by nature.
Areas of interest and focus:
- openness, transparency and accountability, participatory governance, “feedback loops”
- youth- and community-led development processes
- ethics and privacy in technology for aid and development
- stereotyping in development communications and the media, post-colonial perceptions and behaviors in aid and development
- new technologies in M&E
- child and youth migration and ICTs
- gender and ICTs
- mobile technologies and youth workforce development, youth employment, youth entrepreneurship
- communication for development (C4D)
- disruption and change in the aid and development industry
I work with various organizations both individually and through Kurante, a small firm I started with Wayan Vota. I also run Technology Salons in New York City. I currently advise/support Plan International USA on transparency/accountability and youth participatory governance; The Rockefeller Foundation’s Evaluation Office on ICTs and M&E; American Red Cross on new tech and urban resilience; and a foundation I’m not allowed to mention on connecting girls with information and each other via mobile.
I am a trusted friend to Project Restart and TechChange and on the board of SIMLab (creators of FrontlineSMS) and the International Center for Advocates against Discrimination. I’m a co-founder of Regarding Humanity, which advocates for respectful, effective, collaborative, and engaging storytelling in aid and development.
Some publications I’ve worked on include an overview of how ICTs can be used in monitoring and evaluation for The Rockefeller Foundation’s Evaluation Office, a landscape review of Mobiles and Youth Workforce Development for the mEducation Alliance, a paper for UNICEF on integrating ICTs into communication for development work with adolescent girls, and an overview of the role of ICTs in child and youth migration. More detail on LinkedIn.
Contact me at lindaraftree [at] gmail [dot] com or @meowtree. Please be patient if I don’t respond immediately.