Landscape analysis

Innovation initiatives started back in 2012 with the impulse of the international community, which encouraged the tech companies and civil society organisations to work together and make applications that could bring changes in the society, fostering the role of technology in bringing social change. Based on those initiatives, the Innovation Hub, which actually consists of technology experts, came together and started bi-weekly and monthly meetings about technology development and its applicability in society. One specific result is the establishment of a software that, against a fixed fee, allows customers to download on their mobile phones the exercises to prepare for the university admission exam. From 2013 onwards another initiative supported by Internews consisted in conducting several workshops and labs for civil society, media activists and technologists in order to address various social challenges with the help of technology in Kabul, Nangarhar and Herat. The challenges, although not necessarily related to technology, included women related social barriers, blood donation, election monitoring and so on. Technology was used to tackle these challenges. Many working groups started to work on different applications like Easy Haj. Some of these ideas were developed but it is questionable that they have been fully implemented.

The all-female robotic team from Herat is another initiative which has started and hopes to continue working. There are women coders in Herat, who run the Code Weekend, Tech Women and Tech TV, Deewa which are all initiatives working on new technologies. It is worth mentioning that at this stage, all initiatives in this regard are based in the cities.