Social Innovation and Technology

Humanitarian Organizations: Collaboration and Coordination

College of Information Science and Technology, Penn State

This study focused on international humanitarian coordination bodies, such as UNOCHA and NetHope, which facilitate collaborative work between humanitarian organizations. The primary research focus was to understand how collaborative mechanisms (especially those utilizing information and communication technologies) were affected by the features of organizational design. In addition, the study utilized a social network approach to conceptualizing the various network links (funding, collaboration and advice networks) and their effects on collaborative ends.

  • Bajpai,K., Maldonado, E., Ngamassi, L.M., Tapia, A., Maitland, C., "NGO Collaborations: Sharing and Pooling projects", iConference 2011, Seattle, Washington, USA
  • Ngamassi, L.M., Maitland, C., Zhao, K., Tapia, A., Bajpai,K., "Crossing Borders, Organizations, Levels and Technologies: IS Collaboration in Humanitarian Relief", AMCIS 2010, Americas Conference on Information Systems, Lima, Peru
  • Ngamassi, L., Maitland, C., Tapia, A., Zhao, K., and Bajpai, K., “Assessing Humanitarian InterOrganizational Network Effectiveness: The Case of the UNOCHA Global Symposium”. ISCRAM2010, 7th International Conference on Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management, Seattle Washington USA

Examining Social Movements through Online Media: The case of Thai protests on Twitter

College of Information Science and Technology, Penn State

This study focused on Twitter data relating to the Thai Protests of 2010, to probe the dynamics of collective action in virtual environments. Conducted content analysis of over 2000 tweets and generated an analysis framework which takes into consideration social movements constructs such as ‘protest waves’, and extends them to the spaces of new media. The major contribution of this project is the conceptualization of a more nuanced way of looking at Twitter data, and moving beyond the hype of the so-called ‘Twitter Revolutions’, towards a theoretically informed study of movements via online data.

  • Bajpai, K. and Jaiswal, A., “A Framework for Analyzing Collective Action Events on Twitter”, ISCRAM2011, 8th International Conference on Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management, Lisbon, Portugal
  • Tapia, A., Bajpai, K., Jansen, B., Yen, J., Giles, L., “Seeking the Trustworthy Tweet: Can Microblogged Data Fit the Information Needs of Disaster Response and Humanitarian Relief Organizations”, ISCRAM2011, 8th International Conference on Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management, Lisbon, Portugal

A study in tracking the shift from Savings to Remittance on the Mobile backbone

Sampark, Bangalore, in association with UC Irvine

A study which examines Eko, India, a financial technology firm which provides mobile money solutions. The focus of the study is twofold (i) documenting the strategic shift from savings to remittance services (ii) Outlining the regulatory and market ecologies in which banking correspondents operate. We examine this model from the viewpoint of the various stakeholders involved, customers, mobile money agents, regulators, banks and the service provider themselves.

Project page:

Narratives and Development

With Khanjan Mehta and Dr. Janelle Larson, Humanitarian Engineering and Social Entrepreneurship (HESE), Penn State
Designed, conducted and analyzed narrative study of slum, street and ghetto youth of Nairobi, Kenya. In total, I conducted 233 interviews with the goal of demonstrating an alternative approach to designing development initiatives for marginalized and transient urban populations. In particular, our approach utilized an alternative survey methodology, which places an emphasis on the story-telling of urban youth.

  • Bajpai, K., Larson, J. B., & Mehta, K. (2013, December). “Like a hustler: Aligning intervention design with informal labor practices”. In Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development: Full Papers-Volume 1 (pp. 177-184). ACM.

Community Radio, Spectrum Allocation and Convergence

Maraa, Bangalore in association with the Ford Foundation

A policy project which focuses on two focus points relating to community media in the context of the broader Indian telecommunication policy. The focus points are as follows: (i) Prognosis of the growth of the sector (ii) Convergence opportunities which look at the opportunities for increasing the reach of Community Radio using mobile telephony and mobile internet. This project spans engagement and fieldwork with five community radio stations spread across five states in central India.

Evaluating a low-cost projection unit to display mobile content

Maraa, Bangalore, and University of Surrey

Conducted a one month pilot of a low-cost video projection prototype, a TVCam device, which displays mobile content on TV screens. The pilot was run in a community center run by a Bangalore based sexual minorities organization. The pilot focuses on perceptions on the device, usability feedback, and unexpected usages. This pilot was conducted in parallel with a similar pilot in South Africa.

  • Robinson, Simon, et al. "Com-me: community media toolkit." Digital Futures (2012).