AfDB goes mobile for African youth research

The African Development Bank (AfDB) has announced a strategic partnership with Mobile Accord to launch mobile-based surveys throughout Africa.

Mthuli Ncube, Chief Economist of AfDB, says the partnership is in line with AfDB’s aims to use technology better to support the Bank’s many initiatives around the continent, including their “Youth Employment” and “Transforming Africa” projects.

Ncube said: “Through this partnership with Mobile Accord, we are able to feel the real pulse of the youth and the development impact of AfDB because we can gather more accurate information in real time.”

Mobile Accord’s service, GeoPoll, the polling platform that uses text messaging to collect substantial data from mobile subscribers, is the engine of this AfDB-Mobile Accord partnership.

A GeoPoll survey was recently used to ask Tunisian youth for their views on employment, entrepreneurship, and on the country’s progress since the Arab Spring.  Among the most interesting results were that 62% of Tunisian youth would like to be entrepreneurs.

Ncube said the AfDB would continue using GeoPoll for research around Africa.

“GeoPoll is changing the way information is collected; reducing the time it takes to gather information from months to a single day - and at a fraction of the traditional cost,” said Mobile Accord’s Founder and Chairman, James Eberhard, who pioneered GeoPoll, “We are excited to be collaborating with the AfDB. Through this partnership, GeoPoll will enable the voices of Africa to be shared with the world.”

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