In this talk, Chintan Vaishnav will present his explorations that are motivated by the following overarching question: "How can we avoid the gross inequality, which we have come to endure in the material world, in the information world?" His work on Information Architecture for Development (IA4D) raises three fundamental questions about resource-constrained environments:
(1) How can we generate information about such environments in new ways?
(2) How can we share the information generated in new ways? And
(3) How can we make decisions based on these new forms of information?
He will present examples from his attempts to build socio-technical solutions that explore these three dimensions of IA4D in various domains such as agriculture, water, and urban governance; and discuss open questions at the intersection of technology, development, and policy that this work currently confronts.
Bio-sketch of the speaker:
Chintan Vaishnav is a socio-technologist, an engineer trained to understand and build large-scale systems with both human as well as technological complexities. He is motivated to build socio-technical solutions that overcome constraints fundamental to improving human conditions in resource-poor environments. He pursues this objective at the intersection of Information Technology and Systems, Development, and Public Policy. He is a Senior Lecturer in MIT’s Sloan School of Management, and serve as the Academic Director of Tata Center for Technology + Design. He is also a Visiting Faculty at the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. Chintan holds a Bachelors and Masters degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering; a Masters in Technology and Policy; and a PhD in Technology, Management, and Policy (or Engineering Systems) from MIT. He also holds a graduate degree in Indian Classical Music.