Geo4All Newsletter & First “GeoForAll” lab of the month – Open Source Geospatial Lab , Kathmandu University, Nepal

We are very happy to inform that the first Geo4All NewsletterNewsletter vol. 1 no. 1 ) is now ready and  our sincere thanks to Dr. Nikos Lambrinos (Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece) for taking initiative to start newsletter for GeoforAll and being the chief editor and his excellent team for making this newsletter possible.

 Thank you to Antoni, Ela, Emma, Rizwan, Pavel, Alexey and Nikos for their help for the newsletter. As we have been growing rapidly (with over 100 Labs), it is timely that we have our newsletter to share the many developments, events, activities etc from all members.

 It is also our great pleasure to use this opportunity to highlight the contributions of one lab in each newsletter issue to help all of us learn more about our members, share ideas and build collaborations for the future.

It is my great pleasure, to introduce our colleagues at the Open Source Geospatial Lab , Kathmandu University [1], [2], Nepal as our first “GeoForAll” lab of the month. We are especially grateful for the work and relief efforts done (and still doing) after the terrible earthquakes by our colleagues in Kathmandu University lead by Dr Shashish Maharjan in these challenging circumstances and may God help them to help others in need. Their whole team along with many students and volunteers were key in helping the recovery efforts.

In spite of all the economic & technological developments, it is a sad fact that thousands of schools globally (esp. in developing countries) even today do not have access to even a single computer. Many of these poor schools do not even have a proper library.  I am confident if we keep focus, we can achieve the target to enable digital education opportunities (tablets or low cost hardware based) in many of the poorest schools globally in just 10 years time and having this partnership with universities, governments, Industry, SMEs and NGOs is key for this. So even if till now many of these schools did not have access to any proper library or other learning resources, they will now have access to the best digital education resources available globally from wikipedia to MOOCs.

Thanks to the unique convergence of some key developments (hardware costs will keep decreasing, internet access will keep increasing even in developing and poor countries, availability of free and open source software, open education resources etc.), we are in the first time in history truly have a real opportunity for making quality education opportunities accessible for all. I have seen this already happening even in some poor government schools in rural India and also many examples in our GeoForAll community from gvSIG Batovi in Uruguay [3] to GIS at Schools [4] etc, has proved that it is possible if we have the will power and determination.

Access to quality education and opportunities is key for getting rid of extreme poverty and enable broadly shared prosperity for all.

Education + Empowerment = Geo4All

So GeoForAll aims to welcome ideas from the wider community on how we can work together for building global synergies and collaborations for enabling this even for the poorest and remotest schools worldwide to enable quality education opportunities for all.

We look forward to working and building collaborations with all interested on this Geo4All education mission.

Best wishes,

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