27 October 2009

The one-billion dollar question

This morning, while cycling up a hill from bringing the children to school, a whole choir of children stood at a distance, screaming How are you? on the top of their voices. While jelling back I am fine! it struck me that they aired the one-billion dollar question.

Yesterday my partner Janneke van Dijk published a study on Barriers to the care of HIV-infected children in rural Zambia. A friend shared a diagnosis cancer after which we talked. And we filed a conference paper on Rural mesh network implementation in the village of Macha showing lots of real world constraints for implementing Information and Communications Technologies in an emerging region.


Well, it seems we have a desire to partner in situations for those saying 'I am not fine!' when they are asked that same one-billion dollar question. And that is worthwhile in itself: serving those who suffer. And sufferers abound, both in the South and in the North. We are all poor - in one way or the other - and fall short of being good.

Today I am planning to speak in Macha to a group of people about looking at realities, away from well worn paths, other paradigms and hypotheses. I will discuss the following:
  • Competition versus Collective and Individual Purposes.
  • 'Tit-for-tat' versus Satisfying Needs.
  • Shortage versus Abundance.
  • Ownership versus Stewardship.
  • Hoarding versus Sharing.
  • Selfishness versus Collectiveness.
  • Losers versus Conquerers.
  • Loss and Waste versus Sustainability.
  • Truth being Adagium versus Truth being Relationship.
  • Authority derived from Power versus Power derived from Authority.
Challenging subjects to talk about in rural Africa. Seemly it is all about the former while striving for the latter.

I am fine!