Two years ago, I set up this blog to report on our efforts to gather reliable and timely data on citizens’ lives in Dar es Salaam through mobile phones. By now, our project (now called Listening to Dar) has developed into something much more than what we could have imaged when we started this process. Since the World Bank started funding the data gathering, we published 16 data reports on Public Services in Dar es Salaam and our findings generate considerable media interest in Tanzania. Our data have also been used in this year’s World Bank Global Montoring Report (see www.listeningtodar.org).
At the same time, very little has happened on this blog during the previous months. Not because we have not been doing exciting things (we have), but because by now, we reached a certain level of routine and moved beyond the phase of experimentation, of trial-and-error. At this point, we invest most of our efforts in gathering relevant data on different aspects of people’s living conditions, publishing thought-provoking and accessible reports, and making sure they enter and inform public discourse. Much of this we achieve through the official project’s website, our twitter account, and our bi-weekly press conferences held in Dar es Salaam.
For these reasons, I will stop posting here for now. However, I will keep this blog online as an archive of our mistakes and experiences, and most of all as a potential learning resource for those who plan to set up a similar infrastructure elsewhere.