Inno-Native Approaches to Public Transport Data in African Cities

Posted by Bianca Ryseck on 18-Oct-2017 10:56:43

Minibus taxis collecting passengers in Johannesburg

This blog post is an excerpt from "Digitalising Mobility" - our new e-book. Get your free copy here

Whether they are called taxis, dala dalas, or matatus, informally run transport is the way most of Africa’s public transport users move. These demand-based systems run on semi-fixed routes and frequencies to provide 80-90% of public transport passenger trips in medium-sized cities. In the Cape Town region alone, roughly 16,000 minibus vehicles deliver mobility to citizens daily. Though previously perceived as a stopgap solution, informally run transport is increasingly recognised as a potential enabler of sustainable urban mobility. However, little documentation on these services exists, and where it does, data is incomplete or low quality.

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Tags: Big Data, Johannesburg, Minibus taxi, pretoria, Minibus, South Africa, Tshwane

Now Available: Informally Run Public Transport Data from all Major South African Cities

Posted by WhereIsMyTransport Team on 05-Oct-2017 14:03:00

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Our largest data collection project to date is now complete - the informally run public transport networks of Johannesburg, Tshwane and Ekurhuleni. Home to nearly 13 million people, these sprawling municipalities in South Africa’s Gauteng province represent one of the largest urban regions in Africa, and access to data from this region is now available for our customers and platform users. 

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Tags: South Africa, news

Combining Low and High Tech for Improved Public Transport Experiences

Posted by Bianca Ryseck on 17-Jul-2017 14:27:42

Dhaka-Bangladesh-traffic-public-transport-rickshaw-bus.jpg

In last week’s article, we discussed how the digital divide applies to transport. This article looks at how tech has been used in information collection and dissemination to narrow the information divide.

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Tags: Bangladesh, Digital Divide, Digital Matatus, Kenya, Ma3Route, Nairobi, Dhaka, Technology

Open and Digital: Increasing Data Access in Africa through Mapping

Posted by Bianca Ryseck on 05-Jul-2017 13:14:34

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The shift away from paper maps towards digitalised cartography allows data to be easily updated by anyone in possession of a GPS-device and internet, increasing the map’s accuracy and depth of information. Digital maps enable information to be seen from different perspectives, from as small as the census block to as large as the entire globe. Information on the map can even contain meta-data, storing information such as when a building was built and how much it was sold for. Using tools such as ArcGIS, this data can be immediately analysed to reveal behaviours and spatial patterns of spatio-temporal factors that previously would have been difficult to correlate.

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Tags: Data, OSM, Africa, State of the Map

How We're Helping Build Solutions for Emerging Cities and Skills for a Career in Tech

Posted by Devin de Vries on 03-Jul-2017 10:06:11

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In March, our first company hackathon was won by “FindMyTaxi” - a project which used the WhereIsMyTransport platform to improve minibus taxi efficiency through a service which connects passengers and operators. Two of the members of that team were part of Code for Cape Town (C4CT) - an initiative which introduces high school girls to web development skills and exposes them to opportunities in the IT industry.

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Integrated Efforts for Integrated Public Transport in Gaborone

Posted by Bianca Ryseck on 26-Jun-2017 10:04:35

Minibus-taxi-passengers-waiting.jpeg

Botswana’s high mobile phone penetration rates combined with digitalised information on key city systems like public transport provide a promising foundation for developers to deliver critical solutions to urgent mobility challenges. While urban planning interventions can go a long way to smoothing out public transport services, to increase service satisfaction, commuters need critical information on where, when, and how to get around their city. 

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Tags: Botswana, Gaborone, Hackathon

WhereIsMyTransport wins Global Urban Innovator and Promising Transport Innovation Awards

Posted by WhereIsMyTransport Team on 20-Jun-2017 14:02:00

WhereIsMyTransport is thrilled to have receive two prestigious international awards, from the International Transport Forum (ITF) and NewCities.

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Tags: news

For Mobility in Emerging Cities, the Digital Divide Is a Matter of Information Quality

Posted by Bianca Ryseck on 19-Jun-2017 15:39:40

Kampala-Uganda-Traffic-minibuses-matatus (1).jpg

In a previous article, we discussed a new approach to the digital divide in emerging cities that places greater emphasis on data quality – that is, the utility of the information accessible. This article is a continuation, exploring the ramifications of data quality for mobility in emerging cities.

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Tags: Digital Divide, ICT, Technology

Why Our Team is Marking Youth Day by Learning isiXhosa

Posted by Carla Gustafson on 12-Jun-2017 08:40:48

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Youth Day is an annual public holiday in South Africa, remembering those who lost their lives during the uprising against the Bantu Education Act. As this Act and a government edict in 1974 made Afrikaans a compulsory medium of instruction in schools, children who did not speak this language at home were disadvantaged as they were unable to learn in schools.

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Tags: South Africa, Youth Day

The Digital Divide Is about Access, but Access to What?

Posted by Bianca Ryseck on 08-Jun-2017 12:51:30

Cape-Town-Bus-South-Africa.jpg

Increasingly, smartphones, computers and other internet-connected devices are becoming the go-to source of information. But there are deepening discrepancies between social groups and regions who have access to information stored online. The ‘digital divide’ is used to describe social and regional differences in access to, and use of, information and communications technologies. Access to internet connectivity and ICT is often valued for having the ability to increase social and cultural capital, improve workplace tasks, and access to a wider range of economic resources. Currently, the focus of the digital divide is on the means of access to digital services, whether that be internet speed, data pricing, computer quality, etc. Not enough attention is given to the question of why these means are powerful: namely the relevance of what people can access digitally.

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Tags: Digital Divide, Eritrea, Kenya, Africa, economic sustainability, Social Sustainability, Technology

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