Experts 2012

Anahi Ayala Iacucci is the Media Innovation Advisor for Internews in Africa; she has consulted on the use of the ICT4D and crisis mapping for the UN OCHA Iraq Inter-Agency Information and Analysis Unit, the NGO Alliance Guinea, Freedom House in Egypt, the World Bank in Zambia and Ushahidi Inc. in China. A Co-Founder of the Standby Task Force, she collaborated with UNOCHA on the LibyaCrisisMap project that used Social Media to monitor Libya and feed info to the humanitarian community; and she is also a member of the International Network of Crisis Mappers. Anahi is the author of the Ushahidi Guide and blogs at Diary of a Crisis Mapper. She is co-author of several publications on PLoS Medicine and ACSM Bulletin on Crisis Mapping and Disaster response, Crowdsourcing applied to Health issues and the role of Social Networks in today’s Media world. Anahi is currently a Crowd-sourcing and Info Specialists for the World Bank and an SMS and Mobile Tech Specialists for the Popular Engagement Policy Lab in Pakistan.


Emrys Schoemaker is Director and co-founder of iMedia Associates, formerly an independent consultant and conflict specialist with extensive experience designing communications and media based initiatives for development and peace building purposes. He has particular interest in how social media and mobile phones are transforming people lives and the implications for changing citizen-state relations and political processes. He spent two years in Pakistan in 2004-2006 as a media advisor for DFID, the UN and civil society organizations. He designed, managed and advised on media and communication initiatives in the areas of governance, conflict and health, particularly HIV and AIDs. He has recently conducted consultancies in Pakistan and Afghanistan exploring strategies for counter extremism. Emrys’ blog on media and communication is Com­mu­ni­care.

Mr. Javid Hamdard is a recognized figure among the Afghan IT community with over 10 years of experience. Mr. Hamdard has worked with several national and international organizations as a senior technical advisor including IT adviser to the Office of the President, IT Manager with the Swedish Committee for Afghanistan, IT Adviser with the UNDP, IT Consultant with Adam Smith Institute, Country Coordinator and Internet advocate with Internews-Europe and more. Mr. Hamdard has advised, planned and implemented numerous cross platform IT projects and assignments. He has also written several IT policies for the organizations he has worked with including the IT policy for the Office of the president and the Ministry of Finance. He has actively campaigned for the legalization of Internet Telephony (VoIP) and the reduction of import and sales taxes on ICT equipment and businesses in Afghanistan. Mr. Hamdard is the co-author of the first-ever national report on the state of IT and telecommunications in Afghanistan; He is a member and co-founder of the National ISP Association of Afghanistan (NISPAA) and a member of Afghan Computer Science Association. He is currently working as an ICT Consultant with Internews Network.


Jacobo Quintanilla is Director of Humanitarian Information Projects at Internews and Board Member of the infoasaid project, an Internews/BBC Media Action joint initiative that aims at improving how aid agencies communicate with disaster affected communities. Jacobo worked previously in Haiti with Internews as Humanitarian Coordinator after the January 2010 earthquake. He was also the first coordinator for the Communicating with Disaster Affected Communities (CDAC) Network in its first-ever emergency response deployment. Jacobo joined Internews in Sri Lanka in 2007 where he led the Lifeline Humanitarian Information Service for Internally Displaced People (IDPs). Jacobo has worked as a journalist and for Amnesty International in Spain, and for ActionAid in Sri Lanka as Head of Media and Communications after the 2004 tsunami. As a journalist in Spain, he worked for radio, news agencies and in the communications department of Amnesty International and ActionAid. He tweets from @jqg.

Schuyler Erle has been a Free Software developer and evangelist for over fifteen years. He was a co-author of ‘Mapping Hacks’ and ‘Google Maps Hacks’. Schuyler was also a co-founder of the OpenLayers and TileCache projects, and is a charter member of the OSGeo Foundation. Schuyler currently resides in San Francisco, where he designs and builds new and exotic geospatial technology.


Jes Kaliebe Petersen is a entrepreneur of half-Danish, half-German descent. At 20, he moved to New Delhi to start a mobile marketing company. After having gained vast experience in the mobile sector in emerging markets, and a stint in Copenhagen doing business development in the corporate world, he is now in Kabul, Afghanistan, where he was part of founding Paywast, the first Afghan social network, and the largest mobile social network service of Central Asia and the Middle East.

Bobby Soriano has fifteen solid years of systems and network administration experience, developing NGO-tools and implementing projects, He has also spent five years as an information and communications technology trainer. He has specialist knowledge in setting up SMS-based communications strategies for media and NGOs and the use of mobile technologies for advocacy and improving communication and information flows.


Arjun Venkatraman is a social entrepreneur with a background in architecting bleeding edge tactical IT solutions into enterprise IT projects. He has worked with a diverse range of technologies and users, including the telecom sector in the United Kingdom and virtualization for financial services customers on Wall Street. Having grown up in a family of social activists he has been interested in finding sustainable methods of information exchange, empowerment and participatory democracy. Of particular interest to him is the challenge of connecting communities with language and literacy barriers to the information superhighway. He has been associated with CGNet Swara since 2010 as a volunteer and technical adviser.

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