South Sudan: Constructing the new nation
Professionally, I help organizations with building communities to make things, usually software. But in many places, and that includes the most developed nations, the right kind of developer and company which might employ her may be missing or at least not present enough. So developing a community entails working with education institutions, which is to say, national and subnational government. And it also entails helping small businesses understand the market that is being created and how become part of the emerging ecosystem that includes that market but also other externalities.
I’m thus always interested in learning how community, big, with diverse populations, each with its own notions of identity, yet (more or less) agreeing to national boundaries and expectations, comes into being. (The game model of community as an economic state is equally interesting, though for different reasons. Still, I’ve been exploring ways in which one might model various commons-based peer set ups as a practical tool.)
South Sudan, born as a nation not even two years ago and proving, by the remarkable spirit of its people, an indomitable courage and pride, is fascinating. The country faces harsh challenges. Yet, as the article that prompts my entry here shows, it seems nevertheless to be progressively making itself as a modern nation.
What tactics are being used? Are they working? And if not, why not? And what other techniques and strategies be used? (The Guardian, btw, has a good series of articles on South Sudan.)
And would it make sense to promote technologies that would link students and education institutions to the Web? If so, I’d suggest P2P tools and SMS innovators like Telerivet. But the issue here would not be advancing a particular sort of technology or learning or awareness–that would be even more arrogant than I’m used to being–but working within the existing and emerging structures.