Speakers

Tilak Bhandari

Mr. Tilak Bhandari is currently the Senior Project Officer for the UNDP-funded Aid Management and Coordination Project under the Ministry of Finance. He previously worked for over 15 years in the Foreign Aid Coordination Division in the Ministry of Finance, where he coordinated various donor portfolios as well as sector ministries. Since 2011, he has been engaged in strengthening Nepal’s Aid Management Platform (AMP). He is also involved in drafting the Government of Nepal’s new Foreign Aid Policy in addition to producing the annual Development Coordination Report based off of information found in AMP.

Michael Bauer

Michael lives in Vienna and works as a Data Wrangler with Open Knowledge mostly around the School of Data. After a detour in biomedical research, where he learned to love datawrangling, he spent some time doing advocacy for his passion: freedom in the digital age. He joined Open Knowledge to satisfy his curiosity. He will gladly jump on any topic that you point him to.

Bibhusan Bista

Bibhusan Bista is CEO of YoungInnovations. He has had local, regional and international experience in the areas of software development, information and communication technologies for development, research and innovation for over eight years. Before joining the core team to found YoungInnovations, he was a software engineer at Yomari Inc, before which he was at Bellanet and worked in Technical Innovation. He is a part time lecturer at Kathmandu College of Management (KCM) since 2005. He has made numerous presentations in the areas of Telecenter, ICT4D, IT Entrepreneurship, ICT research, etc at conferences and seminars around the globe.

Dustin Homer

Dustin leads business development and partnership-building efforts at Development Gateway, an NGO whose mission is to empower international development professionals, governments, and citizens with the knowledge they need to improve lives. His background is in monitoring and evaluation. In Nepal, Dustin works with the Ministry of Finance on its Aid Management Platform. Prior to Development Gateway, he worked on impact evaluations and co-founded a community development NGO in Haiti.

Johannes Kiess

Johannes Kiess is an Operations Officer at the World Bank Institute Innovation Labs. He is the team leader for the Open Aid Partnership, which brings together development partners to improve aid transparency and effectiveness and engage citizens and other stakeholders in evidence-based conversations on development. Prior to this position he worked as an economist at the World Bank and as a consultant to the Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development doing research and advising on innovative finance for development.  Johannes holds a doctorate in economics and a master in finance from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland.

Pernilla Näsfors

Pernilla Näsfors is a Development Data Specialist at the World Bank Innovation Labs and working on Open Aid Partnership engagements in Nepal. Pernilla also works for the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida) with Sweden’s engagements in the International Aid Transparency Initiative (IATI) Secretariat. Before joining the World Bank in Washington D.C. in 2013, Pernilla was the Transparency and Social Media Manager at Sida and product manager of Openaid.se. Pernilla studied Information Technology Engineering at Uppsala University and have a Masters in Speech and Language Processing from University of Edinburgh. She did her Masters’ project at University of Nairobi in 2006 where she developed the pilot for what later came to be the National Farmers Information Service www.nafis.go.ke using open-source Kiswahili text-to-speech.

Meg McDermott

Meg McDermott is a consultant at the World Bank Institute Social Accountability Practice, where she develops and coordinates capacity building programs for civil society organizations working on social accountability in South Asia, West Africa, and East Asia. Before joining the World Bank Meg worked in the NGO sector. She was a project assistant for the Global Access to Information Initiative at the Carter Center, which supported multi-stakeholder coalitions to advance the right to information at the country and regional level. She holds a Masters in international relations from the University of St Andrews, Scotland and graduated summa cum laude from Emory University with a BA in political science.

Owen Scott

Owen Scott is Project Manager for AidData/Development Gateway.  Owen brings four years of field experience in Sub-Saharan Africa as an Associate with Development Gateway and as a Geocoding Project Manager on AidData. Most recently, from 2009-2012, Owen worked on planning and results tracking in Malawi, Swaziland, and Lesotho with Engineers Without Borders Canada. Owen has a BS in Civil Engineering from the University of New Brunswick and a graduate certificate in GIS from Penn State.

Anjesh Tuladhar

Anjesh Tuladhar is Chief Operations Officer at YoungInnovations.He leads the data team at YoungInnovations and had conducted couple of data literary trainings to the journalists and CSOs. Previously he worked as a Systems Analyst at ICIMOD and built various technology solutions that helped ICIMOD in internal coordination and management. He is found tinkering with various tools and technologies in his spare time.

Roshan Darshan Bajracharya

Roshan Darshan Bajracharya is a senior economist at World Bank Nepal since 2000. Prior to joining the Bank, Roshan worked for the government of Nepal, National Planning Commission (NPC). During this time, he was responsible for the preparation of a three-year rolling budget, annual midterm reviews of the budget, preparation of annual development budgets, and policy matters related to tax and revenue. He also was part of the NPC Public Expenditure Review Group as well as the Economic Policy Reform Task Force. Roshan has worked as a consultant as part of the government of Ghana’s Economic Reform Program. Roshan holds a master’s degree in public administration from the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, where he has served as a lecturer.

Lindsey Marchessault

Lindsey Marchessault is a Canadian lawyer and a consultant with the World Bank Institute. She has private sector experience working with clients in the extractive industries and worked for two years at the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) at the World Bank in Washington, DC. Lindsey advises on on legal, policy, and technical options for increasing disclosure of information and participation of stakeholders in public contracting (‘open contracting’), including public procurement of goods, works and services, extractive industries, and the land sector. She has been heavily involved with the launch of the Open Contracting Partnership and the development of the Open Contracting Global Principles and Data Standard. She has also authored multiple publications aimed at introducing new audiences to Open Contracting.

Sam Morris Aruna

Sam Morris Aruna, a Sierra Leonean and currently with the Ministry of Finance and Economic as Senior Assistant Secretary/Sector Officer (Roads/Infrastructure) in the Multilateral Project Division (MPD). Sam’s primary responsibilities include the coordination and analysis of aid inflows, monitoring and reporting on the implementation status of multilateral donor funded programs and projects. Prior to this, Sam served as Assistant Secretary/World Bank Focal Person in the then Ministry of Finance. He joined the Ministry of Finance in 2001 as an Assistant Secretary. Sam holds an M .A. degree in Economics Policy Management from the University of Ghana; an M. Sc in Development Studies from Njala University (Sierra Leone); and a B.Sc in Economic and Social Studies from the University of Sierra Leone.

Kaushal Jhalla

Kaushal Jhalla is a third generation Kenyan, currently living and working in the Washington, DC as a technologist at the World Bank’s Open Governance practice with a focus on Africa. His most current work extends to leverage technology and communities built around Transparency, Accountability and Access to Information. Kaushal continues to find elegance in indigenous reproducible solutions that solve everyday problems in Africa.

With Support From:

Craig Hammer

He leads the World Bank Institute’s Global Media Development program, a partnership-drin initiative which focuses on information and media as drivers of good governance. A licensed attorney, his work at the World Bank has included strengthening laws, policies, and regulations to enhance the enabling environment for media, as well as collaborative approaches with media practitioners (journalists, editors, media owners/managers, students, developers, and more) to strengthen the role of media as a key driver of the global knowledge economy, and as a tech-enabled, institution of transparency and accountability.

Amadou Mahtar Ba

Amadou Mahtar Ba is the Chief Executive of the African Media Initiative (AMI), an unprecedented pan-African effort aimed at providing the continent’s media owners and practitioners with the tools they need to play an effective role in their societies. AMI aims to strengthen the media sector in Africa to ensure the accountability of governments and other institutions and to promote social development and economic growth.  Mr. Ba is also a Co-founder and Chairman of AllAfrica Global Media, Inc – owner and operator of http://allafrica.com – an international multi-media content service provider, systems technology developer and the largest distributor of African news and information worldwide. Prior to starting AllAfrica, Mr. Ba served from 1996 to 2000 as Director of Communications and Marketing for BICIS Bank, a subsidiary of the French banking group BNP Paribas. From 1993 to 1996, Mr. Ba helped lead the successful restructuring and privatization of the Pan-African News Agency.

Justin Arenstein

He is an award-winning investigative journalist and digital strategist currently helping Google and the African Media Initiative strengthen Africa’s watchdog media by working with newsrooms to implement better forensic research and evidence-based reportage. This includes helping media adopt digital tools and data journalism strategies. Justin manages the $1m African News Innovation Challenge, is rolling out HacksHackers chapters across Africa, and supports newsroom-based experiments with citizen reporting, mobile news, and augmented reality platforms. Justin is a former Press Councillor in South Africa, and continues to serve on several media industry bodies and think tanks. His investigative reportage has helped put a senator, two legislature speakers and a provincial cabinet minister behind bars, and contributed to the ouster of two provincial premiers and several other cabinet ministers and state officials on charges ranging from child rape to corruption.

Our Mission

To boost analytical, evidence-based public discussion by giving citizens, journalists and civil society access to the data, digital tools, and computational skills necessary for transforming our societies into digital democracies.