Working 9.4 has gathered in Tirana, Albania, for a Regional Conference, June 22nd – 24th with Endrit Kromidha of Royal Holloway, University of London, as Program Chair. Endrit reports:
“The aim of the 2018 IFIP 9.4 European Regional Conference was to provide an engaging space for researchers and practitioners to share their work and participate, developing capabilities in working in multidisciplinary research projects, getting published in leading international journals, impacting policy and practice. Information technologies are great drivers of change that can create opportunities for new and improved models of sustainable international development. Digital innovation, when adapted to specific needs, could have the ability to solve social challenges, but concerns about amplifying inequality, access to benefits and diverting resources away from more pressing development priorities remain.
The conference provided a forum for a broad range of submissions looking at innovation agility, indigenous innovation in developing countries and digital innovation for sustainable development across the full range of topics of interest to IFIP Working Group 9.4 in the broad areas of technology and sustainable international development.
The keynote speakers were: Professor Robert Davison, IFIP WG 9.4 Chair and Professor of Information Systems at the City University of Hong Kong who in a Publishing in International Journals session opened up the black box of publishing from the perspective of an Editor in Chief of two very different journals: the AIS Basket of 8 “Information Systems Journal” and the niche “Electronic Journal of Information Systems in Developing Countries”. Erton Graceni, Executive Director at Protik Innovation Center in Albania and Irena Malolli, Director of Infrastructure Projects, Ministry of Infrastructure and Energy in Albania shared their views on the local digital innovation developments in Albania, covering progress and challenges in the legal, infrastructure and business fields. Dr. Mirlinda Karçanaj, General Director of the National Agency of Information Society (NAIS) in Albania was also invited.
The conference welcomed 20 participants from 10 different countries to share their research and participate in development workshop in Tirana between 22-24 June 2018. The conference tracks looked at Policy and ICT Infrastructure for Empowerment, Digital Innovations for Development, Education for Development – New Approaches Tools and Models, Equality and Safety Issues with Digital Innovations, and Digital Technologies and International Crisis. Participants had also a chance to have a little taste of Albania while watching the FIFA World Cup matches in Tirana’s main square by the conference venue, or trying traditional food delicacies al-fresco in one of the capital’s best restaurants, welcomed by a traditional polyphonic music performance.”