About INgene blog : First ever Indian Youth trend Insights blog

About INgene : First ever Indian Youth trend Insights blog:
This blog explores the detailed characteristics of Young-India and explains the finer & crucial differences they have with their global peers. The blog also establishes the theory of “adopted differentiation” (Copyright Kaustav SG,2007) and how the Indian & Inglodian youth are using this as a tool to differentiate themselves from the “aam aadmi” (mass population of India) to establish their new found identity.

The term youth refers to persons who are no longer children and not yet adults. Used colloquially, however the term generally refers to a broader, more ambiguous field of reference- from the physically adolescent to those in their late twenties.
Though superficially the youth all over the world exhibits similar [degree of] attitude, [traits of] interests & [deliverance of] opinion but a detailed observation reveals the finer differential characteristics which are crucial and often ignored while targeting this group as a valued consumer base. India is one of the youngest countries in the world with 60% of its population less then 24 years of age and is charted as the most prospective destination for the retail investment in the A. T. Kearney’s Global Retail Opportunity Report, 2007. With the first ever non-socialistic generation’s thriving aspiration & new found money power combined with steadily growing GDP, bubbling IT industry and increasing list of confident young entrepreneurs, the scenario appears very lucrative for the global and local retailers to target the “Youngisthan” (young-India). But, the secret remains in the understanding of the finer AIOs of this generation. The Indian youth segment roughly estimates close to 250million (between the ages of fifteen and twenty-five) and can be broadly divided (socio-psychologically) into three categories: the Bharatiyas, the Indians & the Inglodians (copyright Kaustav SG 2008). The Bharatiyas estimating 67% of the young population lives in the rural (R1, R2 to R4 SEC) areas with least influence of globalization, high traditional values. They are least economically privileged, most family oriented Bollywood influenced generation. The Indians constitute 31.5% (A, B,C, D & E SEC) and have moderate global influence. They are well aware of the global trends but rooted to the Indian family values, customs and ethos. The Inglodians are basically the creamy layers (A1,A SEC) and marginal (1.5% or roughly three million) in number though they are strongly growing (70% growth rate). Inglodians are affluent and consume most of the trendy & luxury items. They are internet savvy & the believers of global-village (a place where there is no difference between east & west, developing & developed countries etc.), highly influenced by the western music, food, fashion & culture yet Indian at heart.

Friday, June 1, 2012

A classroom on the phone : an oppertunity ahead

Globalisation, as defined by the rich, is a very nice thing, the former U.S. President Jimmy Carter once reflected. “You're talking about the internet, you're talking about cell phones, you're talking about computers,” said Carter. “This doesn't affect two-thirds of the people in the world.” That was in 2001; a lot has changed. In Kenya, mobile phones have become an integral part of cash transfer schemes, enabling poor people in urban areas to buy food. In remote rural areas of Peru, computers provided by the Euro-Solar programme are fuelling an appetite for learning among children. And the senior U.S. Political Adviser Alec Ross — acknowledging the galvanising influence of social media on the Arab spring — has described the internet as “the Che Guevara of the 21st century.”
If the global spread of technology can do all this, what else might it achieve? Quite a lot, according to the authors of a report prepared by the GSMA mobile industry body and published to coincide with last week's eLearning Africa conference in Cotonou, Benin. 

India in the study
Shaping the future — realising the potential of informal learning through mobile, explores mobile technology's potential to improve access to education for young people in developing countries. The study looks at Ghana, Morocco, Uganda and Maharashtra, in India, identifying young people's aspirations and priorities, exploring the education and employment challenges they face, and scrutinising their mobile phone use.
The endgame is to establish how the mobile industry and international development community can pool their expertise to create m-learning services that improve teaching and learning, and therefore promote long-term development. 

“It's a big step in the right direction in terms of putting the possibilities in front of the GSMA's members and raising awareness of the commercial and business opportunities education represents in the developing world,” says John Traxler, professor of m-learning at the University of Wolverhampton in the U.K. “Clearly it's a small sample, covering only four countries, so it's indicative rather than representative. But if the networks get the message, it's a valuable piece of work. Networks don't need to hear it's virtuous, they need to hear it's profitable — just enough to encourage them to get out there and do something.” Mobile phones are increasingly ubiquitous in poor countries, which now account for four in every five connections worldwide. As Elsie Kanza, of the World Economic Forum, recently said: “Regardless of social class, almost everyone [in Africa] has a mobile phone, or two or three. Even in remote villages, mobile phones have replaced the bicycle or radio as prized assets.” An obvious caveat is that voice-calls far outstrip data use in poor countries, which remain an emerging market for smartphones and other data-enabled devices. One reason is cost. A quarter of the young people surveyed — and almost half of those from Ghana — said a shortage of money was the biggest obstacle to accessing educational resources. Even so, the rapid spread of mobile technology offers clear possibilities for learning. Of the young people participating in the study who had accessed the internet, half had done so on a mobile device. 

One female student from rural India told the GSMA researchers: “In class, I sometimes record the lectures on my phone so I can listen to them later in case I forget or don't understand. I can use the calculator to help me with my maths. My favourite subjects are maths, science, history and economics. If you could get these on your mobile it would be good.” Enthusiasm for learning was a common thread in the feedback. Only family and health were felt to be of greater importance by the study's participants, 30 per cent of whom said having a good career ranked higher among their priorities than marriage or home ownership.
Despite this aspirational outlook, however, only a quarter said the classroom was their principal source of information and education. Friends and family were identified as more important by 41 per cent, while 43 per cent gleaned most of their knowledge from TV programmes. 

So can m-learning help? Yes, say the report's authors, who suggest that, by using the study's findings to tap into common interests among young mobile users, the reach and impact of educational material can be increased. Many of those surveyed used their devices to access music and sports content (49 per cent and 24 per cent respectively across the four areas studied); by bundling learning material with, say, football updates, the GSMA researchers believe technology can make a significant difference.
Others, however, are sceptical. Some experts say there is little demonstrable evidence of m-learning's impact, suggesting it threatens to undermine traditional teaching methods and — by leaving those without access to devices at a disadvantage — reinforce inequality. 

Traxler believes such arguments are misguided. “You don't have to pay for mobile technology, and it reaches the people you want to reach,” he argues. “Computers, books, television sets and college buildings may be infinitely more respected, but people already have mobile phones — they buy them, pay for them, and carry them. So let's look at how the technology is representative of our society, and how we can use it, rather than worrying about the niceties of education.” The report preaches a message Traxler has long championed, one he hopes will now trickle down not only to mobile networks and their commercial departments, but also to governments. “That's where the action needs to happen,” he says. “We've had 10 years of relatively small-scale, short-term projects, and by their very nature I'm not sure how much they would really have told us, or how rigorous they were. 

“The case that needs to be made is about sustainability, scale, return on investment and impacting on government policies. If the GSMA can do a better job than the rest of us have done in the past 10 years, then good luck to them — and I think they probably will.” — © Guardian Newspapers Limited, 2012

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