Monthly Archives: July 2009

how the bumblebee flies

As I continue my survey of internet cafes here in Accra, one question keeps recurring. How can these small businesses survive, let along turn a profit? 15 so far in Kokomlemle and 11 in Adabraka, the two areas of Accra I am focusing on, and barely one is making its owner a living. Yet they […]

ICT4D

As anyone who reads the Times knows by now, there is an international investigation going on about e-waste. The Times published a story exposing the illegal transporting of defunct computers and other electronics to Brazil and Ghana – among other things, a Ministry of Defence computer wound up in a scrapyard in Accra that has […]

Obamamania

Obama was in Accra this weekend. Sheer madness.  The insanity started a month before – Obama t-shirts appeared, and columns in the newspapers meditated on the significance of his choosing Ghana. But the last week, ahead of his arrival Friday night, has been just crazy. Walking through Osu on Friday afternoon, the street sellers had […]

sakawa! no, really! sakawa!

Over the last year, Ghana has experienced a wave of anxiety about sakawa – internet fraud. The fraud has been going on much longer, but there is a noticeable uptick in the level of public hysteria at the moment.  As with many worrying things in Ghana, it’s popularly attributed to Nigeria’s bad influence on ‘the […]

achievement!

In the course of my research in Ghana so far,  I have travelled about 100,000 square km of country, had malaria three times, been robbed twice (three times if you count the police), met hundreds of people, interviewed 80 internet cafe owners, and eaten various kinds of soup with my hands.  However, the most important […]

a technicality…

I am around Accra this week, surveying (conveniently) the internet cafes in my own neighbourhood, Kokomlemle. So far, I have interviewed 13. There should be 17 or so in all.  Then on to Adabraka, across the Ring Road. As I start to talk to small business owners in Accra, it’s evident there are some big […]