Konbit : bridging social, cultural, and political worlds by accelerating job growth and creation for the illiterate, disconnected workers
Author(s)Elliott, Greg (Gregory Talcott)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Architecture. Program in Media Arts and Sciences.
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Current employment technology typically relies on the concept of a CV or resume -a highly precise and constructed document. The creation of this document requires intricate knowledge of a process that is often opaque to those living in developed nations, who rely on training and experience to write compelling CV's. For those living in developing countries, this process is more difficult, and for those that have no internet access or are illiterate, creating a first-world resume is nearly impossible. That said, when firstworld organizations in developing countries bring with them their expectations of hiring which may or may not fit with the natives of that country. We propose a system, "Konbit," that creates a cultural and technological bridge between those with skills in developing countries and those with first-world expectations of potential employees. This platform allows literate or illiterate workers to describe their skills and life experiences as story-like messages in their native language, requires no technological upgrades from these workers, and transforms and offers this data as deep, humanized characterizations of potential employees. Non-profit organizations (NGOs) and government organizations (GOs) can search this data in a technologically modern format, viewing an automatically constructed resume for each caller. While other systems attempt to create miniature CV's via SMS-based messaging, these systems are not accessible by the illiterate and impose western CV-based culture onto applicants, resulting in low-fidelity representations given that SMS text messages are by nature short and inappropriate for extensive data input. Given the focus on the most is connected workers, Konbit deployed and received data from over 10,000 people in Port-au-Prince, Haiti, where the literacy rate, at the time of writing, was around 50% and the unemployment rate was more than 80%. This system was also beta-tested with 30 Haitian-Americans in Miami, Florida. The implications of the thesis will be relevant to any area - developed or developing - that is affected by illiteracy, poor training, or cultural gaps between workers and employers, and may serve as a more effective tool for employee characterization and interviewing in all job sectors.
Thesis (S.M.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, School of Architecture and Planning, Program in Media Arts and Sciences, 2011.Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (p. 75-77).
DepartmentProgram in Media Arts and Sciences (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Architecture. Program in Media Arts and Sciences.