Arjuna Sathiaseelan: An Internet for the Masses, by the Masses


Monday, November 20, 2017, 11:30am to 1:00pm


Maxwell Dworkin 119

Abstract: The Internet has crossed new frontiers with new services being offered every day. As a result, today’s Internet represents a critical infrastructure enabling remote health care, education, employment, e-governance, digital economy, social networks, and more. As such, Internet access should be universal in terms of availability and ability to contribute to the wider society, thereby enabling true digital inclusion to all. Although this vision is shared among both major stakeholders, the reality of today’s Internet and its level of digital inclusion is confronted by a growing digital divide - increasing geographic and socioeconomic challenges separate between those with sufficient access to the Internet and those who cannot afford access to its services. In this talk I will take the catchphrase, "United we stand, divided we fall"  and apply it in the context of addressing one of the greatest access challenge of the 21st century. Through the talk, I will also use the opportunity to discuss some current state of the art Internet technologies that can be utilised to achieve my vision of connecting the next three billion.

Biography: Dr Arjuna Sathiaseelan is a Senior Research Associate at the Computer Laboratory, University of Cambridge. He leads the Networking for Development (N4D Lab). The research group conducts research on novel Internet architectures for improving and reducing the cost of Internet access. He is the Chair of IRTF Global Access to the Internet for All (GAIA) research group and a member of the Internet Research Steering Group (IRSG). He is part of the Ammbr Foundation which aims to build the world's largest decentralised telecommunications network using blockchain. He was in the Access Advisory Panel of the United Nations Foundation's $75 million Digital Impact Alliance (funded by the Melinda and Gates Foundation, USAID and SIDA). He is also in the advisory board of Ubuntu Power - an social enterprise focussed on providing affordable off grid energy and Internet to underserved communities and Ensemble- an social business incubator in Democratic Republic of Congo. He is also in the advisory board of the EU NETCOMMOMS project. He is a member of the Center for Science and Policy (CSaP). Arjuna Sathiaseelan has a PhD in Networking from Kings College London (2005), MSc in Computing and Internet Systems from Kings College London (2001) and Bachelors in Computer Science and Engineering from NIT, Trichy, India (2000).