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Impacts

This startup fights for fun and meaningful learning experiences in Thailand

The outbreak of Covid-19 was a turning point for Thai education. When schools closed and shifted to online classes, a lack of digital tools and skills, as well as outdated curricula, were laid bare. dtacblog spoke to Chalipa Dulyakorn of INSKRU, the education startup and a partner of dtac’s Safe Internet project, to understand how tomorrow’s classrooms can be redesigned to build digital resilience among children and youth. Create safe spaces in school INSKRU has made learning more enjoyable for over two million students. In 2018, it reached the final round of dtac Plikthai, a platform to crowd-source socially conscious initiatives. It received the funding of 100,000 baht and was connected by dtac to a group of experts. Ms. Chalipa then used the money for creative workshops with teachers, which turned out a success. Not long after, INSKRU was chosen as a partner of dtac Safe Internet, whose ambition is to foster digital resilience in children and youth by joining forces with students, teachers, parents, and both private and public sectors. dtac leverages INSKRU’s expertise and their community of 200,000 teachers, who play a vital role in redesigning learning process and act as guardians in school. “dtac has set a…

New Culture Needed to Fight Cyberbullying Says Behavioral Economist

During the past years, discussions on behavioral economics have been growing among economic and social policymakers in Thailand. Their debates have raised questions as to whether traditional mindsets are still practical for policymaking in today’s context. Case in point: policies that try to promote savings among Thais. They have hardly achieved any success because of cultural factors, and often Thais get old before they can get rich.To support its fight against cyberbullying, dtac collaborated with Chulalongkorn University’s (CU) Faculty of Economics to use behavioral economics to better design practical policies and solutions to this issue. Together, dtac and Chulalongkorn University worked on a framework to engage Thailand’s youth around Safe Internet projects that could truly change behaviors. To better understand how behavioral economics can promote healthier online spaces, dtacblog spoke to Asst. Prof. Thanee Chaiwat, president of CU’s Program in Political Economy and director of the Chulalongkorn Experimental Economics Center,“Focusing on motivators including emotions and experiences, behavioral economics recognize that humans are not always rational,” said Prof. Thanee. “If motivators are well-designed, humans can be expected to give positive responses—similarly to a free market system. Behavioral economics can address cyberbullying too, as it recognizes the cultural complexity behind the problem.”Prof.…

Punch Up vows to transform Thailand with the power of data visualization

In this month’s Impact, dtacblog speaks to the founders of an innovative agency specializing in data-driven storytelling. In March 2019, an online media outlet “ELECT” sprang into operation with solid information on elections. At that time, Thailand was preparing to hold its first general election since the 2014 coup. ELECT offered a fresh perspective on the election via data, charts and graphics. Behind these infographics was Thanisara “Ging” Ruangdej, who then partnered with Patchar “Fai” Duangklad in founding Punch Up as a Data Storytelling Studio. “Many people have followed ELECT, making clear that to politics is something people care about. ELECT has attracted users and generated interactions. I also noticed the growing trend of data storytelling in the world. News giants like New York Times in the US and The Guardian in the UK have embraced the trend. So, we wanted to take data storytelling in Thailand farther and go beyond the political scope only. With Punch Up, we are addressing social, economic and environmental issues too,” Thanisara told dtacblog. Patchar added, “In the past, we thought only media could present information to the public. But after studying business models, we have concluded that we can work as a data…

This family-owned textile factory is pushing for a more sustainable future with dtac

dtac "Think Hai d" t-shirts are now made of plastic bottles and old clothes, saving thousands of liters per shirt. While dtac isn’t a clothing brand, the company does produce a line of branded items sold at the dtac House headquarters. As dtac curbs its environmental impact across its entire supply chain, the mobile operator turned its attention to the t-shirts it produces. The manufacturing of a single t-shirt can require enough water to quench a human’s thirst for three years. Moreover, the textile and fashion industry account for 10 per cent of the world’s total carbon-dioxide emissions today. It is the second biggest polluter, behind the energy industry. Thus began dtac’s search for a way to curb its fashion line’s carbon footprint, which led to contracting Saeng Charoen Grand Company Limited (SC GRAND), Thailand’s first textile recycling factory. Jirarot “Wat” Pojanavaraphan, managing director and third-generation owner of SC GRAND , told dtac blog, “For dtac’s t-shirt production, we use two sources of recycled materials: old clothes and plastic bottles. The result is a recycled polyester fiber blend. With four old t-shirts and four plastic bottles, we can make one brand-new t-shirt!” The process begins with separating textile waste by…

One man’s fight for those missing but not forgotten

Impacts is a monthly feature from dtac blog exploring mobile connectivity in the context of sustainability. This month, we interviewed Eakalak Loomchomkhae, Director of the Mirror Foundation’s Missing Person Center, The Mirror Foundation. We met with Mr. Eakalak also participated in dtac’s Safe Internet Project, a flagship program of dtac teaching school-age children how to stay safe online. Missing persons “Ironically, Thailand’s government has a department for missing cars, but there is no a center for missing persons. This shows how little awareness there is for the missing persons problem,” said Mr. Eakalak. “It is a problem that has been swept under the carpet for decades by every government.” Located in Mae Yao, Chiang Rai, the Missing Person Center is close to porous borders traveled by numerous migrants from neighboring Burma and Laos, in addition to a rural exodus of Thais moving to cities. When the Mirror Foundation began investigating cases of missing persons, it found that many were caused by human trafficking. As it dug deeper, the foundation faced threats from the traffickers, and little support from authorities. In sleepy Mae Yao alone (pop. 20,000), they sound found 20 missing persons cases. And their mission grew from there. The…