The Global Text Project: The Arabic Imperative Richard T. Watson—University of Georgia Nagwa Badr—Ain Shams University Donald J. McCubbrey—University of Denver The problem Poverty is a problem for half the world Mass education is a means of relieving mass poverty Textbooks are essential to education Thecurrent business model does not work for developing economies Goals Create a free library of 1,000 electronic textbooks for students in the developing world Cover the range of topics typically encountered in a university’s undergraduate programs Engage the global academic community and global corporations to create and sponsor the library Proof of concept Createan infrastructure for free, open-content, global electronic texts Publish two books in four languages Arabic, Chinese, English, and Spanish Develop a sustainable financial model Learn how to scale Build a system around the scarce resource Opportunity $100 laptop XML text experience AACSB BizEd article Enthusiastic reception of idea Economic development Aidagencies should focus on specific tasks (e.g., textbooks) William Easterly, former World Bank economist The return on educational instructional materials is estimated to be up to 14 times higher than the return on physical facilities World Bank report Economic development ―Three broad facts about education have emerged from recent research. Firstly, almost universally education is found to lift people out of poverty. Secondly, when a comparison is made between investing in education and other forms of investment, the returns from investing in education are on average higher. Thirdly, the returns to education–in the sense of the increment in income that accrues to each year of education–are much higher for those with higher levels of education‖ Paul Collier, Director of the Centre for the Study of African Economies at Oxford University The environment Wired 2007.09 Key directions Quality Quality Assurance Board Editorial structure Procedures for quality Sponsorship of books Quality (book) Editor-in-Chief Develop the structure of a book Assurance of complete coverage Identification of links between chapters Manage consistency between chapters Recruit chapter editors Manage relations with the book sponsor Chair regular meetings of the chapter editors Quality (chapter) Chapter editor Develop the structure of a chapter Take a lead role in writing a chapter Quality assurance for additions and deletions Recruit contributors to ensure a global perspective on key issues Create links where appropriate to other books in the series and relevant Web sites Recruit contributors to help with writing the chapter, developing exercises, support material and so forth Renewable student projects Massive waste in university education Develop human, software, and communication infrastructure to reduce waste Highly motivating An organizational design Domain of student opportunity Software requirements Enable searching across a library, field, book, or chapter Management of access rights MathML support Multiple output forms Multiple languages Software requirements The scarce resource principle of design Maximize the number of people who can contribute Uploading of word processing files All maintenance done within a word processor Simple interface Partners Ain Shams University, Egypt University of Concepción, Chile Wuhan University & Shanghai Jiao Tong University, China Arabic imperative How do we efficiently and effectively translate to and from Arabic? How do we handle technological and scientific terms? How do we engage students in Arabic universities? How do we promote the project? What are the cultural pitfalls? Engaging many for the benefit of many more QuickTime™ an d a Photo - JPEG decompressor are need ed to see this p icture .