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Poverty alleviation gets a high-tech reboot

By Ma Si and Zheng Yiran ( China Daily )

Updated: 2017-04-20

Poverty alleviation measures have been updated with more big data technology and cloud computing systems in Guizhou province in southwestern China - to better target those in need.

The poverty alleviation cloud system, introduced in Guizhou on December 2015, aims to facilitate local government in managing information on low-income people in a more scientific and more dynamic manner.

Shandong-based Inspur Group Co Ltd, the server manufacturer, has been working on a big-data platform, to assist local poverty alleviation officials in aiding poverty-stricken families through innovative measures.

By following the data - such as educational background, occupation, as well as income, and conducting related analyses - the local government is able to decide on what type of subsidies and assistance to help the less advantaged people and provide more precise and targeted support, said Wang Xiangcheng, a chief technologist at Inspur's big-data poverty alleviation department.

"The priority of poverty alleviation is to identify those in need," he said.

Zhou Xing, from the Poverty Alleviation and Development Office of Guizhou Province, said the big data system could better locate targeted groups.

He said the platform follows visits to every interviewed family and conducted investigations into the collected data.

The big-data platform involves an evaluation system with up to 84 indicators. After analyzing the data, it displays distributions to the poverty stricken families, their levels of poverty, and offers specific plans to those in need in Guizhou province.

As of last year, the platform was tracking 6.23 million impoverished residents in Guizhou, living in about 9,000 villages around the province.

Inspur hopes its technology can play a role in helping track the funding during the process. Thus, it could be useful in clarifying responsibilities, accurately monitoring and evaluating the use of poverty-relief funds.

This is part of the tech group's broader efforts to assist the country's efforts and goals in lifting up 70 million people out of poverty by 2020.

Contact the writer at masi@chinadaily.com.cn and zhengyiran@chinadaily.com.cn

(China Daily 04/20/2017 page18)

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