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Citizenship is finding its voice in Mexico as Oscar Salazar and Jorge Soto are harnessing technology to promote social change. Their company, CitiVox, uses mobile and crowdfunding technology to build and enhance the relationship between citizens, and government – increasing civic engagement and government accountability and transparency. Previously part of eFlyer, a mobile marketing company founded by Oscar and Jorge in 2007, CitiVox spun off CitiVox soon after its creation.
Engineers by training, Oscar and Jorge have both technical skills and a passion for entrepreneurship. Oscar studied information technology and received a Master’s from the University of Calgary. He won a scholarship to study at ParisTech where he completed a Doctorate in Telecommunications. In 2005, he started a business, e-medicis, and it was through this that Oscar and Jorge met. Jorge studied at the Tec de Monterrey, with a specialization in business form the Universidad Pontífica Cornillas in Madrid. He also studied Non-Profit administration at Columbia University.
While eFlyer was successfully growing, it wasn’t personally fulfilling for Oscar and Jorge. They kept asking themselves the same question: “How can citizens and technology change society?” In 2009, they developed Cuidemos el Voto (“Protect the Vote”), an election monitoring tool that lets citizens and NGOs report fraud, violence, and ballot theft via twitter, SMS, and e-mail.
CitiVox enables real-time information sharing between citizens and their government. The major features include: Report, Manage, Measure, and Communicate. The company creates significant value for the public sector, private sector, and civil society.
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