Current Challenge in the Community
The given project focuses on the community from the Cape York region of Far North Queensland. This territory is considered regional and remote Australia, meaning that it is located far from capital cities. Consequently, this area faces fundamental challenges, and Internet and mobile coverage is among them. According to the Far North Queensland Regional Organization of Councils (FNQROC) (2019, p. 5), this territory suffers from insufficient coverage. In particular, independent testing revealed that these regional and remote areas have many Black Spots that denote places where there is no mobile and Internet signal. The FNQROC (2019, p. 1) explains that almost 70% of the community’s territory can be described as Black Spots. This information demonstrates that the whole Far North Queensland region experiences significant problems because of the given state of affairs.
It is reasonable to understand why the community is in such a disadvantaged position. The FNQROC (2019, p. 9) reveals that three mobile network operators (MNOs), including Telstra, Optus, and Vodafone, operate in Australia. Even though Telstra offers the most extensive coverage, none of the MNOs manages to serve the needs of this remote region to a full extent. The rationale behind this fact is that the MNOs do not have a sufficient number of sites in this area. That is why Engineers Without Borders (EWB) (2021, p. 16) explain that it is reasonable to improve the existing mobile phone hotspot technology by the Center for Appropriate Technology (CfAT). It will ensure that mobile coverage is of decent quality. This project is considered a practical solution to the current challenge.
Stakeholder Identification and Management Plan
The given project will influence many stakeholders directly and indirectly, and the given paragraph is going to comment on them. Improving the CfAT hotspot will offer direct benefits to inhabitants of the region under investigation since they will receive better Internet and mobile coverage. Even though these stakeholders are highly interested in this project, they have little power to influence it. The opposite situation is with the MNOs because they can improve the situation by building more sites in the region, but they refrain from doing it because it can be unprofitable. One can also admit that businesses and tourists are indirectly involved in the project because their higher interest in the region could become a signal for the MNOs to improve the coverage. However, the area under analysis does not attract these stakeholders because of insufficient coverage. Finally, the national and regional authorities are essential stakeholders because they are responsible for and capable of improving the signal for their citizens.
It is also necessary to create a management plan for the given project. According to the information above, its objective is to improve the CfAT hotspot to provide the Far North Queensland region with better phone and Internet coverage. EWB (2021, p. 16) explain that such a result can be achieved if one manages to intensify the existing signal that the area receives. It denotes that the most significant step is for teams to develop practical means of how this objective can be implemented. It is challenging to set specific timelines for this project because improving the existing technology can be complex. However, there is no doubt that immediate actions are required because the region inhabitants are currently experiencing the challenge. Thus, the information above reveals that improving the CfAT hotspot is a significant project, meaning that sufficient resources should be allocated to implement it as soon as possible.
Engineers Without Borders Australia (2021) 2021 EWB Challenge design brief.
Far North Queensland Regional Organization of Councils (2019) Mobile coverage report. Web.