DEFINITION The new information and communications technologies are among the driving forces of globalisation. They are bringing people together, and bringing decision makers unprecedented new tools for development. At the same time, however, the gap between information ‘haves’ and ‘have-nots’ is widening, and there is a real danger that the world’s poor will be excluded from the emerging knowledge-based global economy. (Kofi Anan, 2002)Hundreds of alternatives ways to define the digitaldivide
RESULT & CAUSE OF POVERTY Lack of adequate infrastructure and lack of knowledge are two major obstacles that impede mass connectivity.Poverty: non or lack access to necessary resources tolive (standard human dignity)Technology → InformationOnline communications (Internet ): information,education, civil & political empowerment
SUMARY OF THE GAPAll of the developing countries of theworld own 4% of the world’s computers.97 % of adolescents live in developing world.75 % of the world’s 700 million telephone sets can be found in the 9richest countries.High percentage of developing country residents live in ruralareas. The proportion can rise to as much as 85 percent of the population inthe least developed countries and is estimated at 75 percent overall in Asia.Rural access to communication networks in developing countriesis much more limited than in urban areas.
MULTIPLE SOLUTION Problematic: The term “Digital Divide” access requires only purchase and installation of technology. But: multiple dimensions → it is not only money and technology that matter Eliminating the digital divide requires more than the provision of access to technologies. (can contribute but isn’t sufficient for development) Socio + Economic development + ITC
IT ARE CAPABLE OF ALLEVIATING POVERTY? Telephone (line & mobile... Still expensive in rural areas) Radio (& Television) Public address system (Asia, more localized than radio, but less simple and inexpensive) Computers and the Internet (http://practicalaction.org/video/view/dryingvegetabl es)
TELEPHONE AND RADIO... Research on poor communities suggeststhat the telephone and radio remain the most important (direct access) ICT tools for changing the lives of the poor
WHY INTERNET? Telecentre School (“one laptop for children”) Small businessInternet in one mean of communication &commerceIt’s a very useful gadget
WHY INTERNET? But it will become in THE MEAN OF COMMUNICATION & COMMERCE All of the developing countries of the world own 4% of the world’s computers. 97 % of adolescents live in developing world.
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