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Kosmos
Astronomia Astrofizyka
Inne

Kultura
Sztuka dawna i współczesna, muzea i kolekcje

Metoda
Metodologia nauk, Matematyka, Filozofia, Miary i wagi, Pomiary

Materia
Substancje, reakcje, energia
Fizyka, chemia i inżynieria materiałowa

Człowiek
Antropologia kulturowa Socjologia Psychologia Zdrowie i medycyna

Wizje
Przewidywania Kosmologia Religie Ideologia Polityka

Ziemia
Geologia, geofizyka, geochemia, środowisko przyrodnicze

Życie
Biologia, biologia molekularna i genetyka

Cyberprzestrzeń
Technologia cyberprzestrzeni, cyberkultura, media i komunikacja

Działalność
Wiadomości | Gospodarka, biznes, zarządzanie, ekonomia

Technologie
Budownictwo, energetyka, transport, wytwarzanie, technologie informacyjne

Information Technologies & International Development

Despite the multiplicity of affordances embedded in information and communication technologies (ICTs), most ICTs for development (ICTD) interventions tend to expect that technology will be used primarily for “serious” purposes. However, user behaviors suggest that leisure-related activities feature prominently compared to other behaviors considered more likely to generate development outcomes. Theories about play developed by philosophers, psychologists, and anthropologists offer useful ideas to understand these ludic behaviors. This article reviews typical stances toward mobile phone use within the ICTD community and argues for a reframing of ICTD discourse that acknowledges playful uses of technology as essential for personal development and adaptation to social and technological change.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1280 2014/09/10 - 21:32

Information and communication technology (ICT) is increasingly widespread in rural China, and is finding unlikely users: elderly people, rural women, and people with little education or disposable income. Their ICT use is driven by the desire to find connections and entertainment, and it offers three insights for broadly utilitarian ICT for development (ICTD) projects: first, rural users who are thought to be beyond the reach of ICTs because of their age or educational level and who do not see themselves as ICT users may nonetheless begin to use ICTs after observing other people going online and identifying activities that relate to their own lives and interests. Second, they have time to figure out how to incorporate ICTs into environments that are extremely different in terms of economy, social structures, and habits from the urban environments where ICTs originate. Finally, ICT uses that emerge from family-based practices rather than from hetero-directed programs can provide insights into the priorities or social practices of seemingly marginalized populations who have otherwise been overlooked.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1281 2014/09/10 - 21:32

M-PESA is a cellphone-based money transfer system which has been storied globally as a success in the Kenyan context. Our goal in this article is not to confirm or deny its success, nor is it to provide factual evidence of everyday actualities of M-PESA use in Kenya or elsewhere. Instead, our study focuses on how the marketing platforms provide discursive entry points for particular marginalized user-subject positions in the global staging of labor and consumption while contributing to a paradigm shift in information communication and technology for development (ICT4D) programs. Upon examination of much of the marketing material online for the Kenyan M-PESA model, we note that a key feature of promotional strategy is to highlight leisure and empowerment through the convenient use of mobile money tools. In this article, we examine leisurely exchange as part of the overall marketing of M-PESA in global ICT4D 2.0 (Heeks, 2009) cultures. We show how this happens by examining the online communication practices of social media participation on M-PESA-related YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter sites. We examine the role of marketing strategies using digital social space to build leisure networks by encouraging consumer participation. To this end we draw on select social media and visual texts to provide evidence for our analysis.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1282 2014/09/10 - 21:32

Telecenters, libraries, schools, and other public places where people access computer technology generally must decide which information and communication technologies (ICTs) to make available to the public. These decisions are often made based on a conception of which ICT uses are worthwhile, and often venues end up privileging instrumental uses—when people use the technology as an instrument toward productive goals—over non-instrumental uses, such as gaming or chatting. Users, on the other hand, do not necessarily make these distinctions and they switch seamlessly across multiple types of activities with technology. While public ICT providers must demonstrate good stewardship of public monies, when they privilege activities such as word processing a job application but not gaming or social networking, they constrain how people integrate technology meaningfully into their lives. This article presents the results of a study that investigated assumptions about the benefits of instrumental versus non- instrumental computer uses. Our findings indicate that people who use computers largely for non-instrumental purposes are generally as capable with the computers as those who use them for instrumental purposes, that people who largely use computers for these non-instrumental purposes are gaining skills that translate to instrumental tasks, and that dictating policy across largely software and tool-driven definitions of what constitutes “serious” or “worthwhile” uses of technology (and allocating public money to support access to such technology uses) does not match how individuals see themselves as users of these tools.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1283 2014/09/10 - 21:32

Through an analysis of popular Kenyan hashtags on Twitter, we argue that everyday leisure and entertainment practices interact with development and civic engagement in Kenya. This research draws from participation in the Kenyan Twittersphere, analysis of spaces created by hashtags, and fieldwork conducted in Nairobi between 2009 and 2012. Through hashtags, Kenyans on Twitter unite against perceived government corruption, respond to media misrepresentations of their country, share jokes, and participate in global conversations. We argue that sites emerge through the interaction of playful and serious content and that these sites should be examined within ICTD research. Playful activities should not be dismissed as irrelevant to development, as everyday use of Twitter is often imbued with topics tied to social, political, and economic development.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1284 2014/09/10 - 21:32

Despite the advancement of the ICT for Development (ICT4D) field over the last decade, it has been argued that its knowledge and theoretical contribution has been weak. It has also been argued that ICT4D lacks appropriate theoretically driven approaches to frame studies to generate insights. This article introduces the use of activity theory in the context of ICT4D, as a theory-based framework, to answer questions concerning how ICT4D has enabled changes at the “activity” level in the development setting. While activity theory has been used expansively in a number of related technology, education, cognitive, and social-psychology disciplines, it has been largely ignored in ICT4D research. Five activity theoretic contributions are identified for framing the study of ICT4D. Notwithstanding the relatively unexplored use of activity theory in ICT4D research, it is argued that there are several appealing ways it may generate insights. It is also argued that the ICT4D field is compatible with the underlying critical and emancipatory commitments of activity theory.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1213 2014/06/12 - 17:28

This article considers the role of one actor that is in the ascendancy in the development sector, namely the multinational management consulting organization. Drawing on science and technology studies concepts, we argue that such consultants are increasing and important, yet relatively invisible intermediaries and mediators in the development sphere that justify critical examination. Empirically, we draw on secondary data relating to the shape and nature of consulting in the development sector and focus specifically on a report by a multinational consulting organization to illustrate our argument. Our discussion argues that consultants can be treated both as intermediaries, relays in a network of development provision, and as highly political mediators that seek to expand and stabilize their position in the development network and, in so doing, actively shape what we take development to be. Overall, we suggest that understanding the ways in which such actors engage in the development sphere are important to current and future discussions and developments in information and communication technologies for development (ICT4D).

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1214 2014/06/12 - 17:28

The article highlights the contradictory role per diem payments play in swiftly attracting local participation in ICT for Development (ICT4D) projects, while undermining long-term capacity building and sustainability with such efforts. We discuss sustainability challenges endemic to ICT4D projects in light of our case study findings from a mobile phone–based intervention in a public health management information system (HMIS) in Malawi. We explore these challenges at multiple levels of analysis by drawing on the neo-institutional notion of “institutional logics.” For practitioners and policy makers, the article offers suggestions on how to counter some of the pitfalls associated with the use of per diems to incentivize ICT4D project participants. The study contributes to the institutional logics perspective by exploring empirically the intricate interdependence between two mutually reinforcing, yet seemingly incongruent institutional logics of development project impact and aid entitlement.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1215 2014/06/12 - 17:28

Increased migration means more transnational parenting of children who are left behind in their home countries. Parents pursuing opportunities abroad need to communicate with those who care for these now high-risk children, yet current technologies do not serve them well. Specifically, the technologies do not work for multiple caregivers, which includes parents, guardians, and educators. This research study reports findings of a design exploration into the ways an information and communication platform could be developed to increase communication among parents, guardians, and educators about the left-behind children. We draw on the results of interviews and design activities with 27 migrant parents, children, educators, and guardians living in or with ties to Jamaica. We highlight how hybrid approaches to designing social spaces (merging voice-based and online platforms) could improve access and meet the users’ differing needs. Moreover, increasing access opportunities would facilitate the (re)building of trust networks and improve a parent’s awareness of their child’s needs. We call for privacy, transparency, and visibility to be balanced against each other and built into an information and communication platform to connect the care network as a means of improving acceptance by the users.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1216 2014/06/12 - 17:28

Focusing on the case of two ambitious government-led ICT projects in Ethiopia, Woredanet and Schoolnet, this article offers a detailed analysis of how political and technical forces interact and negotiate in authoritarian, yet developmentally oriented regimes. The article builds on and extends the concept of “technopolitics,” which emerged in the history of technology tradition to account for the ability of competing actors to envision and enact political goals through the support of technical artifacts. The findings suggest that, even in a developing country that heavily relies on international assistance (such as Ethiopia), discrepancies between interpretations of the same artifacts emerging internationally and locally may lead to processes of substantial reshaping. Rather than employing ICTs according to donors’ demands of openness and democratization, the Ethiopian government has appropriated them to support its ambitious state- and nation-building process, while marginalizing alternative ICT uses promoted by other components of society, such as the private sector and Ethiopians in the diaspora.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1161 2014/03/11 - 20:43

Focusing on the case of two ambitious government-led ICT projects in Ethiopia, Woredanet and Schoolnet, this article offers a detailed analysis of how political and technical forces interact and negotiate in authoritarian, yet developmentally oriented regimes. The article builds on and extends the concept of “technopolitics,” which emerged in the history of technology tradition to account for the ability of competing actors to envision and enact political goals through the support of technical artifacts. The findings suggest that, even in a developing country that heavily relies on international assistance (such as Ethiopia), discrepancies between interpretations of the same artifacts emerging internationally and locally may lead to processes of substantial reshaping. Rather than employing ICTs according to donors’ demands of openness and democratization, the Ethiopian government has appropriated them to support its ambitious state- and nation-building process, while marginalizing alternative ICT uses promoted by other components of society, such as the private sector and Ethiopians in the diaspora.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1162 2014/03/11 - 20:43

Focusing on the case of two ambitious government-led ICT projects in Ethiopia, Woredanet and Schoolnet, this article offers a detailed analysis of how political and technical forces interact and negotiate in authoritarian, yet developmentally oriented regimes. The article builds on and extends the concept of “technopolitics,” which emerged in the history of technology tradition to account for the ability of competing actors to envision and enact political goals through the support of technical artifacts. The findings suggest that, even in a developing country that heavily relies on international assistance (such as Ethiopia), discrepancies between interpretations of the same artifacts emerging internationally and locally may lead to processes of substantial reshaping. Rather than employing ICTs according to donors’ demands of openness and democratization, the Ethiopian government has appropriated them to support its ambitious state- and nation-building process, while marginalizing alternative ICT uses promoted by other components of society, such as the private sector and Ethiopians in the diaspora.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1162 2014/03/11 - 20:43

all over India. The network has expanded into Latin America and Africa, as well as China, which has the largest database of grassroots innovations outside of India. ICTs will continue to help knowledge-rich, economically poor communities in shaping the development agenda.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1163 2014/03/11 - 20:43

all over India. The network has expanded into Latin America and Africa, as well as China, which has the largest database of grassroots innovations outside of India. ICTs will continue to help knowledge-rich, economically poor communities in shaping the development agenda.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1163 2014/03/11 - 20:43

Since the end of the 1990s, some Chinese software firms have undertaken offshore software development for Japanese firms. They are engaged not only in coding and testing, but also in design. The results of our interviews with Chinese and Japanese firms show that Chinese firms have acquired design skills through these joint developments. Japanese firms did not intentionally implement technology transfer, but the practice of offshore development did have this effect. In addition, we identify that the main reasons Japanese firms entrusted software design to Chinese firms were quality control and cost reduction of their software development projects. Currently, Chinese firms are employing the transferred skills for their own domestic projects, indicating that the export of software services has contributed significantly to the expansion of the domestic market. We conclude that China should focus on both domestic supply and export of software services as a strategy for developing its own software industry.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1121 2013/12/11 - 19:20

Since the end of the 1990s, some Chinese software firms have undertaken offshore software development for Japanese firms. They are engaged not only in coding and testing, but also in design. The results of our interviews with Chinese and Japanese firms show that Chinese firms have acquired design skills through these joint developments. Japanese firms did not intentionally implement technology transfer, but the practice of offshore development did have this effect. In addition, we identify that the main reasons Japanese firms entrusted software design to Chinese firms were quality control and cost reduction of their software development projects. Currently, Chinese firms are employing the transferred skills for their own domestic projects, indicating that the export of software services has contributed significantly to the expansion of the domestic market. We conclude that China should focus on both domestic supply and export of software services as a strategy for developing its own software industry.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1121 2013/12/11 - 19:20

International migrants often need social support to deal with an unfamiliar environment and reduce stress caused by prevailing attitudes in their host country, as well as that induced by distance and separation from their family. This study investigates whether mobile phones facilitate or inhibit migrants’ ability to seek the social support needed to reduce the stress they experience in their host country. Further, gender differences are examined and discussed. A quantitative survey of men (n 5 56), primarily Bangladeshis working in blue-collar occupations, and women (n 5 60), primarily Filipina domestics, was conducted in Singapore. For women, mobile use alleviated stress by increasing social support; emotional support had the greatest impact on their psychological well-being. Male migrant workers were more likely to experience stress the more they used their mobile phones and when receiving increased emotional support. This finding is in contrast to traditionally held assumptions about the beneficial impacts of mobile phones. We caution against treating immigrants as a homogeneous group, and recommend inclusion of variables such as gender to understand the role of technology-mediated social support in alleviating migrant stress. We further propose that policies and programs facilitating transnational communication for low-income migrants need to be examined carefully in terms of their unintended impacts.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1122 2013/12/11 - 19:20

International migrants often need social support to deal with an unfamiliar environment and reduce stress caused by prevailing attitudes in their host country, as well as that induced by distance and separation from their family. This study investigates whether mobile phones facilitate or inhibit migrants’ ability to seek the social support needed to reduce the stress they experience in their host country. Further, gender differences are examined and discussed. A quantitative survey of men (n 5 56), primarily Bangladeshis working in blue-collar occupations, and women (n 5 60), primarily Filipina domestics, was conducted in Singapore. For women, mobile use alleviated stress by increasing social support; emotional support had the greatest impact on their psychological well-being. Male migrant workers were more likely to experience stress the more they used their mobile phones and when receiving increased emotional support. This finding is in contrast to traditionally held assumptions about the beneficial impacts of mobile phones. We caution against treating immigrants as a homogeneous group, and recommend inclusion of variables such as gender to understand the role of technology-mediated social support in alleviating migrant stress. We further propose that policies and programs facilitating transnational communication for low-income migrants need to be examined carefully in terms of their unintended impacts.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1122 2013/12/11 - 19:20

This article presents extensive research conducted in Mozambique that aims to deeply understand how different social groups understand community multimedia centers (CMCs), which are structures combining a community radio and a telecenter. The social representations theory was adopted to interpret narratives of 231 interviewees from 10 Mozambican provinces. Interviewees included representatives of initiating agencies, local staff members, CMC users (both the radio and telecenter components), users of only the community radio, and community members not using the CMCs. Following the analysis of transcribed interviews, six main clusters were identified, each of them shedding light on a specific understanding of a CMC. These are discussed according to a set of sociodemographic variables. This study suggests that the social representations theory is a valuable framework to provide an integrated view of ICT4D interventions by giving a voice to local perspectives without overlooking the initiating agencies’ expectations.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1123 2013/12/11 - 19:20

This article presents extensive research conducted in Mozambique that aims to deeply understand how different social groups understand community multimedia centers (CMCs), which are structures combining a community radio and a telecenter. The social representations theory was adopted to interpret narratives of 231 interviewees from 10 Mozambican provinces. Interviewees included representatives of initiating agencies, local staff members, CMC users (both the radio and telecenter components), users of only the community radio, and community members not using the CMCs. Following the analysis of transcribed interviews, six main clusters were identified, each of them shedding light on a specific understanding of a CMC. These are discussed according to a set of sociodemographic variables. This study suggests that the social representations theory is a valuable framework to provide an integrated view of ICT4D interventions by giving a voice to local perspectives without overlooking the initiating agencies’ expectations.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1123 2013/12/11 - 19:20

Since the year 2000, the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have anchored efforts to combat global poverty. As we near 2015, this article assesses ICTs’ role in reaching the goals, with an emphasis on urban poverty. Over the lifespan of the MDGs, debate about ICTs and development has grown. At one pole of this debate are those who see ICTs as enabling rapid growth and citizen empowerment; at the other pole are those who warn that “technical fixes” cannot overcome the historic and structural causes of poverty. In this article, using the organizing framework of the eight MDGs, we discuss these debates by reviewing examples of ICT projects that aim to further the goals’ realization. Many of these projects suggest that ICTs are useful, particularly with respect to increasing information and enhancing services, a common theme throughout this article. However, we also raise critical queries about the allure of “technology-boosterism” (Heeks, 2010, p. 629). These range from questioning the measurable impact and sustainability of ICT4D to the vision of development embedded in ICT4D and whether new technologies can subvert the underlying causes of global poverty. Our article shows that, while ICTs can be enablers for developmental processes, we must listen to communities in poverty when deciding how ICTs should feature in the post-2015 agenda.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1124 2013/12/11 - 19:20

Since the year 2000, the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) have anchored efforts to combat global poverty. As we near 2015, this article assesses ICTs’ role in reaching the goals, with an emphasis on urban poverty. Over the lifespan of the MDGs, debate about ICTs and development has grown. At one pole of this debate are those who see ICTs as enabling rapid growth and citizen empowerment; at the other pole are those who warn that “technical fixes” cannot overcome the historic and structural causes of poverty. In this article, using the organizing framework of the eight MDGs, we discuss these debates by reviewing examples of ICT projects that aim to further the goals’ realization. Many of these projects suggest that ICTs are useful, particularly with respect to increasing information and enhancing services, a common theme throughout this article. However, we also raise critical queries about the allure of “technology-boosterism” (Heeks, 2010, p. 629). These range from questioning the measurable impact and sustainability of ICT4D to the vision of development embedded in ICT4D and whether new technologies can subvert the underlying causes of global poverty. Our article shows that, while ICTs can be enablers for developmental processes, we must listen to communities in poverty when deciding how ICTs should feature in the post-2015 agenda.

http://itidjournal.org/index.php/itid/article/view/1124 2013/12/11 - 19:20