Local relevance is key to ICTs for development

14 October 2004
Source: Global Knowledge Partnership

Asian rice farmers using laptop computers or fishermen navigating with
handheld global positioning system (GPS) devices are the kind of images
often associated with use of information and communication technologies
(ICTs) for development. But such approaches have limited application and
radio and television often still represent the most effective means of
communicating information to poor communities in developing countries.

In this article, Nalaka Gunawardene, founder of Television Trust for the
Environment (TVE) Asia Pacific, says ICTs can help South Asian countries
overcome poverty but they are not a cure-all. He stresses the need for
ICT programmes to use locally relevant information -- not mere
translations -- and for programme implementers to "stop treating poor
people as some kind of sub-human species with a simpler set of living
needs and aspirations".

Gunawardene says that those implementing ICT programmes often bring
biases. Many poverty experts, for instance, overlook the urban poor in
Asia, where 40 per cent of people live in cities. And research suggests
ICT projects should not only provide information about survival and
food, but also about bank loans, jobs, insurance, culture and politics.

Link to full Global Knowledge Partnership article by Nalaka Gunawardene

Frederick Noronha (FN)                  Nr Convent Saligao 403511 Goa India
Freelance Journalist                    P: 832-2409490 M: 9822122436
http://www.livejournal.com/users/goalinks   http://fn.swiki.net
http://www.ryze.com/go/fredericknoronha     http://fn-floss.notlong.com

***GKD is solely supported by EDC, a Non-Profit Organization***
To post a message, send it to: <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
To subscribe or unsubscribe, send a message to:
<[EMAIL PROTECTED]>. In the 1st line of the message type:
subscribe gkd OR type: unsubscribe gkd
Archives of previous GKD messages can be found at:

Reply via email to