Journal Cover Information Technologies & International Development
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  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
   ISSN (Print) 1544-7529 - ISSN (Online) 1544-7537
   Published by Georgia Institute of Tech Homepage  [1 journal]
  • ICTD 2016 From the Guest Editor —Selected Papers from ICTD2016

    • Authors: Susan Wyche
      Abstract: This Special Section of Information Technologies & International Development (ITID) presents selected  papers from the International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies and Development (ICTD2016) held in Ann Arbor, Michigan June 3–5, 2017. This was the eighth iteration of the conference and marks the conference shift from an 18-month to an annual cycle.
      PubDate: 2017-10-26
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • ICTD2016 Deploying ICTs for Development: An Evolutionary Perspective

    • Authors: Balaji Parthasarathy, Yuko Aoyama
      Abstract: As contemporary ICTs (information and communication technologies) become increasingly powerful and affordable, deploying them to improve the lives of the underprivileged is alluring. While the literature has mostly focused on investigating the efficacy and outcomes of ICT deployments in diverse domains, this article situates such deployments as a socially, spatially, and temporally specific outcome within shifting conceptions of development, from capitalist economic expansion to poverty eradication and inclusive growth. By so doing, the article explains why ICT deployments possess the characteristics that they do. The article highlights not only the novelty of ICTs, but also why deployments seek new forms of innovation (frugal innovation) and partnerships (which bring together historically antagonistic players such as multinational enterprises and nongovernmental organizations) in a quest to include hitherto-excluded populations (at the bottom of the pyramid).
      PubDate: 2017-10-26
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • ICTD 2016 Mobile Phones and Gender Empowerment: Enactment of Restricted

    • Authors: Hoan Nguyen, Arul Chib, Ram Mahalingham
      Abstract: TK
      PubDate: 2017-10-26
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • ICTD 2016 Privacy in Repair: An Analysis of the Privacy Challenges
           Surrounding Broken Digital Artifacts in Bangladesh

    • Authors: Syed Ishtiaque Ahmed, Shion Guha, Md. Rashidujjaman Rifat, Faysal Hossain Shezan, Nicola Dell
      Abstract: This paper presents a study on the privacy concerns associated with the practice of repairing broken digital objects in Bangladesh. Historically, repair of old or broken technologies has received less attention in ICTD scholarship than design, development, or use. As a result, the potential privacy risks associated with repair practices have remained mostly unaddressed. This paper describes our three-month long ethnographic study that took place at ten major repair sites in Dhaka, Bangladesh. We show a variety of ways in which the privacy of an individual’s personal data may be compromised during the repair process. We also examine people’s perceptions around privacy in repair, and its connections with their broader social and cultural values. Finally, we discuss the challenges and opportunities for future research to strengthen the repair ecosystem in developing countries. Taken together, our findings contribute to the growing discourse around post-use cycles of technology.
      PubDate: 2017-10-26
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • ICTD 2016 Caring for the “Next Billion” Mobile Handsets: Proprietary
           Closures and the Work of Repair

    • Authors: Lara Houston, Steven J. Jackson
      Abstract: ICTD is profoundly interested in the “next billion” users and how information infrastructures might provide opportunities for enhancing their life chances. In this article we ask how the concept of care might be generatively extended to the “lives” of the “next billion” mobile handsets. We draw on a growing literature on repair in ICTD and HCI and on theories of care from the social sciences to make two contributions. First, our ethnographic study of mobile phone repair in downtown Kampala, Uganda provides new insights into how technologies are sustained in developing contexts, with a special focus on how independent repair technicians circumvent the proprietary closures that limit their work. Second, we show how attending to care in ICTD contexts can help us locate forms of technical work (here, repair) within wider moral and political orderings. Thinking about repair and care together opens new possibilities for ICTD to engage with the materiality of technologies beyond the points of design, adoption and use the field has more typically privileged.

      PubDate: 2017-10-26
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Overcoming Citizen Mistrust and Enhancing Democratic Practices: Results
           from the E-participation Platform México Participa

    • Authors: Maria Elena Meneses, Brandie Nonnecke, Alejandro Martin del Campo, Sanjai Krishnan, Jay Patel, Moonhyok Kim, Camille Crittenden, Ken Goldberg
      Abstract: This article reviews the experiences, obstacles, and lessons learned from development and deployment of the México Participa e-participation platform as a case study for future platforms, both in Mexico and in transitional democracies with similar sociopolitical characteristics such as pervasive distrust of public institutions and limited civic participation. México Participa was released three months before the June 2015 midterm Mexican presidential election. Although the platform continues to operate, this article focuses on the period leading up to the election. 3,054 participants offered 336 suggestions and provided 14,033 peer-to-peer assessments. A postelection survey highlighted the need for a platform such as México Participa to be continually available to sustain citizen evaluation of government performance and to promote transparency and accountability.

      PubDate: 2017-08-10
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Perceptions of Online Political Participation and Freedom of Expression:
           An Exploratory Study in Cambodia

    • Authors: Jayson W. Richardson, John B. Nash, Amanda King
      Abstract: This article focuses on Cambodian Internet users’ perceptions of online freedom of expression as well as their perceptions of online political participation. This exploratory research focuses on the data from 895 Cambodians gathered through an electronic survey delivered to a simple random sample of 35,000 Cambodian smartphone users. The study concludes with a discussion on policy, practice, and future research about online expression and online political participation both in Cambodia and in the greater field of international development.
      PubDate: 2017-07-21
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Working with the Grain: How Amenable to Digital Transformation Are the
           Monitoring and Repair of Rural Water Points in Tanzania'

    • Authors: Kapongola Nganyanyuka, Javier Martinez, Juma Lungo, Jeroen Verplanke, Yola Georgiadou
      Abstract: Rural water services are still not working for poor people. The rising mobile phone penetration in Africa raised hopes in the development community that mobile phone–based ICT platforms could digitally transform rural water supply services. Our approach to platform development is “working with the grain” of the information flow between citizens and district officials, in view of emerging funding opportunities for water point repair in Tanzania (Payment-by-Results). We distinguish between discretionary tasks and transaction-intensive tasks in the information flow. An ICT platform for monitoring and repairing rural water points should start by digitally transforming tasks with high transaction intensiveness and low discretion that occur outside village and district institutions. Actors in rural water supply should collaboratively simplify formal rules and procedures that govern information flows within local institutions before considering further digitization. 
      PubDate: 2017-07-21
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Mobile Identity Construction by Male and Female Students in Pakistan: On,
           In, and Through the Phone

    • Authors: Bushra Hassan, Tim Unwin
      Abstract: This article reports on focus group research in Pakistan about the symbolic value and use of mobile phones by students in constructing their identities on the phone, in the phone, and through the phone. A striking conclusion is the difference between how men and women use their phones, and we provide accounts of the harassment and bullying of women through their mobiles.

      PubDate: 2017-04-26
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Victim, Mother, or Untapped Resource? Discourse Analysis of the
           Construction of Women in ICT Policies

    • Authors: Annika Andersson, Mathias Hatakka
      Abstract: This article analyzes the construction of women in national ICT policies in South and Southeast Asia. The aim is to unravel the role ascribed to women in these policies and how this affects suggested measures. The research is based on critical discourse analysis and shows that women are mainly constructed as victims, mothers, or an untapped resource. We argue that if women are specifically targeted in policies, careful attention should be given to how they are portrayed. Our analysis also shows that in most cases the suggested solutions on how to include women in the ICT society only deal with the symptoms of gender inequality rather than the structures that prevent equal opportunities. We conclude by discussing implications for research and practice.
      PubDate: 2017-04-13
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Technopolitics and ICTD in Africa

    • Authors: Melissa Tully
      PubDate: 2017-03-30
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Engagement in the Knowledge Economy: Regional Patterns of Content Creation
           with a Focus on Sub-Saharan Africa

    • Authors: Sanna Ojanperä, Mark Graham, Ralph Straumann, Stefano De Sabbata, Matthew Zook
      Abstract: Increasing digital connectivity has sparked many hopes for the democratization of information and knowledge production in sub-Saharan Africa. To investigate the patterns of knowledge creation in the region compared to other world regions, we examine three key metrics: spatial distributions of academic articles (traditional knowledge production), collaborative software development, and Internet domain registrations (digitally mediated knowledge production). We find that, contrary to the expectation that digital content is more evenly geographically distributed than academic articles, the global and regional patterns of collaborative coding and domain registrations are more uneven than those of academic articles. Despite hopes for democratization afforded by the information revolution, sub-Saharan Africa produces a smaller share of digital content than academic articles. Our results suggest the factors often framed as catalysts in the transformation into a knowledge economy do not relate to the three metrics uniformly. While connectivity is an important enabler of digital content creation, it seems to be only a necessary, not a sufficient, condition; wealth, innovation capacity, and public spending on education are also important factors.
      PubDate: 2017-03-08
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Can Digital Discussion Support Tools Provide Cost-Effective Options for
           Agricultural Extension Services?

    • Authors: Shahbaz Mushtaq, Kate Reardon-Smith, Neil Cliffe, Jenny Ostini, Helen Farley, Joanne Doyle, Matt Kealley
      Abstract: Agricultural extension that delivers timely, targeted, and cost-effective support to farmers will help ensure the sustainability and adaptive capacity of agriculture, enhancing both food security and environmental security. Leveraging advances in agriclimate science and adult education, innovative digital technologies offer significant new opportunities to engage with farmers and to support decision making. In this study, animated video clips (machinimas), developed using the Second LifeTM virtual world gaming platform, model conversations around climate risk and critical on-farm decisions in the Australian sugarcane farming industry. Early evaluation indicates that this is an engaging format that promotes discussion by leveraging farmers’ natural modes of information gathering and social learning. Comparison with conventional extension practices indicates that these discussion support tools may be a cost-effective addition to existing approaches. The format’s flexibility means machinimas are readily updated with new information and customized to meet the needs of different farmer groups. Rapid growth in digital access globally and the scalability of such approaches promise greater equity of access to high-value information, critical to better risk management decision making, at minimal cost, for millions of farmers.
      PubDate: 2017-03-08
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Inclusive Capitalism and Development: Case Studies of Telecenters
           Fostering Inclusion Through ICTs in Bangladesh

    • Authors: Ahmed Tareq Rashid
      Abstract: Lack of sustainable approaches for public access venues like telecentres have led to the emergence of several entrepreneurial and market-driven models of telecentres in developing countries that are driven by multinational corporations, governments and social enterprises. This phenomenon falls under the rubric of inclusive capitalism which argues that in the contemporary socioeconomic context, private investment and entrepreneurial activities are crucial for economic growth and job creation in developing countries. In this paper, I undertake three case studies of telecentres in Bangladesh: a private sector enterprise developed and operated by a multinational corporation, a social enterprise, and a public-private partnership. The case studies combine review of organizational documents as well as analysis of survey data from the ‘Global Impact Study of Public Access to Information & Communication Technologies’. While a common feature in all three of the cases is the reliance on market mechanisms to provide affordable ICT services to the poor, the findings highlight how in some cases the initiatives approach the issue of ‘inclusion’ differently. The paper illustrates the convergence in thinking among various institutional domains of development about the indispensability of inclusive capitalism approaches to bring about socioeconomic development through ICTs.
      PubDate: 2017-03-01
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Open Development in Poor Communities: Opportunities, Tensions, and

    • Authors: Evangelia Berdou
      Abstract: Are the dynamics that underlie commons-based peer production in materially deprived societies the same as those at work in affluent settings? This article contributes to the debate on open development and commons-based peer production by drawing on an in-depth case study of Map Kibera, a popular citizen engagement and citizen mapping project in Nairobi, Kenya. Combining insights from the literature on peer production and participatory development, this examination of the empirical findings focuses on three dimensions of information co-creation: participant motivations, the relationship between product-oriented versus process-oriented views of participation, and the governance of localized global public goods in economically resource-poor settings. This article provides a basis for greater conceptual clarity regarding the dynamics of open development in poor communities and a reconsideration of the appropriateness of a value-driven framework of commons-based peer production in materially deprived settings.

      PubDate: 2017-03-01
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
  • Digital Citizen Engagement: Moving Beyond Conventional Evaluation

    • Authors: Shirin Madon
      PubDate: 2017-03-01
      Issue No: Vol. 13 (2017)
School of Mathematical and Computer Sciences
Heriot-Watt University
Edinburgh, EH14 4AS, UK
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Fax: +00 44 (0)131 4513327
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