Graz University of Technology
The aim of this investigation is to discuss dangers and opportunities posed by large search engines, particularly Google. This will of course constitute a main part of this write-up. However, in the process of investigations it also became clear that the focus has to be extended, not to just cover Google and search engines in an isolated fashion, but to also cover other Web related phenomena, particularly Wikipedia, Blogs, and other related community efforts. June 2008, pdf format.
The “information society” originally springs up as a conceptual model that intends to account for the profound alterations experienced by industrial society in recent decades, mainly prompted by the technological revolution. Thus, the new informational model is usually regarded as the desired target being unfailingly approached by countries. However, the pace of transition to the information society depends to a large extent on the level of development and wealth of countries, taking into account the stock of knowledge, capacities and infrastructure needed to successfully complete such transition. Therefore, Southern countries fall once again behind the most developed ones, which have begun this transition from a more favourable starting point.
Within this context, the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) comes into existence as a global process that includes the participation of key actors in terms of information and communication issues, such as governments, the private sector and the academy. The Action Plan approved at the first phase of the Geneva Summit has been broadly criticized , mainly by civil society organizations. Among the items criticized there are organization topics (the multistakeholder approach proposed for the Summit’s organization was not taken into account to draw up such Plan) as well as political and ideological aspects. For example, the Geneva Action Plan is criticized for having a way too technical approach, giving priority to issues of access and extension of infrastructure rather than to policies for capacity building; it is also criticized for its lack of applicability when compared to the high diversity of situations registered worldwide. Likewise, it has been analysed that the type of public-private partnerships stipulated in the plan run the risk of minimizing state intervention and the set of public policies needed, thus exclusively promoting free-market based solutions which fail to ensure the achievement of the social development goals desired.
In spite of the above limitations with regards to specific results and notwithstanding the lack of visibility of the Summit if compared to other global instances, it has managed to introduce the issue of information society within national agendas. In this way, national strategies, cyber-strategies or e-strategies become action frameworks that support the construction of the information society in the different regions and countries. At global level, international institutions such as the International Telecommunication Union (ITU), the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the UN ICT Task Force have set precedents in terms of designing and promoting this type of strategies.
One of the outstanding factors related to the success of these strategies is the implementation of multistakeholder work frameworks in the design and application phases, so as to achieve wholesome perspectives based on the comparative views of all actors taking part in the process (including civil society and the private sector). The participation of the private sector in these processes is considered useful and necessary, provided it takes place under state supervision. The “let the private sector do it” policy usually and undesirably results in the extension of infrastructure and connection only to those market zones that are profitable. The information society action plans also have to deal with the liberalization of the telecommunication sector, imposed by international financial institutions in a large number of countries and regions, such as Latin America. The direct consequence of such reforms has been a decrease in regulations concerning the private sector’s actions, which results in the loss of connection between ICTs policies and human rights policies and the promotion of citizen practices.
The fact that the governments of less developed countries usually allocate very few resources for investment on this type of plans should be added to this complex situation. In view of reduced budgets, these plans are placed second with regards to priorities such as health and education. Likewise, most of these countries lack government technical teams trained in these issues, which results in fragmentary and short-rage policies and in the lack of participation in global decision-making instances, such as the WSIS. So, in terms of the design of policies, there is urgent need to consult and include those civil society organizations specialized in information and communication issues, which from their experience are capable of making valuable contributions to the process.
Action plans aimed at approaching the information society should be considered as state policies rather than as peripheral or accessory programmes. The current paradigm is aimed at wholesome programmes, coordinated at a multi-sectoral level and actively incorporated into development agendas, as being the most effective in the transition towards the information society. Emphasis should also be placed on joint regional efforts and regional strategies or plans.
The first phase of WSIS took place in Geneva hosted by the Government of Switzerland from 10 to 12 December 2003, where 175
countries adopted a Declaration of Principles and Plan of Action. The Geneva Plan of Action was intended to translate the
guiding principles of the Declaration into concrete action lines to advance the achievement of the internationally-agreed
development goals by promoting the use of ICTs. PDF format.
The WSIS Stocktaking is intended to fulfill the dual purpose of providing an inventory of activities undertaken by governments and all stakeholders in implementing the Geneva decisions and taking stock of the progress made in building the Information Society. The stocktaking was launched in October 2004 and continues to be updated as a dynamic portal to this rich source of information, open to all.
ITU's E-strategies main goal consists in assisting developing countries in harnessing the potentials of ICT to contribute towards reducing the social divide, improving the quality life, promoting universal access and facilitating entry into the information society. In all actions, take into account the needs of rural, isolated and poorly served areas and people with special needs.
As part of the Summit of the Americas in Quebec City, Canada on April 20-22, 2001, the Heads of State issued a special document focused on Connectivity in the Americas. The Connectivity Agenda for the Americas was created to facilitate the beneficial integration of the hemisphere into an increasingly knowledge-based society.
OSILAC stands for the Observatory for the Information Society in Latin America and the Caribbean. The main objective of OSILAC is to centralize and harmonize data that serve to monitor the status of what is known as the "information society" in the Latin American and Caribbean region. The Observatory provides support for national statistical institutes in compiling indicators on information and communication technologies (ICTs) in the region and in employing the associated methodology
As a response to the information society, the Conference of African Ministers meeting at the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (ECA), in May 1995, adopted the Africa Information Society Initiative (AISI). Driven by critical development imperatives, AISI focuses on priority strategies, programmes and projects, which can help in building African information societies. A key component of the AISI is the development of national e-strategies,or the National Information and Communication Infrastructure
Collaboration on International ICT Policy in East and Southern Africa (CIPESA) is one of two centres established under the Catalysing Access to Information and Communications Technologies in Africa (CATIA) initiative. The overall goals for CIPESA are to develop the capacity of African stakeholders to contribute effectively to international decision-making on ICT and ICT-related products and services, and on the role of ICT in development; and to build multi-stakeholder policy-making capacity in African countries.
APDIP is a UNDP initiative that seeks to promote and establish information technology (IT) for social and economic development throughout Asia-Pacific. Launched in 1997 and based in Kuala Lumpur, the Programme serves 42 countries in a vast region, from Iran in the west, north to Mongolia and south to the Pacific Islands of Fiji.
The ICT Applications Section of ESCAP's Information, Communication and Space Technology Division (ICSTD) promotes the use of ICT that contributes to economic and social development. The Section's activities focus on key applications identified in the Plan of Action of the first phase of WSIS and the Tokyo Declaration such as e-governance, e-business, knowledge sharing, rural ICT services, e-health, distance education, and the section also supports the activities of the Asian and Pacific Centre for Transfer of Technology (APCTT).
The aim of this investigation is to discuss dangers and opportunities posed by large search engines, particularly Google. This will of course constitute a main part of this write-up. However, in the process of investigations it also became clear that the focus has to be extended, not to just cover Google and search engines in an isolated fashion, but to also cover other Web related phenomena, particularly Wikipedia, Blogs, and other related community efforts. September 2007, pdf format.
This article is a call for a "Grand Challenge" project for achieving truly global connectivity. For over a decade, we have hypothesized that the Internet could raise the quality of life in developing nations. But Internet connectivity is still nearly non–existent in rural areas of developing nations, and far below that of developed nations in the urban areas of developing nations.This is not to say the activity of the past decade has been a waste. We have demonstrated the value of the Internet and raised awareness. The United Nations and the administrations of nearly all nations have acknowledged the potential of the Internet. The way has been paved, and it is time to act on what we have learned. After outlining the work of the last decade, we explore one possible Grand Challenge: Connecting every village in the rural developing world to the Internet using a strategy similar to that used in building the NSFNet. (April 2004)
The book is divided into three sections. The first, entitled Affordability and Use, opens with a study on affordability - definitions, analysis and issues. This is followed by two demand side studies, and on a survey of ICT use by SMEs in eight African countries. The second section, Models to Extend Participation in Network Development considers microfinance, smart subsidies, community owned microtelcos and the extension of research networks. The last part elaborates on the information provision and communication practices of regulators - which are important for cultivating informed participation in regulatory processes. It concludes with a case study on the regulatory environment in Guyana. September 2007.
This article has been published following on the Web24Dev conference: "Finding better ways for information sharing and collaboration" at the first conference on Web 2.0 for the development sector, taking place in Rome from 24-26 October 2007. Although a lot still needs to be explored, this article underlines that one thing is certain: there is a strong will to identify ways in which the latest participatory web-based tools, for example Web 2.0, can be used to improve collaboration and share experiences for the benefit of rural development. October 2007.
This paper explains how the modern standards development infrastructure is largely the product of the industrial age, and evolved to address the needs of such an economy. The requirements of a world that is increasingly based upon information and communications technology, however, are far different, and include demands for faster standards development, more vulnerability to uncooperative owners of necessary patent claims, and a greater need for universal, global adoption of core–enabling standards. But the advent of the Internet and the Web, and the continuing introduction of new ICT–based products and services in ever shorter and more frequent product cycles, are exposing the fact that a system that retains strong roots in the nineteenth century is ill–suited to meet the demands of the twenty–first. June 2007.
While “open” normally has connotations of public goods, the idea of “open”–ness has been used for decades as a competitive strategy by firms in the computers and communications industries. Phrases like “open standard,” “open source” and more recently “open innovation” have been used to refer to these strategies. What do they have in common? Which ones really are “open”? What does “open” mean, anyway? This article tries to answer to those questions. June 2004.
The debate on “openness” has tended to focus on standard setting, software copyrights, patent policy and collaborative innovation models. As these issues start to enter onto the mainstream public policy agenda of many countries, moving these ideas from punditry to policies is not obvious. But openness also manifests itself in less visible, more tractable issues such as open access to infrastructure, scientific research and use of public data and information — fundamental elements of “cyberinfrastructure.” The paper concludes by saying that it is important to break down the issues into practical elements that bureaucracies can implement, where metrics can be devised that allow dispassionate economic analysis, where divisive issues can be isolated, and where the stakeholders are not so diverse. June 2007.
Situating Gates’ philanthropy within a critical policy frame, this paper considers two alternatives to Gates’ problem definition of the digital divide, and how knowledge of these might benefit those communities served by public access computing (PAC) services as found in public libraries. The two specific alternatives considered come from the Free Software Foundation (FSF), and Community Informatics (CI). Significantly, both social movements promote the potential of free and open software as an important part of any solution. Finally, the public library literature is reviewed for patterns in the community’s use of FOSS, and the argument is made for its use in the delivery of PAC services. May 2007.
The author of this article argues that the debate over globalization is not about the benefits of the information technology (IT), and opposition to globalization does not mean opposition to technology. Instead, the debate is about the character of globalization – the absence of labor standards, the absence of rules for exchange rates, the implications of outsourcing for workers, and changed power relations that enable corporations to set economic policy and collar productivity gains for their top management and owners.
“WSIS Papers”, a project developed by ITeM (Instituto del Tercer Mundo) and supported by the IDRC (International Development Research Centre), was aimed at contributing to the materialization of an Information Society for the South by supporting well informed decision-making during the second phase of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) process. The briefing papers on the research results of key issues for the World Summit in Tunis are collected in the book "Information Society for the South: Vision or hallucination?". November 2005.
This document is based on the research paper "Building an Information Society in the South: The role of governments and civil society". Upon the guidelines included in the WSIS Declaration of Principles, which are essential to developing the information society, a series of questions are raised: How do we build an inclusive information society to be developed by the different social actors in Southern countries, particularly in Latin America and the Caribbean? What elements should be focusing the efforts of governments, the private sector and civil society? What sources of financing should be encouraged to ensure access and production of technological goods and services? What are the conditions required to assure that multistakeholder participation in building the information society becomes a reality? And essentially, what proposals could be made on these topics in order to contribute to the process of building the information society that will follow the WSIS? This paper addresses these questions and suggests measures to be taken by the different actors in the process.
This document is based on a research paper by the authors. The real issues involved in a systemic approach to ICT for development (ICTD) lies in the realm of political economy. Current ICTD practice in the local contexts in countries of the South has not delivered much more than piecemeal results. ICTD has taken a typical applications-based, quick-fix approach, without a blueprint for systemic change. It is necessary to see the emerging information society in a political economy framework, from the point of view of development. The starting point for this exercise is to create a new theory of ICT for development, or an "information society for the South", that gives the historical, the social and the political sufficient space alongside the economic. It is important that powerful South-South alliances are built, with participation from across sub-national and local governments as well as traditional civil society and grassroots organizations, for evolving a new paradigm of a development-oriented information society for the South.
Actions decided in the WSIS context will take time to be implemented. The financial discrepancy to develop the "information society" in the North and the South is glaring and the extent to which the agreed policies and activities will cover the digital gap between them is questionable. Still, the Arab countries and the South, in general, are cautioned not to be overwhelmed by the challenges and economic inequities. In the interim, in order not to lose critical time, there should be an assessment of what is feasible with the existing human, in-kind and financial resources in the South and, more particularly to this document, the Arab region. This paper focuses on potential supplementary local resources available in the Arab region as a starting point for serious local actions of ICTs for development. From a grassroots perspective, policy discussions are lengthy adding to the fear that the time-lag will exacerbate an already tenuous developmental situation.
While users in the North continue to reap the benefits of the communication development, users in the South are actually falling further behind. In particular, the privatisation of telecom operations in developed countries, combined with the adoption of new technologies, has greatly reduced net financial flows to developing nations. A paper produced by APC (Association for Progressive Communications) proposes some strategies in order to minimize these North-South inequities. PDF format. September 2005.
NICI plans and strategies need to reflect overall development priorities, redefine sectoral policies and support the
introduction of new regulatory framework so as to improve the efficiency and to mobilise resources for building national
information and communication infrastructure. Attempts are made in this paper to assess the ICT situation in African
countries, to outline the pressing need to build-up NICI plans and strategies and the various steps to be taken to enable
countries to be part of the information society.
The term ‘e-strategies’ has gained widespread use over the last few years in the debates on the role of information and
communications technologies (ICTs) for development, following the UN Millennium Declaration in 2000. This paper explores its
meaning in the framework of the WSIS I outcomes. PDF format.
This document forms part of the Digital Opportunity Initiative report "Creating a Development Dynamic". It is focused on the
rol that ICTs must play in national development strategies, and contains descriptions of national ICT approaches on countries
such as Costa Rica, Estonia, India, Malasia, South Africa and Tanzania. PDF format.
This paper explores the need for national strategies for ICT-enabled development. It aims to improve understanding of the
challenges and opportunities of the ICT revolution, and their implications for development policy and strategies. The paper
concludes by outlining the rationale for designing national strategies for e-development and options, objectives and major
thrust for such strategies in support of economic growth, poverty reduction and the MDGs. PDF format.
A discussion paper for the 5th Session of the United Nations ICT Task Force in Geneva, September 12 and 13, 2003. This paper
is about the connection between strategies to reduce poverty and strategies to maximize ICT benefit. It reviews the evolution
of ICT strategies region by region and analyses the connection between e-strategies and poverty reduction strategies.PDF format.
This report assesses the state of national and regional ICT policies,plans and strategies in Africa. It focuses on the role
of ECA (Economic Comission for Africa) and summarizes major regional and global initiatives being undertaken in or relevant
to Africa. It also highlights new applications and initiatives in key sectors,and concludes with lessons learned and the way forward. PDF format.
This publication provides a comparative study of ICT policies and e-strategies of nine Asian countries - India, Japan,
Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Nepal, Philippines, Singapore, Sri Lanka and Vietnam. It identifies and analyzes the strengths,
weaknesses, similarities and gaps in policy formulation in Asia. PDF format.
This book has three distinct areas of focus: an analytical overview of the ICT policies and e-strategies in the region,
fundamentals of policy formulation and the development process, and thematic priority areas to be addressed in the
conceptualization and development of policies. PDF format.
The global digital divide between North and South is undoubtedly significant. But it is also overestimated.Why? Because most digital divide statistics implicitly think of the divide in Northern terms that equate use with ownership, and access with use. This short paper explains this view. November 2005.
This paper discusses the development of the Internet in Mexico within the context of the digital divide. There is skepticism about whether the digital divide is something driven primarily by technology rather than an epiphenomenon driven by socioeconomic factors. The barriers to access are not technological but rather economic and historical. Although Mexico shows wide disparities in Internet access, it also shows rapid development toward more access. The number of regular Internet users in Mexico is small (about 14 million) but has shown consistent growth. Business and non–governmental organization presence on the Web is increasing, and the Mexican government is innovatively using the Web to broaden contact with its citizens. In the Mexican case, there is certainly evidence of a digital divide. Nevertheless, there is also ample evidence of digital development. (March 2006)
A huge industry has been created responding to the perceived social malady, the "Digital Divide". This paper examines the concepts and strategies underlying the notion of the Digital Divide and concludes that it is little more than a marketing campaign for Internet service providers. The paper goes on to present an alternative approach — that of "effective use" — drawn from community informatics theory which recognizes that the Internet is not simply a source of information, but also a fundamental tool in the new digital economy. (December 2003)
The article considers that the conceptual framework of the digital divide is limiting. The language of the digital divide not only places people into simplistic “have”/“have not” categories, making assumptions about the solution to “information poverty” with little attention to local contexts, its logic also continues a paradigm of development that engages with the global south only at the point of what it “lacks”. The author proposes a framework, which provides a wider, and more nuanced, lens to look through. It focuses work in ways and in areas consistently overlooked by the digital divide, particularly on the realities, voices, and complexities within its unconnected, “have not” spaces — the zones of silence. (May 2006)
New information and communication technologies are seen as a potent source of advancement for many countries in Africa, Asia and Latin America and have increasingly featured as topics of discussion in international fora. Who benefits from the rapid rise of this issue on the international agenda? This article argues that the promotion of the digital divide as a policy issue benefits four major groups: information capital, developing country governments, the development "industry," and global civil society. (August 2004)
This interesting paper produced by DigitalDivide.org summarize in three phases the history of the Digital Divide during last decade. From the introduction: "To understand the new opportunities to close the digital divide, let's consider how governments and the private sector evolved as they attempted to grapple with this issue." September 2007.
Training communities to set up wireless internet access points using empty tin cans, “taking back the tech!” to combat violence against women and keeping the focus of the world's governments on the importance of affordable internet access. These are some of the activities the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) did in 2006. (PDF). Agosto 2007.
The rise of women as key players in the Arab Gulf communication strategies: It is the kind of mind-blowing civilizational shift happening in the Arab world where men are finally embarking on becoming skilled digital nomads instead of crying about the frontiers' collapse and dreaming of harems for their wives - that I tried to share with the Spanish journalists obsessed by the veil and terrorism during my Madrid encounter in May 2005.
This text was written within the framework of the Project entitled "Civilian Organisations in the face of National ICT
Projects: 4 case studies" which ITDG carried out with the support of the IDRC. This project was implemented between December
2002 and June 2004 and included visits to 4 Latin American countries (Peru, Uruguay, Venezuela and El Salvador), as well as
interviews with government representatives and civilian organizations. Is it possible to refer to the information society
without the participation of the civil society? How can the 'information society' be understood within a poverty context?
What approaches can be used to explain the role to be played by the civil society with other stakeholders of the information
society? Those questions guided this research. PDF format.
Access to information and communications technologies (ICTs) is expanding but the majority of people in developing countries
are still excluded, says APC. APC and the CRIS Campaign have been following the WSIS process and their publication "Involving
Civil Society in ICT Policy: the World Summit on the Information Society" highlights some of the main issues at stake. PDF format.
The ICT Policy for Civil Society training course builds the capacity of civil society organisations to understand policy and
regulation related to information and communication technologies (ICT) so that they can begin to engage and influence policy
processes affecting ICT adoption and implementation at national, regional and global levels.
This report describes a partnership building process between the Cameroonian government, private sector and CSOs in an effort
to build the ICT sector in response to government's perceived failure to do so. It emphasizes the role of civil society in
the formulation of national ICT policy and strategies and the creation of an enabling environment for ICT sector growth. PDF
Egypt's CSO sector is active and far reaching, however despite the increase in the number of users, and the fact that
Internet policy and regulation is becoming an issue, although only a tiny minority of activists work in this area. Recent
lobbying on the newest communication bill is an encouraging sign that representatives of civil society are waking up to the
fact that civil society much stake a claim in ICT policy formulation processes. PDF format.
This paper presents the case of civil society organizations in Ethiopia and discusses how their involvement in ICT policy
process can be improved. Although recent initiatives by the Federal Government in modernizing its ICT policies and the
opening up the telecommunication sector present windows of opportunities for the civil society to participate in the policy
process, the inherent weakness of the civil society due to the spread of its efforts along dozens priorities aimed at
responding to the on-going social and economic crisis in the country makes the participation in ICT policy process rather
difficult. PDF format.
The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA) organized the Second Western Asia Preparatory Conference for the WSIS to follow up on the first phase of WSIS held in Geneva (2003) and to prepare for its second phase in Tunis (2005). The Conference, held in Damascus, Siria, from 22-24 November 2004 was held in collaboration with international and regional organizations and prominent private sector institutions. It reviewed the latest actions taken in member countries to reduce the digital divide in light of the WSIS-Phase 1 outcome and agreed on a regional plan of action with specific projects, leading to strategic partnerships for their implementation. PDF format.
Approved in the Latin America and Caribbean Regional Conference, held in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 8-10 June 2005, eLAC 2007 is a regional Plan of Action for public policy. It aims to provide some middle ground between the ambitious aims of the global community and the needs associated with actual conditions in the Latin American and Caribbean countries. The adoption of concerted measures agreed upon at the regional level is intended to strengthen national strategies and enable the digital revolution to make a positive contribution to integration in the region. PDF format.
The High Level Asia-Pacific Conference for the World Summit on the Information Society was held in Tehran from 31 May to 2 June 2005, jointly organized by the Government of the Islamic Republic of Iran, UNESCAP, UNDP-APDIP, ITU. The Conference adopted the Tehran Declaration and the Regional Action Plan towards the Information Society for Asia and the Pacific and discussed follow up and implementation strategies/activities. PDF format.
The African Regional Preparatory Conference for the WSIS was held from 2-4 February, in Accra, Ghana, with the theme "Access - Africa’s key to an inclusive Information Society". It aimed at preparing Africa for an effective participation in the second phase of the WSIS and ensuring a strategic and interdependent digital partnership that would promote economic growth and human development of the continent. PDF format.
Information and communications technologies (ICT) have had uneven deployment both between nations and within nations. These differences in the use of ICT and the Internet are part of the “digital divide”, an uneven distribution of information and communications technologies and the benefits that accrue from their use. This article examines electronic initiatives to improve implementation of ICT throughout the world and proposes a multi–level national electronic initiative framework (NEIF) including fundamental guiding doctrines, general directives, specific domain areas of activity, and finally deliverables. This framework can serve as a guide to national and NGO (non–governmental) organizations to improve access and utilization of ICT and reduce the digital divide. (May 2006)
The main purpose of the Brazilian Information Society Program is to establish the foundations of a nationwide strategic project to integrate and coordinate the development and employment of advanced computer, communication and information technologies and their applications in society. This endeavor will allow the government to further research and education, as well as assure that the Brazilian economy is capable of competing on the world market. PDF format.
To help Azerbaijan in harnessing the potential of information communication technologies (ICT) for meeting the country's development goals primarily through assistance in preparation and initial implementation of a national strategy aimed to "Bridge the Digital Divide" and through facilitating the development of the country's ICT sector.
The National ICT Policy and Plan Development Committee set up by the Ghana Government is tasked to develop an ICT-led Socio-Economic Development Policy and the corresponding Plan on the basis of an extensive national consultative exercise.
Development was set up by the Prime Minister's Office on May 22, 1998, under the Chairmanship of the Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission. This taskforce had a mandate to formulate the draft of a National Informatics Policy. A special website was designed to make the evolution of the Policy transparent. The Task Force has submitted its reports, including a IT Action Plan, which can be found online at this website.
In 1999, the Ministry of Information Technology (MIT) was established in India to facilitate all initiatives in the IT
sector. The Ministry was then merged with the Communications Ministry to form the Ministry of Communication and Information
Technology (MCIT). Currently the Department of Information Technology (DIT), under the MCIT, works as the nodal agency for
Information Technology. The Department of Telecommunications and Department of Posts are the two other key departments under
the MCIT. An "action taken" report and a Ministerial "Ten Point Agenda", set up in May 2004, can be found here among other
important information about India's ICT policies and priorities.
This document endeavors to provide a scheme for achieving social and economic progress by utilizing Information and
Communications Technology (ICT) as a developmental vehicle. It strives to include all sectors of the economy in a skillfully
designed plan. PDF format.
In 1994, the National Information Technology Council (NITC) was created and designated as the central policy body on IT
matters in the country. Four years later in 1998, the Electronic Commerce Promotion Council (ECPC) was created to be the
coordinating body of public-private partnerships for the promotion and development of e-commerce. In July 2000, NITC and the
ECPC were merged, coinciding with the approval of the Government Information Systems Plan (GISP). The merger resulted in the
Information Technology and Electronic Commerce Council (ITECC).
IT21 documents our common vision and presents our nation’s broad strategy to spur our country to global competitiveness
through information technology. It sets down specific time frames for achieving these goals.
SAITIS is a bilateral project between the South African government, represented by the Department of Trade and Industry, and
the Canadian Government represented by the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA). The purpose of this project is
to further the development of the ICT Sector in South Africa. The strategy is intended to be complementary to and supportive
of broader socio-economic development goals of the government of South Africa, particularly with regard to its emphasis on
social upliftment and empowerment.
The Tanzania Development Vision 2025 envisages a nation imbued with five main attributes: high quality livelihood; peace,
stability and unity; good governance; a well educated and learning society; and a strong and competitive economy capable of
producing sustainable growth and shared benefits. On the other hand, this Policy has articulated ten main focus areas in
harnessing ICT in Tanzania which include strategic ICT leadership; ICT infrastructure; ICT Industry; Human Capital; Legal and
Regulatory Framework; Productive Sectors; Service Sectors; Public Service; Local Content; and Universal Access. PDF format.
Trinidad and Tobago's fastforward agenda is all about transforming the country into a knowledge-based society by 2008.
Government working with the public and private sectors, has produced an exciting roadmap that charts a clear and determined
course to an online society and a knowledge-based economy. fastforward provides farreaching strategies for the development of
a connected country that will adapt, flourish and prosper in the new global information society.
In order for developments in the ICT sector to be addressed systematically, the Uganda government has formulated an ICT
Policy Framework. The scope of this Policy covers information as a resource for development, mechanisms for accessing
information, and ICT as an industry, including e-business, software development and manufacturing. The policy looks at
various categories of information from different sectors, essentially aimed at empowering people to improve their living
Latin American and Caribbean Zone arrived to the Internet as a new tool for support and save money and time, into NGOs, community and social organizations. Those new process suppose too many changes in ways that people express and think problems as connectivity and appropriation to the new tech. The real thing is that again too many ephifanies from neoliberal and unique thought model: out markets exist is growing a new stage for hope and fight against poverty and exclussion. The networks for solidarity are changing the face and perception about cultural, scientific and political activism, not only for richest inhabitants to the elites urban sector... inclusive for too many indigenous and very poor countries as Haiti, Dominican Republic, Nicaragua or Bolivia. What kind of uses and benefits had find associations, community groups and academic institutions in Latin America and Caribbean Zone for Internet? What kind of perceptions are changing during 1998-2001? Why is so important for sustainable development still fighting for MISTICA community and their efforts for create one independent vision into those questions? 2001.
This book examines the problem of inadequate access to information and communication technology (ICT) and the need to develop appropriate pro-poor ICT policies within the Latin American and Caribbean context. It reveals that, while market reforms have led to infrastructure investments and service expansion, they have failed to ensure that the benefits of the Information Society spread across the many social and economic divides that characterise the region. The authors suggest that a new set of policy reforms are needed, which build on the achievements of market liberalisation efforts, but at the same time address the realities of digital poverty – a concept that seeks to grasp the multiple dimensions of inadequate levels of access to ICT services by people and organizations, as well as the barriers to their productive use. August 2007.
eLAC2007 is the 2005-2007 Regional Plan of Action on the Information Society for Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC). It is an agenda regionally arranged around the importance of the Technologies of Information and Communication (TIC) for the social and economic development of the region. The plan includes 30 thematic areas and 70 short-term activities. It is designed to foster long-range implementation of the Plan of Action of the World Summit on the Information Society (2003-2005), which was formulated in the framework of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). It is a tool of mediation between the needs of the countries of the region and the pace of world development, aimed at facilitating regional cooperation and sharing of best practices, creating economies of scale, and reducing costs in time and learning involved in the adoption of ICTs. October 2007.
This document is based on the research paper "Visions of the information and knowledge society: The process in Latin America and the Caribbean". The documents stemming from the global and regional debates within the framework of the WSIS reflect different concepts regarding the process of consolidation of an "information society". These approaches and views have direct implication in the design and implementation of policies. The current trend tends to group Southern countries on the periphery or, directly, towards exclusion, so they should build their own development strategies, based on their needs and realities. Within the world scenario, Latin America shows cohabitation between sectors integrated into global power networks, others that are slowly reaching some of the advantages of technological progress and wide excluded sectors. This paper explores the possibilities of Latin American countries to become reinserted into the global economic structure by considering alternatives that could be undertaken for a strategic development of the information and knowledge society in the region.
Set of documents focusing on the routes made by Latin America and the Caribbean towards the information society. Alternatives
are proposed for the design of national strategies to be adopted by the countries of the region, in order to ensure the
success of this transition.
This document is the third version of an ongoing exercise to benchmark the Plan of Action of the World Summit on the
Information Society (WSIS). Graphs and tables are indicative and aim at demonstrating the current situation of Latin America
and the Caribbean countries in relation to achieving the actions proposed during the 2003 Geneva phase of WSIS. Conslusions
are drawn from the presented evidence in every field, which results in the particular challenges the region faces in the
transition toward a Latin American and Caribbean Information Society. PDF format.
This report is the main output of the meeting "Public Policy and Information and Communications Technologies for Social
Transformation in Latin America and the Caribbean," held in San José, Costa Rica, organised by the PAN Americas program of
the International Development Research Centre (IDRC). The job of this report is to pull out some of the main lessons learned
from the workshop, and areas that were identified for further exploration and research. PDF format.
This is the final of three reports comprising the output of the Consulting Services in Information & Communication Technology
project. It presents the results of the regional and national consultations and lists a set of recommendations for the
proposed ICT Policy for the OECS (Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States) region. PDF format.