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This report investigates the extent to which the expansion of mobile telephony is likely to lead to the expansion of access to appropriate financial services in developing countries, especially Africa. In particular, it seeks to answer two main questions:
To answer these questions, the report investigates emerging models and trajectories of development in m-payments and m-banking through interviews with emerging African providers and the use of secondary material. It assesses the policy and regulatory elements of an enabling environment for this sector based in part on the analysis of circumstances in two pilot African countries (Kenya and South Africa).
The paper looks at some of the following areas:
The paper finds that:
The author finds that employment in the IT industry has decreased the time available to women for house work, but that their responsibility for these tasks has not diminished. There is comparatively little change in women’s labour at home. This shows that there is no change in the gender-based division of labour, but only a shift of responsibility from professional women to women workers at the lower end.
There is, however, an undeniable improvement in the social mobility and work participation rate of women in the IT industry. The nature of work, the tools and the individualisation of capacities required by information technology make women more capable to take decisions on their own and construct greater scope to enhance their agency.
IT does, therefore, constitute the basis of the redefinition of traditional gender norms and supports a medium of information, understanding and knowledge in which women’s interests, opinions and rights are taken into account. Nevertheless, they are restricted by the dominant interests of the market and the state, which provides a non – threatening mobilisation of women’s labour for the benefit of their families and communities.
This document was designed for use at the GTAP Short Course held in August 2003 at Purdue University. It can also be used after the course by participants in conjunction with the RunGTAP and GEMPACK software they take home with them from the course. And, with certain limitations, this document will also be very useful to others learning to use RunGTAP. [author]
The papers are:
The issues being considered central to this debate are:
This conference was held in aid of the Women and Development Unit of ECLAC’s project, "Institutionalisation of gender policies within ECLAC and sectoral ministries". The objective of this project is to strengthen technical policies, strategies, tools and capacities, both within ECLAC and in selected countries of the region,in order to encourage equity between men and women in the process and benefits of development, especially with regard to economic and labour policies.
This paper finds:
Comparing users in Japan and the rest of Asia, the survey indicated:
The authors also make several suggestions for encouraging FLOSS development, particularly in Japan:
This study is based on data from interviews and conversations with developers from a variety of projects, other persons close to the field, and from analyses of project Web sites and other online resources, a monitoring of selected mailing lists, observations on various fairs and conferences and examining the existing literature.
Empirical findings from this study include:
The author concludes that the concepts of community, social group, organisation, social movement, subculture, and social world can all be used to better understand FLOSS as a social formation.
The author recognises and cautions that this text is meant as a starting point for further study and discussion, so its findings largely are hypothetical.
The pilot project is the result of a regional workshop held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, in 2001, were delegates decided to implement new information and communication technologies to aid local pastoralists.
The report details the technology deployed, including the cyber shepherd internet site, offering maps showing which sites are occupied and which have green vegetation, together with an estimated carrying capacity, indicating the number of animals that can be pastured there without risk to the environment and its resources. The internet site devotes pages to ways of recognising and dealing with animal diseases. In addition, technology such as cell phones and global positioning systems track and monitor the course followed by selected shepherds and their flocks from one point to another, in the forestry-pasture zone.
The report notes that the success of pilot projects such as in Senegal, will provide useful feedback to implement likeminded schemes elsewhere in Africa.
The author notes that there is considerable variation in the degree to which economies and enterprises have reallocated their resources, restructured their businesses and successfully applied available technological improvements during transition.
With restructuring more successful in some countries than in others, the issue that the paper investigates is to what extent such divergence relates to policies, incentives and conditions and what the determinants of knowledge based restructuring are. Reforms are sought to increase competition, to harden firms’ budget constraints or to improve business environment; the author explores whether success with such reforms reduces the need for developed ICT infrastructure, or rather, whether ICT represents an indispensable condition for the second stage of restructuring in transition economies.
Major results of the study are:
Based on the empirical results, the author observes that better communication and information technologies will be more and more important, as the other variables - such as market pressure, hard budget constraint, and dominance of private ownership - are becoming features of all transition economies.
The author concludes that ICT provides a unique opportunity to the whole real sector to restructure faster and more efficiently. The reason for that is that ICT decreases transaction costs, and as the majority of enterprises enter into the second phase of restructuring, the importance of ICT infrastructure will be more apparent.
This report on the activities of the recently established Digital Inclusion Panel, this report provides an overview of the current state of digital engagement in the United Kingdom. The report specifically examines:
The authors conclude that while digital engagement has increased markedly in the UK in the last several years, several population groups remain at risk for digital exclusion, including:
Other key recommendations include:
[adapted from author]
The paper looks at large IT firms and firms in high-end niche areas, and notes that they are proactively seeking IP based growth strategies. While they typically seek IP protection in western nations and not so much in India, this has led them to perceive restrictive IP regimes more positively. The paper notes that IP regimes in the west are more relevant for IP creating Indian IT firms today but this may change in the near future as Indian market expands. Significant IP creation by MNC subsidiaries in India is also contributing to this change in perception.
The paper argues that survey data show that an average IT firm in India also perceives IP protection as an important appropriability mechanism, but access to markets and relevant complementary assets continue to be more important for appropriating profits from their economic activity. A positive view of the restrictive IP regimes also gets reflected in the demands of Indian industry associations for changes in the Indian law.
Broadly, these changes in perceptions seem to be linked to the evolving global production networks, changing activity profile of Indian IT firms, emerging business opportunities and changes in the competitive scenario.
The paper concludes by suggesting that the understanding of Indian IT firms of the complexities of IP regimes remains rudimentary and they will need significant preparation to deal with these IP related challenges. Although Indian private and public entities are gearing up for IP creation and protection, they still have a long way to go.
The last part of the paper provides an overview of NEPAD’s approach to the ICT agenda, arguiing that:
The phenomenal growth of computer and communication technologies, or ICT, has brought great benefits attached with some risks. Some of the negative risks which have emerged include the cooption of technology by terrorist organisations for use in their nefarious activities. ICT has also greatly facilitated cultural invasions, resulting in real or imagined resentments and revulsions, which this paper argues is one of the many causes of international terrorism.
This paper argues that ICT is exploited by the terrorist organisations in two ways, both as a tool and as a target of attack. Used as a tool, communications are used in support of operations providing for command and control of activities. Terrorists can also operate in cyberspace to destroy or manipulate information for their own purpose. There are numerous known cases of exploitation of ICT by terrorist organizations, both, globally as well as in India.
This paper studies the past patterns of exploitation of ICT by domestic and international terrorists to predict the future eventualities so that they can adopt preventive measures in a pro-active manner.
Counter measures are suggested by the author, and these include the following initiatives:
The paper concludes by suggesting that terrorists are usually a step ahead of the government agencies in making use of the latest technical gadgetry for their own purposes, be it for communications or information collection. However, the author argues that it must be recognised that the same science and technology which gives such a dreadful capability in the hands of terrorists, will also provide the means for defeating the terrorists' designs, provided governments remain alert and learn the ‘new rules of the game’.
The research questions were tested with a sample of over 8,000 active participants, and over 30,000 messages, taken from groups formed by users of an LMS (Learning Management System) in a university.
It finds that the social network resulting from discussion groups is indeed a Scale Free Network, based on In, Out and All Degree distributions. For the same sample, discussion groups are a Small World Network too. As expected, the clustering coefficients for these groups differ significantly from random networks, while their characteristic path lengths are similar to random networks.
Implications of the topology for the design and understanding of discussion groups include the stability and control of such groups, as well as their longevity.
It finds that progress is being made, albeit at an incremental pace. Governments are showing steady progress on several important dimensions, but not major leaps forward. On several key indicators, e-government performance is edging up. However, movement forward has not been more extensive in some areas because budget, bureaucratic, and institutional forces have limited the extent to which the public sector has incorporated technology into their mission.
Findings of the research include:
The report includes statistical tables rating each country against a range of criteria
It looks at 2 aspects of the internet’s influence on advocacy communities:
It argues that the internet is transforming both the boundaries and the structure of gender equality organizing, definitively enhancing current political vibrancy, but adding further challenges to long-standing disputes:
The findings of the report include:
This study concludes that teachers and schools in poor environments can benefit from the many advantages that ICT is currently affording richer peers, whilst leap-frogging expensive mistakes made by more developed countries. It identifies four key policy implications:
[adapted from author]
The author recommends that health professionals be ready to confront the rapid spread of misinformation which the internet makes possible. He outlines key areas of health communication where ICTs could be applied. These include: dissemination of information from community health workers to policy-makers; distance learning for field workers; and advocacy and mobilisation via the internet with SMS back-up for offline activities. He also suggests integrating new technologies into existing low-tech (radio or telephone-based) health communications for maximum impact. [adapted from author]
The report includes a list of indicators for measuring gender awareness in project design and implementation
It argues that the main impact of knowledge societies on the public sphere will be determined by the ‘supply’ and ‘demand’ for electronic political information and communications. Demand is heavily dependent upon the social characteristics of Internet users and their prior political orientations.
The study predicts that the primary impact of knowledge societies will be in facilitating cause-oriented and civic forms of activism. The primary beneficiaries are expected to be new social movements, transnational advocacy networks, alternative social movements, protest organizations, community activists and development workers, who are often concerned with issues such as the environment, international development, anti-war or anti-globalization, and single issue causes from all shades of the political spectrum, ranging from genetically modified food and anti-fuel taxes to animal rights and anti-sweat shops.
There will be less impact on conventional channels of participation, such as by voting and campaigning.
The report uses survey data drawn from the 19-nation European Social Survey, 2002, and looks at UK case studies assessing the effect of remote electronic voting in elections
The author argues that:
Over the last decade developed countries have experienced a transformation in the scope and reach of information technologies and infrastructures. However, this digital revolution has been slow to materialise in developing countries, further marginalising them and creating a digital divide. The case study calls for innovative ways to leverage these new technologies for a range of development opportunities in the HIV/AIDS field, from distance learning to bringing basic HIV/AIDS prevention information to patients and practitioners. It concludes that, harnessed to their full potential, basic e-mail and internet facilities can serve as powerful tools in the prevention of HIV/AIDS in South East Asia. [adapted from author]
The US technological leadership rests in part upon the continued position of the US as the primary destination for highly trained and skilled scientists and engineers from the world over. Though this is likely to persist for some time the increasing attractiveness of foreign emerging economy destinations is a long-term concern for continued U.S. technological leadership. [author]
[This working paper is available free over the internet to readers in most developing or transition countries; if your internet connection does not automatically identify you as linking from one of these countries, you will be asked to fill in a registration form first. For those in other countries, either a series subscription or the purchase of individual reports is necessary.]
[Please note: this article is accessible online, free of charge to residents of nearly any developing country or transition economy, whose internet-access address can be automatically recognised by the NBER website. If you are in a developing country/transition and still have access problems, email firstname.lastname@example.org for support]
This case study collection includes an introduction and four specialized case studies covering:
This paper suggests alternative conceptualisations of these concepts.
A conference presentation: a later revised version was published in: Krishna, S. and S. Madon, eds. 2003. The digital challenge.
The study debunks three failed assumptions:
The report concludes that the rush to E-learning produced more capacity than any rational analysis would have said was needed. In a fundamental way, the boom-bust cycle in E-learning stemmed from an attempt to compress the process of innovation itself. The entrepreneurs’ enthusiasm produced too many new ventures pushing too many untested products: products that, in their initial form, turned out not to deliver as much value as promised. E-learning took off before people really knew how to use it: E-learning will become pervasive only when faculty change how they teach, not before.
The articles collected here give readers a glimpse of the powerful transformative force ICT can be when deployed wisely. [author]
The report looks at:
The report recommends:
Areas for future research include:
[adapted from author]
Gender-based issues and trends in ICT applications in education in Asia and the Pacific are explored, and examples of how ICTs can increase access to and improve the quality of learning experiences for girls and women, including in non-formal education, are provided. Trends in strategies, including gender mainstreaming and the engendering of ICT and education policies, are discussed.
The report also includes the collection of the ICT in education country papers, grouped by sub-regions.
Special attention is paid to:
[adapted from author]
The report includes:
If Open Source software wishes to become widely used and embraced by the general public, all five of these issues will have to be overcome. [author]
The study describes the organisation of each project; discusses the types of farmers involved and assesses their utilisation of the services; and looks at the backgrounds and performance of the functionaries who manage the projects. The projects studied varied with respect to the type of services provided, but these included marketing information, extension advice, information about rural development programmes, and other information from government and private sources.
Research findings include:
Policy implications include: