This article notes how, despite the explosion of mobile phone and internet users throughout the private sector, the governments of these developing countries have yet to fully embrace new technological opportunities. If they were to reevaluate their limited use of technology, they may be able to provide more consistent goods and services. The World Bank had the an internal evaluation done and the results were quite transparent. Despite funding and pressure on policy makers, there was little to no change in mobile provider’s expansion into poorer, more rural, and under-served regions of developing countries. More specifically, “targeted efforts to increase access beyond what was commercially viable have been largely unsuccessful.” According to the report, there have been successes in other areas concerning ICT4D projects funded by the World Bank, however, universal access is where we see failure rates as high as 70%. Despite this being a seemingly bad thing, there is also a silver lining. A 30% success rate is not bad when the World Bank is dealing with developing nations, ones that probably have bigger concerns the mobile phones, such as corruption or disease. Because of the World Bank’s transparency in its self-evaluation, this enables open discussion about alternatives and what clearly, doesn’t seem to be working. This high failure rate also makes an incredibly strong case against a one-size-fits-all approach.This is similar to the argument that Heek’s makes in his article about the Millennium Development Goals, about how they are too top-down and too “cookie cutter” to have the same impact in each country. Countries need to be able to tailor projects and goals to what is most applicable for them, their needs, and their priorities. I believe that the actions of the World Bank set a very good precedent for any organizations that wants to take on an ICT project.
21 September 2012
The World Bank’s Role in ICT4D and Transparency
This entry was posted on Friday, September 21st, 2012 at 12:13 am and tagged with Evaluation, government involvement, high failure rates, self-reporting, transparency, universal access, World Bank and posted in IDEV & ICT Resources, Rural Development. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.
One response to “The World Bank’s Role in ICT4D and Transparency”
- RT @gentile_orjulia: “@gatesfoundation: Why banks can, and should, take on the "unbanked": Video interview with @BillGates: http://t.co/6mu… 2 years ago
- Good intentions alone can mean a faulty foundation for #development. Check out our classmate's perspective: tulaneict4d.wordpress.com/2014/04/30/les… #ICT4D 3 years ago
- @AgroamCommunity how interesting! Is equity #access available to most agricultural partners in your communities? #ICT4D 3 years ago
- @wayan_vota Wow! Know of any similar projects or plans to continue/extend this trial? #ICT4D #SMS #literacy 3 years ago
- @melindagates What programs/organizations are combating deadly #mosquitoes? Which are most successful and what are the benefits? #IDEV 3 years ago
- #Internet Africa agriculture Arab Spring bangladesh brazil China Communication computers corruption crowdsourcing Cyber Security Cybersecurity development digital divide disaster relief disaster response disasters e-government e-learning education Facebook failure Failures in ICT4D gender ghana GIS google government Haiti Health healthcare ICT ICT4D ICT4D Professional ICT policy ICTs India infrastructure internet ITU Kenya kony 2012 mapping MDGs mHealth mobile Mobile Phones mobiles mobile technology Nigeria OLPC One Laptop Per Child Peru Poverty Radio Richard Heeks rural development Rwanda SMS Social Media South Africa sustainability Tanzania technology Telecommunications telemedicine Twitter Uganda UN United States Ushahidi women World Bank YouTube
- 81,392 hits