ICT4D Does Work

I think one of the most valuable and important lesson in ICT4D is that this type of developmental route can work. When I initially approached the concepts of ICT4D, I had serious doubts on how such ICT programs can be utilized for development. I thought that when it comes down to it, a developing country is going to need fresh water way more than they are going to need cellphone coverage in their village. But then I realized that it wasn’t about installing ICT structures and promoting modernization through them, but ICT4D is utilizing technologies that have already been adapted into developing nations, and promoting growth through them. Such projects like mBanking and Open Street Maps have successfully implemented change in developing countries, and through the harnessing of such technologies, countries can develop at a quicker rate.

That being said, there are still a lot of ways for ICT4D projects to fail, and failing to adapt projects to local communities proves to be the biggest downfall. Programs such as mBanking in Kenya and the use of mobile phones for fishing markets in India were such a success because they molded their projects around their target community. ICT projects assist in development when they are able to build off of a sound foundation of ICTs. Because so many ICT projects fail to address this common issue, they struggle to reach their goals and give ICT4D a bad name. However, the successes of former projects who have worked with the developing nations instead of just hoping for the best, prove that ICT4D does work.

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