In this regular volume of the journal we present eight papers.
In the first paper, Grönlund and Wakabi investigate the connection between the way individuals participate online and offline in authoritarian, low-income regimes, and the nature of eParticipation among citizens in authoritarian regimes such as Uganda. Based on personal interviews with 116 Internet users, the study found that common drivers of eParticipation, such as low cost, security and anonymity are hard to transplant into the offline world for citizens of authoritarian states such as Uganda. Perceived risks of retribution and intimidation for expressing a particular opinion or supporting a political cause mean that citizen-to-citizen participation is the predominant form but still at low levels, while citizen-to-government participation is negligible.
In the second paper, Coelho, Segatto and Frega discuss how the use of ICT can promote more effective development by studying the case of Sudotec (association for technological and industrial development), a non-profit organization that saw in ICT the opportunity to change local scenarios. The results revealed positive effects of the use of ICT in social, economical and cultural spheres, but did not record political impacts.
In the third paper, Anwar and Johanson report on a project which focused on the welfare of blind masseurs in Indonesia, as representatives of three million blind people in that country. The authors illustrate how mobile phones impact on the well-being of blind masseurs. Grounded theory methods are employed for the analysis of 10 interviews with blind masseurs in Makassar and Bandung, Indonesia.
In the fourth paper, Mulalu and Veenendaal paper outlines an approach developed to assist a rural community in Botswana to utilise Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to compile and update a village land parcels dataset. The work is based on a PhD research work which was carried out at a remote rural village, where participatory action research was employed. The PGIS activity itself served mainly to anchor the learning of the creation of the database, the construction of knowledge and its contribution to improve individual household livelihoods. The produced PGIS artifact served to be the sink for all the produced data. The early conclusion that was drawn was that the PGIS serves as an effective instrument to help a rural community to create and construct knowledge and to strike the link with the political institutions that are intended to support citizens to improve their living standards.
In the fifth paper, Kyobe, Namirembe and Shongwe examine the alignment of IT applications with non-technological competencies in South Africa and Uganda. The authors sought to identify those configurations of IT applications and non-technological competencies that result in IT-based competencies needed to ensure competitiveness in e-commerce in the SME sector. 112 SMEs were surveyed and three alignment configurations consisting of SMEs with innovative IT competencies; Operational IT competencies and adaptive IT competencies were revealed. SMEs with innovative IT competencies developed the most IT-based competencies.
In the sixth paper, Dasuki and Abbott draw upon concepts of power and capabilities in order to create an evaluative space (framework) for ICT project assessment. The framework’s utility is illustrated with a case study based on an empirical work in the Nigerian electricity sector. The combined framework and case study contribute to knowledge on the development of theory and informs practice by offering a novel approach to examining ICT-led developmental projects.
In the seventh paper, Kabanda and Brown identify enablers of and barriers to E-Commerce in Tanzanian small and medium enterprises. The study is qualitative in nature and a set of semi-structured interviews with 32 SMEs were used to collect data. Factors perceived to be conducive for E-Commerce, include the availability of business resources, specifically business relationships with ICT foreign companies; top management support; the use of mobile technology for interactive and transactive purposes with consumers and suppliers; and the strategic use of mobile phones to avoid ICT-related challenges such as those associated with fixed line telephone and Internet-enabled desktop computing.
In the eighth paper, Vannini, Rega, Sala and Cantoni investigated ten Mozambican Community Multimedia Centres (CMC) by analyzing Social Representations of users and staff members. Photo-elicitation was employed and a three-step qualitative content analysis was performed on both visual and textual data. The authors highlight neglected dimensions of CMCs, such as the importance of the exterior appearance of the venue, and the perception of a switch in their nature from static centers funded by third parties towards more entrepreneurially-driven ones. The presented research also contributes to the ICT4D field by proposing a promising research protocol, which is able to elicit representations otherwise difficult to obtain.
Table of Contents
In this Volume, the downloads# is the total number of downloads since publication.
|Citizens’ Use of New Media in Authoritarian Regimes: A Case Study of Uganda|
|Åke Grönlund, Wairagala Wakabi||# of downloads: 927|
|Analysing ICT and Development from the Perspective of the Capabilities Approach: A Study in South Brazil|
|Taiane Ritta Coelho, Andréa Paula Segatto, José Roberto Frega||# of downloads: 1028|
|Mobile Phones and the Well-Being of Blind Micro-Entrepreneurs in Indonesia|
|Misita Anwar, Graeme Johanson||# of downloads: 911|
|PGIS Based Land Information Mapping and Map Updating to Support Rural Community Knowledge Building|
|Mulalu I. Mulalu, Bert Veenendaal||# of downloads: 839|
|The Alignment of Information Technology Applications with Non-Technological Competencies of SMEs in Africa|
|Michael Kyobe, Esther Namirembe, Mzwandile Shongwe||# of downloads: 826|
|A Socio-Technical Analysis of ICT Investments in Developing Countries: A Capability Perspective|
|Salihu Dasuki, Pamela Abbott||# of downloads: 940|
|E-Commerce Enablers and Barriers in Tanzanian Small and Medium Enterprises|
|Salah Kabanda, Irwin Brown||# of downloads: 1971|
|Using Photo-Elicitation to Explore Social Representations of Community Multimedia Centers in Mozambique|
|Sara Vannini, Isabella Rega, Simone Sala, Lorenzo Cantoni||# of downloads: 623|