Importance of development context in ICT4D projects

Amit Prakash (Indian Institute of Management Bangalore, Bangalore, India)
Rahul De' (Indian Institute of Management Bangalore, Bangalore, India)

Information Technology & People

ISSN: 0959-3845

Publication date: 28 August 2007

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to show that the meaning of development influencing the design of ICT for development (ICT4D) projects is important in deciding what purpose they will eventually serve.

Design/methodology/approach

Through a review of the literature on development and technology studies, the paper shows how different meanings of development guide technology usage and policy choice for land reforms. A case study of a land records computerization project in India is used to reinforce this claim.

Findings

By explaining alternative manifestations of interlinkages between development and technology, the paper demonstrates that the design choice, especially the content and service delivery model, for an ICT4D project gets influenced by the development context within which it is set.

Research limitations/implications

The focus of the paper has been restricted to a limited context of information and communication technology usage – to land reforms as a development objective, in a relatively better‐off province of India. Future research will include ICT4D projects in other domains and in different socio‐economic settings.

Practical implications

The findings will encourage ICT4D policy makers and project designers to broaden their perspectives of what constitutes development and explicitly acknowledge the importance of development contexts in influencing the outcomes of ICT4D projects.

Originality/value

Prior research in ICT4D has not looked explicitly at the influence of development contexts in informing technology design. The paper attempts to fill this gap by tracing design choices to the contexts of technology use created through alternative understanding of the objectives of development. This can be of help to researchers looking at issues of technology use for societal development and for policy makers and project designers entrusted with the choice of technology.

Keywords

Citation

Prakash, A. and De', R. (2007), "Importance of development context in ICT4D projects", Information Technology & People, Vol. 20 No. 3, pp. 262-281. https://doi.org/10.1108/09593840710822868

Download as .RIS

Publisher

:

Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2007, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Please note you might not have access to this content

You may be able to access this content by login via Shibboleth, Open Athens or with your Emerald account.
If you would like to contact us about accessing this content, click the button and fill out the form.
To rent this content from Deepdyve, please click the button.