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Home / Stories from the field

Taking eRiding Global - Ric Plaisance

2003-09-07 10:49:26

Similar to their brethren in the United States, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) around the world face challenges in their access to and usage of technology. While this is true in virtually every country, those working in the developing world must routinely grapple with chronic problems, such as viruses, power fluctuations and outages, and lack of proper data backup. Internet connectivity can be a continuous and costly challenge that can render the World Wide Web largely irrelevant, inhibiting access to important knowledge and resources. Hardware and software purchases strain available resources, leading to the use of inferior or jerry-rigged equipment and unlicensed software. Reliable information is often not available in local languages. In some instances, regulatory environments at the national level limit or even repress the use of e-mail and the Internet. The global response to the broad technology needs of societies, communities and development efforts is considerable. The UN, World Bank, and other large, international bodies all address aspects of the digital divide, including access to and usage of appropriate technologies. The large international donor agencies all integrate technology issues to some extent in their development efforts. There are countless initiatives under the Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) banner, working to develop, test, and deploy specific solutions in service to community and economic betterment, health, agriculture, governance, education, and all other sectors of international development. Click here to read the complete article.

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