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ICT and Digital Divide Printable Version PRINTABLE VERSION
by Sean Amos, Kenya Nov 16, 2007
Technology , Digital Divide   Opinions


The main issue concerning access for young people to ICT is that of the digital divide. As long as this divide persists without being formally addressed by different interested parties, the issues and repercussions stemming from this divide will continue to grow. In addition the birth of this divide between the 'information rich' and 'information poor' people of the world only goes to further accentuate the have and have-nots of the information globalization that is taking place.

Poorer nations do not have the resources to invest in these technologies and have found that blending both new and traditional communication media and technology is still a more viable option in places that lack the infrastructure needed for more elaborate implementation of technology. In the view of many developing nations, ICTs are not just about technologies and their implementation, but more about information transfer and communication.

The rapid spread of Information and Communications Technologies, such as the World Wide Web, e-mail, telephones, fiber optics and satellites is revolutionising the world. The ways in which societies interact, conduct their businesses, compete in international markets and set their economic and human development agendas, all depend on the rapid expansion of the information society.

In the age of Globalisation, access to technology is one of the most critical and controversial subjects surrounding the information society. In many places access is limited or non-existent. Many issues stem from the challenge of increasing access on a global scale. Young people everywhere are faced with the challenge of attempting to broaden their horizons and become global citizens, yet their governments and their infrastructure is not accommodating of this desire and need. Due to financial restrictions, development priorities and cultural differences, access to ICT is still very much a restricted phenomenon for the majority of the world’s population.

The information society has changed the learning, working and social conditions for young people. Barriers once evident through time and space are now blurred and new structures of relationships and modes of interaction have been put in place. Most often it is the younger generations who feel more comfortable using ICT to further expand their knowledge. This allows young people to take charge of their learning processes and seek to learn in the ways that best suit their individual styles, needs and interests. This new wave of ICT savvy young people is leveraging different technologies, both separately and in conjunction with one another, to harness their own skills and enhance their learning by teaching themselves. The information society has provided young people with the tools to explore worlds otherwise unknown to them for personal, academic and vocational purposes.

In a broader scope, ICT enable societies to produce, access, adapt and apply information in greater quantities and for more varied purposes. This application is also done more rapidly and at reduced costs to the implementing party which in turn provides for enormous opportunities to enhance business and economic viability. Furthermore, ICT can contribute towards strengthening democracy and increasing social participation, provided the political and economic will is in place to ensure this type of development.



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Writer Profile
Sean Amos

I am Sean Amos, an empowered Youth who believes that youth have a right to govern and need to govern. Our interests are not taken care of and we are being misused by the politicians in power, by giving us empty promises. We need to get what we deserve.
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