DIGITAL TECHNOLOGIES AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT
Working paper for The Innovation Knowledge Foundation (THINK!)
In this paper, I provide a set of guidelines for the exploration of the academic sphere of ICT4D. Firstly, I propose an operational definition of development, which focuses on empowerment and participation rather than on sheer economic growth. Secondly, I make an argument in favor of the context-based approach to development, which is capable of overcoming the mismatch between generalist theories and on-field reality. Thirdly, I advocate political analysis as preferable to performance evaluation in development, due to its capacity of providing a systemic picture and a long-term view on projects. These guidelines, which should help the reader delving properly in the burgeoning literature on ICT4D, are related, in the conclusion, to the increasingly advocated usage of ICTs in the pursuit of the Millennium Development Goals.