Public access and development: The impacts of public access venues and the benefits of libraries

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Public access and development: The impacts of public access venues and the benefits of libraries

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Title: Public access and development: The impacts of public access venues and the benefits of libraries
Author: Clark, Melody; Sey, Araba; Sullivan, Joe
Abstract: Public access to information and communication technologies (ICTs) can play an important role in development. Communities benefit when people can access information and communicate with experts and people in their social networks to learn about health, jobs, education, leisure activities, or whatever inspires them. When access to ICTs is public and available to everyone in the community, such as in public libraries, telecenters, and cybercafés, it can be an effective tool for those that need it most. This brief describes some of the emerging findings of the Global Impact Study of Public Access to Information & Communication Technologies related to the impact of public access on development, including the unique benefits successful public libraries offer.
Description: The Global Impact Study of Public Access to Information & Communication Technologies is a five-year project (2007-2012) to generate evidence about the scale, character, and impacts of public access to information and communication technologies. Looking at libraries, telecenters, and cybercafes, the study investigates impact in a number of areas, including communication and leisure, culture and language, education, employment and income, governance, and health. Implemented by the University of Washington’s Technology & Social Change Group (TASCHA), the Global Impact Study is part of Investigating the Social & Economic Impact of Public Access to Information & Communication Technologies — a broader CAD$7.9 million research project supported by Canada’s International Development Research Centre (IDRC) and a grant to IDRC from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Managed by IDRC, this project includes the Global Impact Study of Public Access to Information & Communication Technologies (this project) and The Amy Mahan Research Fellowship Program, led by Universitat Pompeu Fabra, which aims to deepen the capacity of emerging scholars with the goal of increasing the quality and quantity of research on public access to ICT produced in developing countries.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1773/20918

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