The rapid evolution of the Web from its static beginning to the rich interactive interoperable media platform that it is today indicates that it is likely to be the principal platform for new development for the foreseeable future. It therefore deserves significant attention for its potential in making further significant contributions to assisting poor and underserved individuals and communities throughout the world. As evidenced by the rapid rise of China and India in the high-tech industry, when we imagine a child accessing a web site for the first time in an LDC today, we know that he or she may be tomorrow’s high tech leader in the next BRIC nation. Empowering Poor and Marginalized Populations may serve to stimulate interactions within and across groups who are working on political, economic, health, education, agriculture, trade, and finance issues around the world and will add to the collection of work and actions that bridge the gaps between the public sector, private sector, and civil society.
This book fills a gap in the current store of knowledge by taking a broad view, offering detailed commentary from fourteen experts who are deeply engaged in the field of ICTs for development, many with extensive experience in LDCs, each able to emphasize the key questions, challenges, and successes unique to their field. While these authors speak of the fields with which they are most familiar, much of the commentary is structured in a way that enables the reader to draw parallels across the fields and see where there are similarities in the deployment of ICTs for development and where there are divergences. By taking holistic approach, the book provides a unique body of material for those studying the current state of play across various economic domains.