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E-Democracy and E-Economy in Africa

E-Democracy and E-Economy in Africa
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Author(s): Sirkku K. Hellsten (University of Birmingham, UK)
Copyright: 2008
Pages: 8
Source title: Electronic Government: Concepts, Methodologies, Tools, and Applications
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Ari-Veikko Anttiroiko (University of Tampere, Finland)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-947-2.ch279

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Abstract

A new world governance and economy characterised by globalisation has an increasing emphasis on knowledge and knowledge-transfer as the primary driver of economic growth, competitiveness, and participation. The economic, social, and political landscape in which future development will take place has then also changed. All countries, rich and poor, must now reconsider their approach to development to incorporate this new reality. Opportunities exist for poor countries to use information and communication technologies (ICT) to make rapid advances in their economic and political development, but there are also risks that a digital divide might widen the inequality between the “have’s” and “have not’s” across the world. This article focuses on the role of ICT and the development of e-democracy and e-economy in Africa. The chapter will discuss the prospects and problems in enhancing e-democracy and e-economy in Africa by examining global and local obstacles to the access and use of ICT in many African countries. It also discusses whether ICT can empower people locally and regionally to participate more actively in politics, public affairs and economics.

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