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The Politics of Access to Information: Exploring the Development of Software Platforms and Communications Hardware in the Digital Age

The Politics of Access to Information: Exploring the Development of Software Platforms and Communications Hardware in the Digital Age
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Author(s): Shefali Virkar (University of Oxford, UK)
Copyright: 2020
Pages: 33
Source title: Information Diffusion Management and Knowledge Sharing: Breakthroughs in Research and Practice
Source Author(s)/Editor(s): Information Resources Management Association (USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-0417-8.ch012

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Abstract

Over the last few decades, unprecedented advances in communications technology have collapsed vast spatial and temporal differences, and made it possible for people to form connections in a manner not thought possible before. Centred chiefly on information, this revolution has transformed the way in which people around the world think, work, share, and communicate. Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) promise a future of a highly interconnected world, wherein action is not limited by physical boundaries, and constrained physical space is replaced by a virtual ‘cyberspace' not subject to traditional hierarchies and power relations. But is the promise of ICTs chimerical? To tackle these issues, central to the global policy debate over the potential development contributions of Information and Communication Technologies, and to examine whether and the extent to which disparities in access to ICTs exist, this book chapter provides a demonstration of the ways in which ICTs may be used as tools to further global economic, social, and political advancement, to shape actor behaviour, and to enhance institutional functioning; particularly in the Third World.

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