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The Role of Information and Communication Technology in Rural Socio-Economic Development in Africa

Maxwell C.C. Musingafi

,

Shupikai Zebron

Maxwell C.C. Musingafi 1
Shupikai Zebron 2

  1. Faculty of Applied Social Sciences; Development Studies, Peace, Leadership & Conflict Resolution, Masvingo, ZOU 1

  2. Faculty of Applied Social Sciences; Department of Counselling, Mashonaland West, ZOU 2


Abstract:

In this paper we discuss the role, challenges, and benefits of information and communication technology (ICT) in the rural areas development efforts and processes in Africa. Modern ICT is largely about the capability to electronically input, process, store, output, transmit, and receive data and information. The efficient use of ICT, driven by better high-speed internet (broadband) access, is widely recognised as key to raising productivity and stimulating innovation in the global village. During the last decade, largely due to the spread of mobile phone technology in rural areas, ICTs have demonstrated the positive and significant impact they can have on economic development by improving the business environment in rural areas. ICT provides access to market and business information, brings financial services literally to the hands of rural consumers, helps local communities organise and link themselves, and, through the connection with others, exchange know-how and ideas. ICT plays a significant role in promoting entrepreneurship and economic progress in rural areas, contributing to improve the competitiveness of agriculture and forestry, the quality of life and diversification of the rural economy. High-quality Internet provision helps unlock the potential of rural areas, and thus makes them more attractive places to live. ICT helps existing businesses to perform tasks more effectively and efficiently and respond to their demand for rapid access to diverse kinds of information. 
Contribution/ Originality

Keywords:


Reference:

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