Can the digital divide be contained?

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Use of new information and communication technologies (ICTs) is advancing rapidly, but diffusion patterns are less clear, and change fast. There is grave concern that such rapid, uneven change is further widening the "digital divide" between industrialized and developing countries, and may exacerbate the existing socio-economic divide between them. Based on findings of the ILO's World Employment Report 2001 , this article summarizes the extent of the digital divide, analyses the economic effects of ICT use, and describes fundamental policies underlying successful entry into the information economy of certain developing countries. Finally, some international initiatives promoting "ICTs for development" are considered.

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2001

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