Transforming Digital Divide into Digital Dividend: The Role of South-South Cooperation in ICTs

AbstractThis paper argues that the present approach, which aims at proliferating the use of ICTs in developing countries, by neglecting its production, is likely to perpetuate technological dependence of the South. Hence the e-strategies and policies in the South need to integrate both production and use. In this process much could be gained by South-South cooperation because, unlike the earlier general-purpose technologies, in case of ICTs substantial capabilities exist in the South. While there are certain initiatives at the regional and bilateral level to foster cooperation, the paper calls for an e-South Framework Agreement to facilitate a broad based approach to pool the resources such that economies of scale and scope are achieved and risks minimized.