Towards a theoretical framework on ethical practice in ICT4D programmes
Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) are widely known as tools for poverty reduction. However, before ICTs can be utilized as tools for development, one needs to assess the various development challenges facing a country and then analyse where and how ICTs could positively impact development in a sustainable way. As technology influences the way people relate toward each other, it is important to view ICTs from an ethical perspective. This research theoretically explores the key aspects of ethics that should be applied to ICT projects in rural communities. Understanding the key aspects of ethics related to ICTs would foster the adoption of ICTs in rural communities and ensure that the integration of such ICTs is compatible with existing development strategies in developing countries. Four existing frameworks on ethical practice are explored which serve as a foundation for a theoretical framework of ethical practice in ICT4D. The proposed framework highlights four ethical themes that should be considered in rural ICT4D initiatives. These themes include: collaboration and participation, socio-economic context, cost and benefits and underlying stakeholder interests. It is suggested that further research and practical application can inform the framework.
Citation : Mthoko, H. and Pade-Khene, C. (2012) Towards a theoretical framework on ethical practice in ICT4D programmes. Information Development Journal. 29, (1), pp. 36-53
Research Institute : Centre for Computing and Social Responsibility (CCSR)
Peer Reviewed : Yes