The Lamp Without a Genie

Pattern number within this pattern set: 
Ricardo Gomez

While the Internet can be used as a powerful toolfor human development, it is today clear that it does not constitute an automatic remedy.


The initial euphoria that saw new information technolgoies as a panacea to solve development problmes is now over. More cautious and critical perspectives are emerging, as lessons are drawn from experiences in the field.


While access to technology is important, its meaningful use and social appropriation to solve development problems is far more important. Muhc effort has been dedicated to set up public and community access to the Internet, through telecentres and related activities.


Telecentre initiatives have demonstrated the importance of participatory strategies that allow community involvement in the process of adoption and implementation of ICTs for development. The experience, however, has also demonstrated that efforts still have to be directed towards training and infrastructure, towards public policies tha support favourable legislation, increaed community invovlement and participation, towards more alliances between the private, public and civil society sectors in oder to guarantee sustainability, towards the involvement of women, and all social actors who can contribute to and benefit from these initiatives.

Pattern status: