The World Bank on ICT Infrastructures for Development

Michael Trucano and Marco Zennaro respectively sent me two resources concerning ICT Infrastructures, both of them published by the World Bank.

The first one is the updating of the Quick guide to low-cost computing devices and initiatives for the developing world. The guide is a short inventory of known projects related to ‘low cost ICT devices for the developing world’ authored by Michael Trucano himself. While the list looks quite complete to me, I’d rely on the accuracy of a previous work of him, Knowledge Maps: ICTs in Education, to sincerely believe that the list is surely complete.

The second one is World Bank Working Paper no.27 Telecommunications Challenges in Developing Countries: Asymmetric Interconnection Charges for Rural Areas, by Andrew Dymond. Going against what tradition has dictated, Dymond states that the solution for the last mile problem should not be — as it usually happens — subsidies, but asymmetric (i.e. not the same for everyone) pricing, to adjust what end users pay to the cost of providing them with connectivity. Though the approach is quite unheard of and really defying, he provides examples on how this new scenario could be possible… and even desirable by the end users themselves — let aside the companies.

For those new to Dymond, he coauthored — with Sonja Oestmann — the handbook Rural ICT Toolkit For Africa, and — with Juan Navas-Sabater and Niina Juntunen — the well-know book Telecommunications and information services for the poor. Toward a Strategy for Universal Access.

By the way, infoDev’s ICT Regulation Toolkit has also been updated and should be almost complete by January 2007.

If you need to cite this article in a formal way (i.e. for bibliographical purposes) I dare suggest:

Peña-López, I. (2006) “The World Bank on ICT Infrastructures for Development” In ICTlogy, #39, December 2006. Barcelona: ICTlogy.
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