Development Cooperation 2.0 (I): Manuel Acevedo: The challenges of the integration of ICTs in a networked cooperation

Live notes at Cooperación al Desarrollo 2.0: I Encuentro Internacional de las Tecnologías de la Información y la Comunicación para la Cooperación al Desarrollo [Development Cooperation 2.0: I International Conference on Information and Communication Technologies for Cooperation for Development], in Gijón, Spain, 30 and 31 January 2008.

Keynote speech: Manuel Acevedo
The challenges of the integration of ICTs in a networked cooperation

How do we integrate ICTs in Development Cooperation? What does “networked cooperation” exactly means?

Human Development and Network Society

Human Development according to Amartya Sen: not only “physical” development, possibilities, but also capabilities, entitlements.

Network Society according to Manuel Castells: everything (society) is structured in networks, which are indeed different from hierarchical, vertical structures.

ICTs for Development

Denning: we can describe knowledge ecosystems, using the metaphor of a garden: Knowledge cannot be extracted, we have to make it grow

Labelle: ICTs for Development:

  • making access easy
  • helping countries to reach knowledge economy
  • enabling people

Digital Divide

  • access
  • capacity
  • relevant content

Fostering the Information Society:

  • Infrastructure
  • Capacity
  • Services
    • Content
    • Education
    • Health
    • Work
    • Commerce
    • e-Government
    • Other Services
  • Legal Framework
  • Policies
Mainstreaming ICTs in Development Cooperation

Use it in each and every aspect of the daily work in a cooperation agency or nonprofit: design, planning, project implementation and management, communication, etc.

It, hence, implies and extensive adoption of ICTs within the organization.

Issues: special attention towards ICT integration, corporate strategies about ICT4D, specialized departments about ICT4D, ICT4D project funding, etc.

Reasons to: increase efficacy; more control about performance and autonomy; stimulator and catalytic effect, using the own organization as a sandbox; to share knowledge and good practices.

Networks for Development

1-D networks: much alike hierarchies

2-D networks: coordinated; norms very important; action is mostly planned; access to information is the priority

3-D networks: nodes are to dynamize the network; no coordinators; the functioning is ad-hoc; monitoring is periodic; knowledge creation is the priority

Development networks

  • corporate
  • about knowledge or thematic
  • around projects
  • networked projects
  • open source
  • created by “diaspora”

3-D networks, enabling networks, are the best fit for development cooperation

Development Cooperation needs a redesign in its architecture, shifting towards networked collaboration. And same stands for projects, not only for organizations. A shift towards putting knowledge at the center would be a must. It is important to state that the network creates a network capital, which emerges from the fact of the mere existence (and intensive use, of course) of the network.

More info


Development Cooperation 2.0 (2008)

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

Peña-López, I. (2008) “Development Cooperation 2.0 (I): Manuel Acevedo: The challenges of the integration of ICTs in a networked cooperation” In ICTlogy, #52, January 2008. Barcelona: ICTlogy.
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2 Comments to “Development Cooperation 2.0 (I): Manuel Acevedo: The challenges of the integration of ICTs in a networked cooperation” »

  1. Great post.. thanks for sharing. Totally agree on the need for the development sector to shift towards a new architecture and “business model”. You might also be interested in a series of related resources on “development 2.0” which you can find on delicious
    ( Sean McClawry has also an interesting approach on Sustainable Development 2.0 –>



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