Reviewing Universal Access in South Africa

Show simple item record Benjamin, Peter 2016-02-28T21:24:22Z 2016-02-28T21:24:22Z 2001-12-15
dc.identifier.citation Benjamin, P. (2001). Reviewing universal access in South Africa. The Southern African Journal of Information and Communication (SAJIC), 2. en_ZA
dc.identifier.issn ISSN 1607-2235 (print version)
dc.identifier.issn ISSN 2077-5040  (online version)
dc.description.abstract This article reviews the progress towards universal access to telephony and other information projects in South Africa between 1996, when the last Telecommunications Act was passed, and 2000. It draws on the results of the Telecentre 2000 (1) study and the Community ICT (2)research project. The Telecentre programme of the Universal Service Agency (USA) is examined in detail, with statistics on the progress of their 65 telecentres being provided. This programme is critiqued, focusing both on the problems of the telecentres and a misunderstanding of their role in creating a model for universal access. Initiatives, such as Vodacom Phone shops and the Multi-Purpose Community Centres of the Government Communications & Information Service, are also covered to show other models for community ICT projects were possible. The statistics on universal access since 1996, showing a major increase in access to telephony, are given though this has little to do with the work of the USA. The idea of a "Dig-it-all divide" is introduced. The challenges facing the country in this sector are very different from what they were in 1996, and the focus of the work in this area must shift from chasing numbers to finding real ways in which these technologies can support people-centred development.
dc.language.iso en en_ZA
dc.publisher LINK Centre, University of the Witwatersrand (Wits), Johannesburg en_ZA
dc.title Reviewing Universal Access in South Africa en_ZA
dc.type Article en_ZA

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  • SAJIC Issue 2, 2001
    Articles on e-commerce in Africa, policies of surveillance, institutional arrangements for communications policy and regulation, universal access, and the Next Generation Network.

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