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Cambodia - Pol Pot's Shadow, October, 2002

Related Features
Synopsis of "Hole in the Wall"

Favorite Sites, Digital Glossary, Interview

Making Connections

Learn more about India

The International Digital Divide




Links and Resources
Background on India India and the Digital Divide
The International Technology Gap
Closing the Digital Divide
Media in India

Background on India

India Image
Operated by India's Department of Information Technology, the government's gateway site links to the home pages of the president, the parliament, ministries and departments, and universities.

India Census 2001
The main index for India's Census 2001 links to statistics on urban and rural dwellers, literate and illiterate populations, the working and unemployed.

Explore India
Read more about India's rich history, from the great dynasties to British rule and independence, provided by India's Ministry of Tourism and Culture.

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India and the Digital Divide

While India has reaped great benefits from the digital revolution, no country has a wider digital divide.

Hole in the Wall
Learn more about NIIT's Dr. Sugata Mitra's "hole in the wall" experiments, in which computer kiosks have been installed in poor Indian communities, and read his theory of minimally invasive education.

Smart Schools
India's Ministry of Communications and Information Technology is investing in a number of initiatives to improve access to information technologies for all, including a $2 billion program for Internet connectivity in 100,000 schools.

Technology Habits
Read about the media habits of Internet users in India, collected by the International Data Corporation.

Economic Development
The World Bank's Country Brief charts poverty reduction and economic growth in India as well as continued challenges for the country.

World Economic Forum
The World Economic Forum's Global Digital Divide Initiative for 2002 works to create public-private initiatives around the world. As part of the initiative, chip-maker Intel and the nongovernmental organization World Links are launching pilot projects to introduce computers into thousands of Indian schools and train teachers.

The India Literacy Project, a volunteer organization founded by an Indian nuclear scientist trained in the United States, coordinates literacy projects throughout India, including in rural and poor areas where the literacy rates are among the lowest in the world.

The Bangalore Divide
A grassroots literacy program, led by the Akshara Foundation in partnership with leading Bangalore software companies and the government, has recruited more than 1,500 volunteer teachers to fan out across 300 slums in Bangalore and aims to enroll every underprivileged child in the city by 2003. BBC Online News, April 23, 2002

Brain Drain
The alumni of India's world-renowned ITT Technology Institute make up a veritable who's-who list in digital technology, yet in recent years 40 to 50 percent of its grads have left to pursue graduate degrees in the United States -- many never return to India., Dec. 6, 1999

The Simputer
Bangolore entreprenuer Vinay L. Deshpande has developed a handheld computer for use in rural villages in India and other underdeveloped parts of the world. It resembles a Palm personal digital assistant and runs on AA batteries. San Jose Mercury News, Aug. 14, 2002

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The International Technology Gap

The International Technology Gap The world's digital "haves" and "have-nots" are concentrated, respectively, in the industrialized and developing worlds. Many experts argue that closing the international digital divide will require more than parachuting donated computers to faraway corners of the globe. Most agree the solution must start with economic development, including reducing poverty, malnutrition and poor health. These links explore the challenges to bridging the digital divide, from aging infrastructure and poor telephone service to illiteracy and poverty.

Human Development
Every year the United Nations ranks countries by a human development index, a composite measure of quality of health, education and income.

World Employment
"The World Employment Report: Life at Work in the Information Economy," produced by the United Nation's International Labor Organization, looks at improvements in global employment, but it also examines widening gaps between the technologically disconnected and the connected, and the digital divide between men and women.

Global Impact
The Center for Internet Studies at the University of Washington is focused on the study of the Internet's global impact on society and the impact of the disruptive forces often associated with the Internet revolution. Its Web site currently features a report on the obstacles facing countries eager to develop IT-enabled services industries.

Real Access
Writer Margaret Visser explores the findings of a report by the international NGO, "Spanning the Digital Divide: Understanding and Tackling the Issues," on the failure of digital divide initiatives that singularly focus on computers and connections. Namibia Economist, 2001

Information Rich, Information Poor
BBC News Online probes the gap between the information rich and the information poor, with case studies in Burkina Faso, Mongolia, Morocco and the United States. BBC, 1999

The History of the Technology Divide
In "Clear Thinking on the Digital Divide," the Progressive Policy Institute places the digital divide in a historical context, looking at changes in technology gaps over time by examining four earlier innovations: the telephone, the radio, the television and the VCR. July 26, 2001

Digital Dumping
Wired News examines the issue of "electronic waste," in which developing countries have become the dumping ground for recycled computers from the United States and other industrialized nations. Wired Magazine, June 3, 2002

The British Council Gets Connected
A British Council seminar on distant learning, development and opportunities focuses on education and digital divid, computer literacy, and third world children. February 2002.

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Closing the Digital Divide

United Nations
The United Nation's Information and Communication Technologies Task Force is a global initiative to bridge the global digital divide, in which members representing governments; civil society, including the private sector, not-for-profit foundations, NGOs and academia; and organizations of the United Nations system have equal decision-making power.

Digital Divide Network
Coordinated by the Benton Foundation, the Digital Divide Network (DDN) is a clearinghouse for information, strategies and efforts targeting solutions to the digital divide. Its Web site is a forum for practitioners to share their experiences with colleagues around the world. DDN looks at the causes and effects of the divide from the angle of technology access, literacy and learning, content, and economic development.

Digital Channel
The Digital Opportunity Channel is an online news channel on digital opportunities and success stories from around the world, a joint initiative of and the Digital Divide Network.

Information Technology Toolkit is an information clearinghouse for the international development community, educators, policy makers and grassroots organizations, delivering technology to improve people's lives. A free toolkit includes information on where to get free or low-cost computers, software and e-mail accounts and how to develop and host Web sites for free.

Wiring the World
The Boston Globe produced a series of feature stories about bringing high-speed Internet and telephone connections to countries left behind in the digital revolution, including an undersea cable project that would lay 20,000 miles of fiber optics around Africa. Boston Globe, July 22, 2001

Geek Corps millionaire and former Fulbright scholar Ethan Zuckerman founded a volunteer program modeled after the Peace Corps, in which high-tech professionals volunteer in developing countries and work with local businesses to utilize new technologies.

Digital Divide
This two-part PBS documentary series shines a light on the role computers play in widening social gaps throughout American society, and particularly among young people. The Web site contains a historical timeline of education technology in the U.S., interviews with professors, policy makers and people on the frontlines of bridging the digital divide, and strategies for integrating technology in schools. It includes information on challenging racial and gender stereotypes contributing to girls' and youth of color's lack of computer know-how.

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Media in India

Indo-Asian News Service (IANS)
The IANS is a multilingual, multinational wire service headquartered in New Delhi.

The Indian Express
This online version of one of India's leading news dailies, owned by the Indian Express Group, includes links to sister newspapers, including Express Computer, a newsweekly on India's information technology industry.

The Telegraph
The largest circulated English-language daily in Eastern India, the Telegraph's Monday edition includes special features on science, computers and health.

The Hindu
A daily since 1889, the Hindu has a readership of more than 3 million; its main edition is printed from Madras.

The Times of India
The news daily, the flagship of India's largest media conglomerate, Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd., has more than 4 million readers.

The Hindustan Times
The news daily is part of the Hindustan Times Group.

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