IDS Policy Briefing;40

Understanding ‘the users’ in Technology for Transparency and Accountability Initiatives

Published on 23 October 2013

The use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) has risen dramatically since the turn of the millennium, in particular among people in countries of the global South.

This has fuelled great enthusiasm among the aid, development and technology communities over the past decade to apply Technology for Transparency and Accountability Initiatives (T4TAIs) in order to deepen democracy and improve developmental outcomes. Funding agencies, engaged activists and governance scholars are looking closely at their impact and effectiveness.

In particular, concerns have been raised that not enough attention has been paid to the people expected to take up and use T4TAIs. If T4TAIs are to be accessible, effective and contribute to their stated goals, it is critical that understanding if and how ordinary people currently use T4TAIs and the constraints on their taking action is significantly improved. This Briefing reports on a learning study undertaken by Hivos and partners which is a step in this direction.


Rosemary McGee

Power and Popular Politics Cluster Lead

Publication details

published by
Wanjiku Kelbert, A., McGee, R. and Carlitz, R.
IDS Policy Briefing, issue 40


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