During this period (before the creation of the term “ICT4D”), the focus was on computing / data processing for back-office applications in large government and private sector organizations in developing countries.
The combined advent of the Millennium Development Goals and mainstream usage of the Internet in industrialised countries led to a rapid rise in investment in ICT infrastructure and ICT programmes/projects in developing countries. The most typical application was the telecentre, used to bring information on development issues such as health, education, and agricultural extension into poor communities. More latterly, telecentres might also deliver online or partly online government services.
The Western Cape government currently focuses it’s ICT4D efforts in the Cape Access Programme with it’s e-centres that are found at various towns across the province. The planned Broadband roll out shows commitment to bringing ICT solutions to the lesser developed regions of the Western Cape province. My concerns however question the sustainability of laying infrastructure without placing a priority on the online skills of the users in these regions.