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Constructing the knowledge base for knowledge-driven development

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Information and communication technologies (ICTs) represent a major opportunity for world development. However, the “digital divide” is increasing rather than diminishing existing inequalities. This paper suggests several ways in which experiences with ICTs can be shared and in which more resources could be mobilised to support local ICT projects and locally-defined goals. The activities of the Commonwealth’s agencies in this area are used to provide illustrations of a variety of initiatives. It is argued that strategic action on the part of agencies within their own organisations and in co-operation with others is likely to help to facilitate the process of constructing a stronger knowledge base for knowledge-driven development, but that there is no room for complacency. In addition to improved co-ordination and co-operation, effort is needed to focus on the purposes and goals of knowledge-driven development, rather than on the short-term interests of individual stakeholder organisations.

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