Practical Insights on ICT4D

what is ICT4D?

What is ICT4D?

Information and Communications Technologies for Development (ICT4D) is the use of digital solutions to magnify the intent of communities to accelerate their social and economic development.

Information and communication technologies (ICT) include hardware, software, content, and the design and implementation methodologies required for their successful adoption. ICT4D employs all technology interventions that can assist poor and marginalized people. Radio, television, mobile phones, artificial intelligence, blockchain, UAV drones, and geographic information systems are common digital tools.

Who Uses ICT4D Solutions?

ICT4D advisors use digital development approaches to deploy cutting-edge innovations in the world’s more difficult environments. They work to reduce the digital divide in education, healthcare, agriculture, and civil society. Advisors  ensure equitable access to information and communication technologies around the world, minimizing disparities in gender, geography, and wealth.

Experts in ICT4D solutions work for major donors, like USAID, DFID, and the Gates Foundation, their implementing partner organizations, and humanitarian aid organizations. They also work in national and local governments, and the private sector.

What Are ICT4D Solutions?

ICTs are deploying in multiple sectors to improve international development outcomes. Here are the three most popular ICT4D solution areas:

  • Healthcare: Mobile phone applications can help patients self-diagnose their ailments using the camera, microphone, or other sensor. Front line health workers can use electronic medical records to track patients, and healthcare managers employ big data and algorithms to see disease patterns at national scale.
  • Education: Students read eBooks to improve their reading ability while teachers employ computer-assisted adaptive testing to understand learner needs. School headmasters leverage educational management information systems to predict learning solutions.
  • Agriculture: Farmers work with drones and GIS to modernize farming practices taught by extension agents trained in online learning programs. Ministries estimate crop yields with real-time satellite data.

Examples of ICT4D Solutions

ICTworks is constantly researching emerging ICT4D programs to identify successful interventions and share lessons learned with our growing readership. You can learn more about impactful projects in the expanding list below:

Who Is Really Leading Your ICT4D Intervention?

Who Is Really Leading Your ICT4D Intervention?

Published on: Nov 29 2017 by Wayan Vota - 4 Comments
At a previous employer, I was always shocked at the role of the national staff in the organization. Here were some of the smartest, most dedicated professionals...
Your Current ICT4D Skills Should Be Obsolete in Five Years

Your Current ICT4D Skills Should Be Obsolete in Five Years

Published on: Nov 16 2017 by Wayan Vota - Comments Off on Your Current ICT4D Skills Should Be Obsolete in Five Years
What is the role of ICT4D professionals within an international development organization? I was recently asked this question by three large USAID implementing partners....
The Top 10 ICT4D Project Failures Will Surprise You

The Top 10 ICT4D Project Failures Will Surprise You

Published on: Nov 15 2017 by Guest Writer - 3 Comments
What day-to-day failures do you expect to happen most in your ICT4D projects? Laptop theft? Viruses? Outright malfeasance? I worry every day about the risks to...
Thank You For Complaining About Our ICT4D Intervention

Thank You For Complaining About Our ICT4D Intervention

Published on: Nov 09 2017 by Wayan Vota - 2 Comments
Recently, I received a strong complaint about an ICT4D intervention I was working on. At first my colleagues who were helping me with this project and I were angry...
We Still Talk About Women as if They Were a Sector

We Still Talk About Women as if They Were a Sector

Published on: Nov 08 2017 by Guest Writer - 2 Comments
The title of this post is the most memorable quote from our recent Technology Salon, asking the question “Are We Really Closing the Gender Gap in ICT4D?“,...
I Made a Facebook Chatbot And You Can Too

I Made a Facebook Chatbot And You Can Too

Published on: Aug 17 2017 by Adam Fivenson - 5 Comments
When I first heard that Facebook Messenger was introducing chatbots, I immediately thought back to junior high summers. Back then I was spending a lot of time in...
Apply Now: $127,000 for African ICT Innovators

Apply Now: $127,000 for African ICT Innovators

Published on: Jul 19 2017 by Wayan Vota - 2 Comments
At ICTworks, we are constantly looking for new funding opportunities for ICT innovators. Sign up to get alerts for new contracts, grants, and award funding. FIRE...
Ten Concepts Everyone in ICT4D Should Know

Ten Concepts Everyone in ICT4D Should Know

Published on: Jul 06 2017 by Guest Writer - Comments Off on Ten Concepts Everyone in ICT4D Should Know
I was recently asked which concepts are helpful in learning more about Information and Communication Technologies for Development (ICT4D). I didn’t have an immediate...
We Must Stop Designing for Needs and Start Designing for Aspirations

We Must Stop Designing for Needs and Start Designing for Aspirations

Published on: Jun 22 2017 by Wayan Vota - 3 Comments
Traditional design works hard to accommodate people, to accept their attitudes, skills, and values as they are. International development, however, typically requires...
Your Fancy Android App Needs an Offline Mode

Your Fancy Android App Needs an Offline Mode

Published on: Jun 01 2017 by Wayan Vota - 15 Comments
You’ve done your user-centered design, you’ve assessed your constituents, and you’ve determined that an Android application is the best way to...