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Title: The acceptance, use and appropriation of mobile telephony in the lives of Bangladeshi farmers : a qualitative enquiry
Author: Dey, B. L.
ISNI:       0000 0004 2722 280X
Awarding Body: Queen's University Belfast
Current Institution: Queen's University Belfast
Date of Award: 2012
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This thesis investigates howlCTs such as mobile telephony can be used and appropriated to meet the information needs of Bangladeshi farmers. Bangladesh like many other developing countries has recently experienced an unprecedented boom in the uptake of mobile telephony. Mobile telephones are not only used by 'urban elites, they are also in the hands of underprivileged communities including the likes of rural farmers. It is argued that the use of ICTs can provide disadvantaged communities with an access to information and thereby enable them to enhance their quality of life through increased productivity. However, existing research holds limited evidence of why and how these communities use ICTs, what kind of problems they encounter and how they integrate the same in their daily lives. The current study addresses these issues. Two remote regions in Bangladesh were selected for the fieldwork. Ethnographic observations along with focus group discussions and in-depth interviews were used to collect data. The findings revealed that a lack of information of prices and availability of fertilisers and a lack of knowledge on pest and plant diseases are major concerns for the farmers. The local telecentres hardly offered any solution to these problems. However, the farmers found it beneficial to use mobile telephony despite some difficulties. The social, occupational and psychological benefits from mobile telephony motivated them to use and appropriate it through inventive means and adaptation. The findings also suggest that the acceptance, use and appropriation of a technology need to be investigated with a holistic approach. This thesis adds to the argument for a bottom up approach to leT intervention in development activities. For mobile telephone manufacturers and network providers the findings showcase the future business prospects lying in the bottom of the economic pyramid and suggest for context relevant and tailor made product/service development to cater the needs of this huge market segment.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available