Radio, ICT Convergence and Knowledge Brokerage: Lessons from Sub‐Saharan Africa

Heather Gilberds, Mary Myers
Volume 43 Issue 5
Published: 12 September 2012
DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1759-5436.2012.00366.x
Abstract: This article examines the changing role of radio for development in sub‐Saharan Africa as ‘new’ Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) increasingly enter the information landscape. Grounded in the empirical findings of a research programme – Radio, Convergence and Development in Africa (RCDA) – it explores the potential for convergent communication technologies to improve knowledge transfer and knowledge sharing between development actors at all levels. By drawing on research carried out as part of the RCDA programme, this article raises questions about the ability for radio broadcasters to act as ‘knowledge intermediaries’ in this context – brokering and translating information about development issues between international non‐governmental organisations (NGOs), local NGOs, grassroots advocacy groups and local beneficiaries. It draws attention to the barriers impeding their ability to fulfill this role by highlighting issues related to ICT convergence, capacity, funding and ‘NGO‐isation’.
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From Issue: Vol 43, No 5 (2012) | New Roles for Communication in Development?