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ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL BENEFITS

OF RURAL TELECOMMUNICATIONS:

A REPORT TO THE WORLD BANK

by

Professor Heather E. Hudson


Director
Telecommunications Management and Policy Program
McLaren School of Business
University of San Francisco

June 1995
ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL BENEFITS
OF RURAL TELECOMMUNICATIONS:

A REPORT TO THE WORLD BANK

Table of Contents

Executive Summary iii


1. Purpose of the Study 1
2. Methodology of the Study 2
3. The Changing Rural Context 5
3.1. The Socio-Economic Context 5
3.2. The Technological Context 6
4. The Role of Telecommunications in Development: An Overview 8
4.1. The Importance of Information 8
4.2. Telecommunications and Development: Macro-level Studies 10
5. Telecommunications and Rural Development 14
5.1. Regional Analyses and Case Studies 14
5.2. Rural Telecommunications Users 16
5.3. Benefits Related to Distance and Density 17
5.4. Social Benefits 18
5.5. Rural Projects in Industrialized Countries 19
6. Telecommunications and Rural Sectors 22
6.1. Agriculture 22
6.2. Education 24
6.3. Health Care 29
6.4. Employment and Entrepreneurship 32
6.5. Travel, Transportation, and Energy 34
6.6. Studies on Women and Rural Telecommunications 35
7. Implications for Planning 36
7.1. Findings from the Research 36
7.2. The Need for Integrated Planning 37
7.3. New Demands and Opportunities 38
7.4. Universal Access 38
8. Recommendations to the World Bank 39
8.1. Support for Rural Telecommunications 39
8.2. Access to Telecommunications 39
8.3. Socio-Economic Research 40
8.4. Evaluation 41
8.5. Dissemination of Findings 44
Appendix A: Sources Consulted 45
Appendix B: A Telecommunications Development Report Card 47
Telecommunications and Development: Selected Bibliography 49

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EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

The purpose of this report is to set the stage for a re-examination of investment
priorities and strategies in rural telecommunications by synthesizing what we know
about the role of telecommunications in the development process. The report provides an
overview of the evidence to date of the economic and social benefits of rural
telecommunications (RT).

The report reviews key studies and identifies theory and research findings that are
particularly relevant to rural regions of developing countries. It emphasizes research on
developing countries, but also includes research conducted in industrialized countries
that appears particularly relevant for rural regions of the developing world.

The analysis is accompanied by an extensive bibliography arranged according to


the themes of the report. This bibliography is by design illustrative rather than
exhaustive, as the literature on some telecommunications in some sectors such as
education and health care is very extensive.

The report and bibliography are arranged thematically, to address the following
topics and research approaches:
! telecommunications and development: general
! telecommunications and rural/regional development
! case studies
! development sectors:
" agriculture, forestry, fisheries
" education and training
" health and disaster communications
" business, industry, entrepreneurship
" transportation, travel, and energy
" women and telecommunications.

1. Key Findings from the Research

Findings from research and pilot projects in rural and developing regions show
that telecommunications can contribute to social and economic development. There has
been progress in developing models that can predict quantitative financial benefits of
investment in rural telecommunications, typically based on the theoretical underpinnings
of the role of information in economic activities. There is also substantial evidence on
benefits that result from specific applications of telecommunications in various sectors
such as distance education, medical consultation, administrative support, and transport
substitution. Some studies also conclude that benefits are proportionately greater in areas

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of low teledensity, but it is not clear whether this is because each added increment of
telecommunications is a greater percentage of the installed base than in high teledensity
areas.

Many authors also note that telecommunications should not be seen as a panacea.
A more positive statement of this conclusion is that telecommunications is necessary but
not sufficient for development. Other forms of infrastructure including transportation,
water, and electrification are important, as may be other factors such as labor costs, skills
and reliability; tax or other concessions or incentives; and proximity to major markets.

Thus, there is no simple formula that can safely predict quantifiable benefits of
investing in telecommunications in a specific rural area, because many factors may
influence the extent of the impact of better access to information. They include:
! existing and planned economic initiatives;
! well organized public services and or private sector activities;
! existence of other essential infrastructure;
! participation of users in planning location and features of
telecommunications facilities to eliminate cultural, linguistic, or gender-
based barriers;
! administrative systems for development activities emphasizing supervision
and feedback;
! employee training where telecommunications facilities are installed to
support sector activities;
! accessibility of telecommunications facilities for personal use.

2. The Changing Socio-Economic and Technical Contexts

Throughout the developing world, rural as well as urban industries are


being drawn into the global economy. To stay internationally competitive, farmers also
must resort to increased specialization, and react to shifts in consumer demand.
Historically, rural development took place where there was geographic advantage in the
form of arable land or natural resources. Increasingly, new economic development
depends on human resources, and economic diversification. Thus, basic education of
children and adults as well as specific training are important, yet rural regions worldwide
continue to face a shortage of teachers and educational facilities. Typically, rural residents
also have much more limited access to health care than their urban counterparts, resulting
in lower life expectancy and higher infant mortality rates in rural than in urban areas.

The technological context is defined by several major trends in telecommunications


including:
! Capacity: Satellites and optical fiber have enormous capacity to carry

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information, ranging from thousands of telephone calls, to financial and
scientific data, to motion video for distance education and highly detailed
images for remote medical diagnosis.
! Digitization: Any type of information, including voice and video, may be
sent as a stream of bits.
! Convergence: The convergence of telecommunications, data processing,
and imaging technologies is ushering in the era of multimedia, in which
voice, data, and images may be combined according to the needs of users.
! Ubiquity: Advances in wireless technology ranging from satellites to
cellular radio make it possible to provide reliable communications virtually
anywhere.

Among the recent technological innovations that can make rural service more
reliable and cheaper to provide are:
! Wireless technologies: such as cellular radio and rural radio subscriber
systems;
! VSATs (very small aperture satellite terminals);
! Digital compression: e.g. for digital voice and video conferencing;
! Store-and-forward data: e.g. using low earth orbiting (LEO) satellites;
! Voice Messaging: e.g. to provide "virtual telephone service" for people still
without individual telephone service.

3. The Role of Telecommunications in Development: An Overview

If information is critical to development, then telecommunications, as a means of


sharing information, is not simply a connection between people, but a link in the chain of
the development process itself. The role of telecommunications in transmitting
information can be particularly significant in rural areas where alternative means of
obtaining and conveying information such as personal contact, transport, and postal
services are likely to be less accessible.

In the 1970s, several studies noted a high correlation between economic growth
and telecommunications investment. However, these studies did not answer the chicken-
and-egg question: Did telecommunications investment contribute to economic growth,
and/or did economic growth result in increased telecommunications investment?

The first major study to address the causality issue underlying the correlation
between telecommunications investment and economic growth found that
telecommunications investment did increase as economies grew, but there was also a
small but significant contribution of telecommunications to economic development. The
implication was that early investment in telecommunications could contribute to

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economic growth.

Using the same methodology, it was estimated that the benefits of the U.S. Rural
Electrification Administration (REA) telephone loan program were 6 to 7 times higher
than costs to the government in interest subsidies. A further analysis showed not only
that increases in output or GNP level lead to increases in investment in
telecommunications, but that the converse is also true: increases in telecommunications
investment stimulate overall economic growth. Findings from a 1993 study suggest that
investment in telecommunications infrastructure is causally related to the national total
factor productivity and that contributions to aggregate and sector productivity growth
rates from telecommunications advancements are both quantifiable and substantial.

Benefits of telecommunications may be grouped under several categories, e.g.:


! market information for buying and selling;
! transport efficiency and regional development;
! isolation and emergency security;
! coordination of international activity, including business, tourism
and international organization.
To summarize, instantaneous communication can help improve:
! efficiency, or the ratio of output to cost;
! effectiveness, or the quality of products and services; and
! equity, or the distribution of benefits throughout the society.

4. Telecommunications and Rural Development

4.1. Regional Analyses and Case Studies

Several studies from western Europe and North America support threshold
theories that telecommunications is a complement in the development process, i.e.
generally, certain levels of other basic infrastructure as well as organizational activity are
required for the indirect benefits of telecommunications to be realized. In other words,
telecommunications is a necessary but not sufficient condition for rural economic
development.

Telecommunications may also serve as a catalyst at certain stages of the rural


development process, becoming particularly important when other innovations are
introduced such as improved farming practices, lines of credit, incentives for
decentralization and diversification of the rural economic base.

Several studies indicate that economic benefits of telecommunications are related


to distance and density, so that benefits are proportionately greater where telephone

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density is low and alternatives to communicate are expensive and/or time consuming.
Field research from developing countries cites examples of rural residents keeping in
touch with family members who have gone to the city or overseas to seek work, families
contacting relatives scattered in many rural communities, and field staff such as nurses
and teachers in rural posts keeping in touch with colleagues and family members. It
appears that telecommunications is one of several factors that may tend to reduce staff
turnover, with other benefits such as pay bonuses, travel and continuing education also
being important.

4.2. Telecommunications Users

Several studies indicate that the most frequent users of rural telecommunications
are better educated than average rural residents, and may have higher incomes or be
engaged in progressive agriculture or other employment where access to information is
important. Some studies show that better educated users call farther afield; others indicate
that the most common characteristic of telecommunications users is that they are
"information seekers" regardless of education or income source.

One study found that residential telephones appear to contribute more to


economic development than business telephones. The reason may be that in many
developing countries, residential phones are often used for business activities, and are
available 24 hours per day, whereas business phones are available only during work
hours.

4.3. Rural Projects in Industrialized Countries

Industrialized countries in Europe and North America have supported rural


telecommunications pilot projects and trials, but little evaluative information has been
released. Major European Union projects include STAR (Special Telecommunications
Action for the Regions) and ORA (Opportunities for Rural Areas), which are intended to
create a solid basis of knowledge and expertise for subsequent implementation of suitable
telematic systems in specific rural areas.

Another European-initiated application is telecottages, which originated in


Scandinavia. These are typically small buildings or rooms in rural communities equipped
with a few personal computers, printers, modems and a fax machine. Although there has
not been a systematic evaluation of costs and benefits, one consistent finding is that an
important element is the resource person who provides training and other guidance. It
appears that other factors are needed for the project to go beyond the awareness and
training phase, such as local entrepreneurs, business experience, and contacts with
potential contractors for rural information services such as data entry and telemarketing.

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Canada has supported rural telecommunications projects for distance education,
telemedicine and teleworking, many of them using Canadian domestic satellites to link
isolated and remote areas. In the U.S., the Rural Utilities Service (formerly Rural
Electrification Administration) has established a Distance Learning and Medical Grant
Program. The U.S. Department of Education supports distance education through its Star
Schools Program, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration
(NTIA) has awarded infrastructure grants for the planning and construction of
telecommunications networks for educational, health, library and other social services.
Some U.S. states are combining high quality infrastructure with attractive rural settings to
attract "footloose" entrepreneurs such as consultants, architects, and software developers
who appreciate the quality of rural life.

4.4. Telecommunications and Rural Sectors

C Agriculture

In the U.S., access to computerized databases has helped farmers to get higher
prices for their crops and to enter foreign markets. Examples of profitable use of market
information in developing regions range from Brazilian coffee growers contacting the
Chicago futures exchange, to farmers in the Nile Delta taking orders from merchants in
Alexandria by telephone, to Sri Lankan farmers obtaining market information from
Colombo.

C Education

Today, radio is still used extensively for distance education in many developing
countries, while televised courses are more often found in industrialized countries.
However, the major change has been in the growth of interactive applications, ranging
from audio tutorials and student interaction to computer conferencing and in some
limited applications, fully interactive video. Corporate trainers have estimated that
distance learning can cut training costs in half, while one study estimates that the U.S.
education sector saved $76.1 billion dollars through use of telecommunications from 1963
to 1991.

Four basic models have been developed to use telecommunications in education:


! curriculum-sharing: links schools so that courses available at one school
can be taught to students at another location, typically using microwave or
optical fiber;
! outside expert: delivers courses not available in rural schools, typically via
satellite, using phone lines for voice or computer interaction with students;
! virtual classroom: content is delivered to students in the workplace or at

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home; technologies range from satellite video to interactive audio and
computer conferencing;
! educational broker: seminars and courses from a variety of sources are
made available, typically via satellite.

C Health Care

Telecommunications is used for several different functions in support of health


care delivery:
! consultation: to give advice to rural health workers, or directly to isolated
patients;
! data collection and record keeping;
! training: of health care workers;
! education: of target populations including expectant mothers, mothers of
young children, groups susceptible to contagious diseases, etc.

Emergency communications are often cited as critically important; such social benefits
may precede economic benefits in less developed areas. For both education and health
care, incentives are often critical for sector adoption.

C Employment and Entrepreneurship

Rural businesses in the U.S. are increasingly using telecommunications networks


for competitive advantage. Information-intensive businesses such as "back offices,"
telemarketing, customer support and reservation systems have relocated to rural areas
with high quality and affordable telecommunications. However, other highly ranked
relocation factors include access to airports and highways, labor costs and skills, and
proximity to major markets. While developing countries do not have the range of rural
economic activities found in industrialized countries, there is evidence that reliable
telecommunications can help attract data entry businesses and support tourism.

C Travel, Transportation and Energy

Telecommunications offers important benefits in overcoming the distance penalty


that hampers business activities and service providers in rural and remote areas. Research
that focuses on travel/transport substitution measures benefits in terms of time saved,
sometimes converted to monetary amounts; another approach is to estimate the value of
energy saved if the number of trips could be reduced. The time value is most dramatic
when money is directly involved, for example, in timing transfers of funds between
banks.

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C Women and Rural Telecommunications

In many parts of the developing world, women do much of the agricultural work.
In such cases, the benefits of telecommunications in getting information about prices and
markets, and getting expert advice from extension agents should apply to women. While
studies on direct benefits to women are few, it appears that women do benefit either as
participants (teachers, health care workers, farmers, etc.) or indirectly through
information that benefits them as mothers, entrepreneurs, employees, community
residents, etc.

5. Implications for Planning

The general conclusion for planning that emerges from this review is that
telecommunications planning cannot be done in isolation if the intent is to derive
maximum benefits for rural development. Planning must be integrated across sectors; i.e.
it is necessary to involve several agencies in addition to telecommunications, representing
sectors such as education, health and social services, agriculture, and economic
development. To summarize, for coordinated communications planning to occur:
! telecommunications administrations must be informed about national
priorities and development plans;
! national planners must be made aware of the importance of
telecommunications infrastructure to national development;
! resources for extension and improvement of facilities must be allocated to
the telecommunications sector, and resources for training and utilization of
facilities must be included in the sector budgets;
! potential users must be made aware of the services available and how they
could benefit from them.

6. Recommendations for the World Bank

6.1. Support for Rural Telecommunications

The Bank should ensure that:


! every telecommunications loan includes a requirement for
telecommunications investment in rural areas;
! every loan requires an external evaluation.

Steps the Bank could take to help developing countries achieve this goal include:
! recommend that countries adopt a definition of access;
! include investment in rural telecommunications as part of any
telecommunications loan package;

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! encourage use of technologies particularly appropriate for rural
applications.

6.2. Socio-Economic Research

To fill in the gaps in existing research, the Bank should support the following types
of research using data from developing countries:
! macrolevel economic studies
! macrolevel social impact studies
! a policy paper that addresses:
! "take-off" indicators for other sectors
! planning techniques
! strategies to involve other sectors.
! research methodologies for field studies
! evaluation of recent projects
! appropriate technologies for rural telecommunications
! pricing models
! impact of rural telecommunications on women.

The Bank could also sponsor rural telecommunications research awards for
technology design and socio-economic research. The results of this research could be
disseminated through publications as well as regional and intersectoral workshops and
conferences.

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ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL BENEFITS OF RURAL TELECOMMUNICATIONS:

A REPORT TO THE WORLD BANK

by

Professor Heather E. Hudson1

1. Purpose of the Study


Telecommunications is a tool for the conveyance of information, and thus can be
critical to the development process. By providing information links between urban and
rural areas and among rural residents, telecommunications can overcome distance
barriers which hamper rural development. Access to information is key to many
development activities, including agriculture, industry, shipping, education, health and
social services.
Yet telecommunications is a "missing link" in much of the developing world, as the
Maitland Commission noted (International Commission, 1985). While there has been
progress in the past decade, access to telecommunications remains limited in much of the
developing world, and virtually non existent in many rural regions (ITU, 1994)
Why should these issues matter to development planners and funding agencies?
Because as rural economies are changing, there is even greater need for information.
There are also new opportunities. As shown below, many new technologies offer
considerable promise to extend access to telecommunications at lower cost than was
previously projected. And the movement to restructure the telecommunications sector in
many countries also offers new opportunities to create incentives to serve rural areas. Yet
without an understanding of the importance of the role of telecommunications in rural
development, these opportunities may be overlooked, and the information gap between

1
Margaret Arnold, MBA candidate at the University of San Francisco, served as a research
assistant for this project.

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urban and rural areas may widen, with consequences far beyond lost revenues for the
telecommunications operators.
The purpose of this report, therefore, is to set the stage for a re-examination of
investment priorities and strategies in rural telecommunications by synthesizing what we
know about the role of telecommunications in the development process. The report
provides an overview of the evidence to date of the economic and social benefits of rural
telecommunications (RT).
The report reviews key studies and identifies theory and research findings that are
particularly relevant to rural regions of developing countries. It emphasizes research on
developing countries, but also includes research conducted in industrialized countries
that appears particularly relevant for rural regions of the developing world.
The analysis is accompanied by an extensive bibliography arranged according to
the themes of the report. This bibliography is by design illustrative rather than
exhaustive, as the literature on some telecommunications in some sectors such as
education and health care is very extensive.
The report and bibliography are arranged thematically, to address the following
topics and research approaches:
! telecommunications and development: general
! telecommunications and rural/regional development
! case studies
! development sectors:
" agriculture, forestry, fisheries
" education and training
" health and disaster communications
" business, industry, entrepreneurship
" transportation, travel, and energy
! women and telecommunications.

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2. Methodology of the Study
The synthesis of research presented below is based on an extensive review of the
literature on telecommunications and rural development. To conduct the search, it was
first necessary to define the scope of the study, and then to identify sources of
information.
Telecommunications was considered to include interactive communications
services such as two-way radio, telephone, facsimile, teleconferencing, etc., and
technologies that deliver these services such as HF radio, other radio technologies, and
satellites. Broadcasting services such as radio and television, and other forms of mass
media were excluded. However, materials which include information on both interactive
and mass media (such as reports on satellite projects) were included. Studies of
applications using technologies that are highly unlikely to be available in rural
developing areas in the foreseeable future, such as switched broadband networks used for
medical imaging, were excluded.
In general, the search was limited to materials on development and developing
countries. However, studies of the impact of telecommunications on rural development in
industrialized countries were included if they appeared to shed light on the role of
telecommunications in the development process. Research on the role of
telecommunications in various sectors related to rural development was also reviewed,
including education, health and social services, agriculture, transportation, and other
economic activities. Again, the primary focus was on experience from developing
countries, but studies that appeared illustrative in terms of applications or findings that
could be relevant to developing countries were also included.
The bibliography focuses on works published since 1980, with an emphasis on
more recent reports and studies. Publications from before 1980 are included that are
considered particularly important in presenting theory or analysis of critical issues and
applications.
Numerous sources of information were used to prepare the literature review. They

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included:

Data Bases and Bibliographies:


Several databases were searched that cover telecommunications, as well as development
topics. The search covered the years 1980 to the present. Databases searched included:
! ABI/Inform
! CAB
! Econ Lit
! ERIC
! Social Sciences Index
U.S. Government Printing Office.
Specialized bibliographies consulted included:
! CAB International. Rural Women: Annotated Bibliography, 1992
! Hudson, A Bibliography on Telecommunications and Socio-Economic
Development, 1988.
Development Agencies and International Organizations:
! information from sources provided by development agencies such as
USAID and CIDA, and international organizations such as the ITU
and UNESCO;
! information from NGOs working on rural development projects or
using telecommunications to support services in rural areas.
U.S. Federal and State Agencies:
! information on rural telecommunications projects including results
of field trials and cost-benefit studies in the U.S. was also compiled
through the author's previous research and contacts with U.S. federal
and state agencies.
Additional Sources:

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! materials available to the author including reports on and papers
from conferences and workshops, etc. on rural telecommunications
that are not cited in data bases (so called "fugitive literature").
The bibliography is organized according to several categories. It begins with
references on telecommunications and development in general. It then lists sources
specifically on telecommunications and rural development, including studies concerning
both developing countries and rural regions of industrialized countries. The third section
includes case studies on developing countries and rural regions. The final section includes
illustrative studies on the role of telecommunications in various sectors associated with
rural development, including agriculture, education and training, health care and disaster
communication, transportation and energy, business and entrepreneurship, and women
in development. As noted above, these documents were selected to be illustrative of the
types of studies available rather than exhaustive, as complete bibliographies on each
sector would be extremely lengthy.

3. The Changing Rural Context


It is important to place this synthesis of the role of telecommunications in rural
development within context, as there have been significant changes in many rural
economies as well as in telecommunications and information technologies within the past
decade.

3.1. The Socio-Economic Context


The structure of urban economies is changing, with services now the most rapidly
growing sector. This structural shift is mirrored in rural economies in industrialized
countries, where public and private services now generally dwarf agriculture and
manufacturing. Yet the shift to services is only part of the change. Information-based
activities account for the largest part of the growth in services, and other sectors are
becoming increasingly information intensive.

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While this shift may not yet be evident in rural economies of many developing
countries, throughout the world, urban and rural activities are being drawn more and
more into the global economy. Manufacturers must now be able to respond to changes in
demand; suppliers must be able to produce small orders for quick delivery; merchants
must be able to update inventory and accounts records instantly. To stay internationally
competitive, farmers also must resort to increased specialization, and react to shifts in
consumer demand.
Historically, rural development took place where there was geographic advantage
in the form of arable land or natural resources. Increasingly, new economic development
depends on human resources, and economic diversification. Thus, basic education of
children and adults as well as specific training are increasingly important. Yet, rural
regions worldwide continue to face a shortage of teachers and educational facilities.
Typically, rural residents also have much more limited access to health care than their
urban counterparts because of a lack of health care providers and medical supplies and
clinics. The results are lower literacy levels, lower life expectancy, and higher infant
mortality rates in rural than in urban areas.

3.2. The Technological Context


Several major trends in telecommunications result from the development of new
transmission technologies and advances in the speed of microprocessors and the capacity
of electronic storage devices. The most significant of these trends include:
! Capacity: Technologies such as satellites and optical fiber have enormous
capacity to carry information, ranging from thousands of telephone calls to
financial and scientific data to motion video for distance education to highly
detailed images for remote medical diagnosis.
! Digitization: Telecommunications networks are becoming totally digital.
This means that any type of information, including voice and video, may be
sent as a stream of bits.

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! Convergence: The convergence of telecommunications, data processing,
and imaging technologies is ushering in the era of multimedia, in which
voice, data, and images may be combined according to the needs of users
for instruction, collaboration, and research.
! Ubiquity: Advances in wireless technology ranging from satellites to
cellular radio make it possible to provide reliable communications virtually
anywhere.
Among the recent technological innovations driving the above trends are many that can
make rural service more reliable and cheaper to provide such as:
! Wireless technologies: Advances in radio technology such as cellular radio
and rural radio subscriber systems offer affordable means of reaching less
isolated rural customers. These technologies make it possible to serve rural
communities without laying cable or stringing copper wire.
! VSATs: Small satellite earth stations are proliferating in developing regions,
usually for distribution of television signals. However, VSATs can also be
used for interactive voice and data, and for data broadcasting. Examples
include bank networks in remote parts of Brazil and India's NICNET for
governmentdata services.
! Digital compression: Compression algorithms can be used to "compress"
digital voice signals, so that 8 or more conversations can be carried on a 64
kbit "voice channel, thus reducing transmission costs. Compressed digital
video can be used to transmit motion video over as few as 2 telephone lines
(128 kbps), offering the possibility of relatively low cost video for distance
education and training.
! Store-and-forward data: Development organizations seeking cheap ways to
communicate with field projects are using single satellite LEO systems for
electronic messaging. For example, SatelLife uses a "microsatellite" known
as HealthSat for store-and-forward data communications to small terminals

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in Africa.
! Voice Messaging: Voice mail systems can be used to provide "virtual
telephone service" to people who are still without individual telephone
service. Callers can leave messages in rented voice mail boxes, which the
subscribers can retrieve from a pay phone. For example, TeleBahia in
northeastern Brazil is using voice messaging technology to serve small
businesses owners and a similar approach has been used in some US
homeless shelters to enable jobseekers to be contacted by prospective
employers.
These new technologies make possible a range of new services such as
teleconferencing (audio, video, and/or computer conferencing), electronic mail, and
access to remote databases. They also provide new options for delivering both radio and
television signals, which, combined with audio and video cassette recorders, offer both
real time and on-demand access to programs. Applications of teleconferencing for
education and training and data communications for administration, data collection, and
access to databases are referenced below. The literature on mass media applications for
development, particularly for education, is extensive, and not reviewed here. In general, it
has been found that mass media can be effective for both formal and nonformal
education, but that many other factors may influence success such as well-designed and
relevant programs, active participation by learners, and participation by teachers and
other field staff in project planning and implementation (see, for example, Schramm, 1977;
Block et al., 1985; Gwyn, 1983).
One of the important advantages of new telecommunications technologies is that a
variety of services can be delivered using the same transmission systems. For example,
satellites can be used for telephone service, as well as radio and television distribution.
Audio teleconferencing requires very modest incremental investment once telephone
links are installed. With digitized networks, voice, data, and compressed video can all be
carried using very limited bandwidth.

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4. The Role of Telecommunications in Development: An Overview
4.1. The Importance of Information
The theoretical underpinning to research on the role of telecommunications in
development in general is that information is critical to the social and economic activities
that comprise the development process. Information is obviously central to education, but
also to health services, where providers need training as well as advice on diagnosis and
treatment of cases beyond their level of expertise or the capacity of local facilities. But
information is also critical to economic activities, ranging from agriculture to
manufacturing and services.
If information is critical to development, then telecommunications, as a means of
sharing information, is not simply a connection between people, but a link in the chain of
the development process itself. The role of telecommunications in transmitting
information can be particularly significant in rural areas where alternative means of
obtaining and conveying information such as personal contact, transport, and postal
services are likely to be less accessible.
Distance represents time, in an increasingly time-conscious world. In economies
that depend heavily upon agriculture or the extraction of resources (lumber and
minerals), distance from urban markets has traditionally been alleviated only with the
installation of improved transportation facilities, typically roads. Yet transportation links
leave industries without the access to information which is becoming increasingly
important for production and marketing of their commodities.
Another disadvantage faced by many developing countries is economic
specialization. As they strive to diversify their economies, timely access to information
becomes even more critical. In the provision of physical goods and services, rural areas
could only compete across barriers of distance and geography if they had a natural
resource advantage. Telecommunications is also vital to the emerging information sectors
in developing regions. In the provision of information goods and services, reliable

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telecommunications infrastructure can make geography and distance irrelevant. For
example, the National Research Council points out that for Africa, where populations and
economic activities remain largely rural-based, sharing information is vital if Africans are
to contribute to finding solutions to their own development problems:
"Economic development in Africa will depend heavily on the development
of the information sector. Countries will need the ability to communicate
efficiently with local and overseas markets to determine where they many
have comparative advantages for supplying their products to consumers or
to purchase essential imports, based on current prices and services. Many of
the economic development problems facing African countries have scientific
and technological components that will require solutions to be developed in
Africa by African scientists.... Lack of information is a critical constraint"
(National Research Council, 1990).

During the past decade, the role of telecommunications in the development


process has received considerable attention. The ITU carried out a series of studies
beginning with a literature review (Hudson, 1979), followed by a series of case studies on
various developmental applications of telecommunications, which were summarized in
Telecommunications for Development (1983). Further case studies were compiled in
Information, Telecommunications, and Development (1986). The ITU's Maitland Commission
pointed out the importance of telecommunications to development and documented the
gaps in access to telecommunications in the developing world in its 1985 report The
Missing Link. Several studies have identified the social and economic benefits of
telecommunications, such as When Telephones Reach the Village (Hudson, 1984),
Telecommunications and Economic Development (World Bank, 1983, 1994), and Electronic
Byways (Parker and Hudson, 1992).

Wellenius (1984) summarizes and classifies studies on telecommunications and the


economy according to type of analysis and methodology. This classification can also be
applied to research undertaken in the past decade. The approach used here is to examine
general development studies first, followed by broad studies on telecommunications and

10
rural development, and then case and sector studies. The methodologies used are
discussed in the review and analysis.

4.2. Telecommunications and Development: Macro-level Studies


This section considers macro-level studies that examine the role of information and
telecommunications technology on development in general. Although these studies
consider the role of telecommunications in development in general, many include
findings and cite examples relevant for rural development.
In the 1970s, several studies noted a high correlation between economic growth
and telecommunications investment, typically measured in GDP per capita and telephone
sets or lines per 100 population. However, these studies did not answer the chicken-and-
egg question: Did telecommunications investment contribute to economic growth, and/or
did economic growth result in increased telecommunications investment?
In the past fifteen years, there has been considerable interest in the role of
telecommunications in the development process, sparked perhaps by the heightened
visibility of the sector, as technological change and competition have fostered new
facilities and services. Researchers with technical, economic and other social science
backgrounds have attempted to understand and quantify the role of information in
economies. They have been joined by rural development specialists who are asking
whether investment in information infrastructure can contribute to rural economic
growth and diversification.
The first major study to address the causality issue underlying the correlation
between telecommunications investment and economic growth (typically measured by
telephone lines per 100 population and per capita GNP or GDP was by Hardy (1980).
Data from 60 nations over a 13 year period (1960 to 1973) were analyzed using path
analysis and cross-lagged correlation techniques, with time-lagged offsets on one year.
Hardy found that the causal relationship ran in both directions, at a level significantly
higher than could be expected by chance. Of course, telecommunications investment did

11
increase as economies grew, but there was also a small but significant contribution of
telecommunications to economic development. The implication was that early investment
in telecommunications could contribute to economic growth. A causal relationship did
not hold for radios per 1000 as a contributor to per capita GDP growth; it was therefore
postulated that the organizational impact of telecommunications contributed to economic
growth. The study also found that the economic impact of adding telephone lines was
greatest in countries with low teledensity (telephone lines per 100 population).
Hudson, Hardy and Parker applied the Hardy methodology to estimate the
economic impact of installing small satellite earth stations in three groups of developing
countries and a hypothetical rural region. A logarithmic relationship between telephone
density and impact on GDP per earth station was found, so that impact per earth station
increased with lower telephone densities. They suggested that the model could be used to
estimate the impact on national GDP of installing telephone lines and/or thin route
satellite stations in regions of low telephone density (Hudson, Hardy and Parker, 1982).
Parker (1983) also applied these findings to estimate benefits of the U.S. REA
(Rural Electrification Administration) telephone loan program, which provides low cost
loans to rural telephone companies to install and upgrade their networks. Estimating the
economic value per telephone line based on Hardy's findings, he calculated the
consequent reduction to U.S. GDP if these lines had not been installed. He estimated that
the benefits were 6 to 7 times higher than costs to government in interest subsidies.
In 1991, Cronin and colleagues published a study using similar methodology to
address the question: "How does the strong relationship between telecommunications
and economic development occur?" (Cronin et al., 1991, p. 529). Their analysis of 31 years
of US data shows not only that increases in output or GNP level lead to increases in
investment in telecommunications, but that the converse is also true: increases in
telecommunications investment stimulate overall economic growth.
A 1993 study by Cronin and colleagues investigated how telecommunications
contributes to national productivity. It showed that incorporation of telecommunication

12
technology and services into production processes has statistically significant impact in
almost all industries. (Cronin, 1993, p. 690). The analysis includes manufacturing, private
non-farm, and total private business sectors. The findings suggest that investment in
telecommunications infrastructure is causally related to the national total factor
productivity and that contributions to aggregate and sector productivity growth rates
from telecommunications advancements are both quantifiable and substantial (Cronin et
al., 1993, p. 677). They conclude that since 1978, about 25 percent of total direct and
indirect aggregate productivity gains in the U.S. economy resulted from advances in
telecommunications production and enhanced consumption possibilities for end-user
industries.
Some researchers have attempted to identify and quantify the externalities
associated with telecommunications utilization. Leff (1984) analyzed the welfare effects of
investment in telecommunications facilities in developing countries, focusing on their
high information and transaction costs. He notes that lower transaction costs and reduced
uncertainty can increase the efficiency of both markets and administrative organizations.
He concludes from a social benefit-cost analysis that telecommunications projects can
produce significant external economies, and that the welfare consequences of
telecommunications expansion include public-good effects, "notably in a country's
capacity for responding to new problems and opportunities" (Leff, 1984, p. 271).
A 1986 ITU study identified two types of externalities. Subscriber-related
externalities are benefits and costs that accrue to existing subscribers from expansion of
the system, and accrue to all subscribers. The ITU study notes that a property of
telecommunications investments is that each subscriber's welfare rises with the number of
subscribers who have access to the network. Call-related externalities are benefits and
costs that accrue to caller and anyone contacted (ITU, 1986).
Some researchers have attempted to summarize these benefits of
telecommunications investment as found in macro-level and case studies. Saunders,
Warford, and Wellenius (1994) group benefits under 4 categories:

13
! market information for buying and selling;
! transport efficiency and regional development;
! isolation and emergency security;
! coordination of international activity, including business, tourism and
international organization.
Hudson (1984) summarizes the role of telecommunications in socio-economic
development, stating that instantaneous communication can help improve:
! efficiency, or the ratio of output to cost;
! effectiveness, or the quality of products and services; and
! equity, or the distribution of benefits throughout the society.
She lists the following benefits of telecommunications for improving efficiency and
productivity:
! Price information: Producers such as farmers and fishermen can compare
prices in various markets, allowing them to get the highest prices for their
produce, to eliminate dependency on local middlemen, and/or to modify
their products (types of crops raised or fish caught, etc.) to respond to
market demand.
! Reduction of downtime: Timely ordering of spare parts and immediate contact
with technicians can reduce time lost due to broken machinery such as
pumps, tractors, generators, etc.
! Reduction of inventory: Businesses can reduce the inventories they need to
keep on hand if replacements can be ordered and delivered as needed.
! Timely delivery of products to market: Contact between producers and shippers
to arrange scheduling for delivery of products to market can result in
reduced spoilage (for example, of fish or fresh fruit), more efficient
processing and higher prices for produce.
! Reduction of travel costs: In some circumstances,

14
telecommunications may be substituted for travel, resulting in
significant savings in personnel time and travel costs.
! Energy savings: Telecommunications can be used to maximize the efficiency
of shipping so that trips are not wasted and consumption of fuel is
minimized.
! Decentralization: Availability of telecommunications can help to attract
industries to rural areas, and allow decentralization of economic activities
away from major urban areas.

5. Telecommunications and Rural Development


In this section we review literature that focuses specifically on rural areas and rural
development, including aggregate data analysis, field research and case studies.

5.1. Regional Analyses and Case Studies


Using advanced econometric modeling techniques, Hansen et al. (1990) find that
substantial aggregate employment gains are likely to result from investments in
telecommunications and information technologies in Europe's rural economies. They
conclude that the ability of regions to benefit from new investment in telecommunications
varies with rurality, with higher benefits over costs estimated for more rural areas than
for less rural areas. However, it appears that this benefit is reduced for extremely rural
areas, possibly because of their lack of general infrastructure other than
telecommunications and information technologies. This conclusion supports threshold
theories that sustained income take-off will not occur without some minimum level of
development.
Also analyzing EC rural telecommunications projects, Martin and McKeown state
that "... neither EC intervention nor application of ITT is sufficient to address problems of
rural areas without adherence to principles of integrated rural development." (Martin and
McKeown, 1993, p. 145) They explain that integrated rural development is essentially

15
interventionist in nature, and incorporates the following elements:
! a multisectoral approach to development, with measures to promote
sectors other than agriculture;
! economic measures to be paralleled by initiatives in education, health,
training and physical infrastructure investment;
! an attempt to target the most disadvantaged groups in rural areas;
! a requirement for people to become actively involved, not only in
identifying needs and opportunities for development, but also in the
implementation of projects;
! a demand for institutional reform expressed mainly as the devolution of
powers from the national to regional and local levels of administration" (p.
147).
Martin and McKeown cite the example of Donegal, where investment in a digital
network in 1979 has not stimulated any notable economic development. They also note
trends toward centralization of ITT rather than distance-independent decentralization.
"Even where decentralization occurs, the bulk of the jobs, control and decisionmaking,
value added, and expertise remain at head office or in core area locations." They conclude:
"Unless there is minimal infrastructure development in transport, education, health, and
social and cultural facilities, it is unlikely that investments from ITT alone will enable
rural areas to cross the threshold from decline to growth" (p. 151).
This conclusion is echoed by other researchers including Parker and Hudson
(1992), who conclude that telecommunications is a complement in the development
process, i.e. generally, certain levels of other basic infrastructure as well as organizational
activity are required for the indirect benefits of telecommunications to be realized. For
example, Hudson postulates, a well managed decentralized organization such as a
manufacturing enterprise, a tourist development, or a health service will derive more
benefits from telecommunications than a poorly managed or understaffed operation.
Schmandt and colleagues summarize this view: "Telecommunications is a necessary but

16
not sufficient condition for rural economic development." (Schmandt et al., 1990, p. 168)
Parker and Hudson (1992) note that telecommunications may also serve as a
catalyst at certain stages of the rural development process, becoming particularly
important when other innovations are introduced such as improved farming practices,
lines of credit, incentives for decentralization and diversification of the rural economic
base. Examples cited in Electronic Byways (Parker and Hudson, 1992) include the tax
incentives South Dakota used to lure Citibank's credit card operations from New York,
the low wages and tax structures of some Midwest states that have fostered the growth of
telemarketing services there, and pollution controls for Los Angeles that are likely to
stimulate the growth of telecommuting.
Case studies provide much of the evidence on the benefits of telecommunications
in rural development. ITU reports published in 1983 and 1986 summarize the findings of
ITU-supported case studies on the role of telecommunications in agriculture, fisheries,
transport, marketing, and other economic activities. However, methodologies vary, and it
is difficult to extract quantified benefits that could be generalized to other contexts.
Some field studies have analyzed the purposes of calls. Chu and colleagues (1985)
carried out a survey of rural telephone users in Indonesia and Thailand, and found that
residents of villages and semi-rural towns had pressing needs to communicate with
people outside their own surroundings to perform work-related duties, conduct business
transactions, deal with government offices, and reach family members working away
from home. The available telephones were used extensively; three quarters of calls were
long distance. The alternative was to travel long distances to deliver messages.
Kaul (1978) used estimates of costs of transportation alternatives and time lost to
estimate the value of telephone calls in rural India. Mayo and colleagues used similar
methodologies to estimate the value of telephone calls made over a rural satellite network
in Peru. They note that businesses generated about one-third of the calls made over the
network, and that business users estimated that each call saved them about $7.30
compared to alternative means of communication (Mayo et al. 1992, p. 78). The USAID-

17
sponsored Rural Communication Services Project linked seven rural communities, three
via satellite, and four via VHF radio and then via satellite to the national network.
Extensive data were collected and analyzed on the use of the network for telephone calls
and for audio teleconferencing. More than 650 audio teleconferences concerning
agriculture, education, and health were carried out during the project (Mayo et al., 1987).
They estimate that face-to-face training seminars would have cost about twice as much
(Mayo et al, 1992, p. 79).

5.2. Rural Telecommunications Users


Hudson (1992) cites evidence from field interviews in northern Canada, China, the
South Pacific, and Africa that rural telecommunications users can often articulate
precisely the benefits and/or savings in time and effort derived from access to a
telephone. Hudson notes that people who need to communicate quickly or frequently for
their work include entrepreneurs, project managers, and health care providers. In Egypt,
it was found that better educated individuals were more likely to make calls to major
cities and administrative centers, whereas those with little education tended to call only to
nearby villages and towns (Pierce and Jequier, 1983), and in the U.S., Schmandt et al.
(1990) suggest that large farmers and agribusiness benefit most from online agriculture
data. Saunders et al. (1994) cite several studies examining characteristics of telephone
users and purposes of use. For example, a Costa Rican study of rural public call offices
(PCOs) found that villages that benefitted most from the PCOs tended to be larger and
better off economically, with relatively better educated populations engaged in more
progressive agricultural techniques. The PCO users themselves tended to be employed,
but their incomes were not higher than average. In fact, telephone users included a
substantial number of low income residents, although the most frequent callers had
higher than average incomes.
Hudson (1992) states that the most important characteristic of telephone users is
thirst for information. She cites examples from northern Canada of village chiefs without

18
formal education may use the telephone to talk to other chiefs, and villagers who do not
speak the national language or have limited education may rely on intermediaries to
obtain information, such as an extension agent, cooperative manager, or other official who
in turn will use the telephone to obtain the information they need. Thus, Hudson
concludes, although telephone users tend to be better educated and more involved in the
market economy than non-users, literacy and "modernity" are not prerequisites for
telecommunications use. Information seekers may be traditional people concerned about
their families, their work, or problems in their community. They are likely to use
whatever tools are available -- from two-way radios to satellite circuits -- to find the
information they need.
In developing countries, Hardy (1980) found that residential telephones appear to
contribute more to economic development than business telephones. The reason may be
that residential phones are often used for business activities, and are available 24 hours
per day, whereas business phones are available only during work hours. There may also
be a difference between public and private sector use, with many businesses using their
proprietors' home telephones.

5.3. Benefits Related to Distance and Density


Models such as those developed by Hansen (1990) and Hardy (1980) as well as
field research, indicate that economic benefits of telecommunications are related to
distance and density, so that benefits are proportionately greater where telephone density
is low and alternatives to communicate are expensive and/or time consuming.
Where telecommunications services are available, rural people often use them
more heavily and spend more of their disposable income on telecommunications than do
city dwellers. Telecommunications operators frequently find that demand in rural and
remote areas is greater than forecasts based on population alone would indicate. In
northern Canada, Hudson (1984) notes that Indians and Inuit (Eskimos) spend more than
three times as much as their urban counterparts on long distance telephone calls, even

19
though their average income is generally much lower than that of urban Canadians. The
number of long distance calls in some villages in northern Canada increased by as much
as 800 per cent after satellite earth stations replaced high frequency radios. In Alaska, the
installation of small satellite earth stations in villages also sparked tremendous growth in
telephone use. When local telephone exchanges were installed in some villages, long
distance telephone traffic spurted again by up to 350 percent (Hudson, 1990).

5.4. Social Benefits


Many researchers note that there are obvious social benefits of
telecommunications, particularly in rural and isolated areas where other forms of
interaction with distant family members, friends, and colleagues may be infrequent and
time-consuming. The most comprehensive review of these findings is the collection edited
by Pool (1977), although its focus is on industrialized countries. Field research from
developing countries cites examples of rural residents keeping in touch with family
members who have gone to the city or overseas to seek work (such as Egyptians and
Indians to the Arab Peninsula, or South Pacific islanders to New Zealand); families
contacting relatives scattered in many rural communities; and field staff such as nurses
and teachers in rural posts using two-way radios or satellite links to keep in touch with
colleagues and family members.
Moyal describes the social role of the telephone among isolated families in the
Australian Outback: "The role of the telephone [for Australian women] has hence changed
... from an important facility for expediting daily life and transforming the problem of
distance, to an arena where the claims of feeling, care giving, and social support are
explicitly acknowledged" (Moyal, 1992, p. 58). Some researchers refer to social calls
among friends and family as "intrinsic" use, as opposed to "instrumental" use for business
purposes.
Researchers have hypothesized that reducing isolation can help to reduce
personnel turnover. While causal data are difficult to obtain, it appears that

20
communication is at least an important factor. For example, better communications is
cited as one of several factors encouraging reversal of the medical braindrain in
Navrongo, Ghana (SatelLife, February 1994). There is anecdotal evidence from northern
Canada, Alaska, and Outback Australia that the ability to stay in touch with family and
friends makes isolated postings more tolerable, and may contribute to reducing turnover
among field staff. Urban-trained field staff from developing countries have expressed
similar views on the importance of telecommunications in coping with isolation (Hudson,
1984; 1992). It appears that telecommunications is one of several factors that may tend to
reduce staff turnover, with other benefits such as pay bonuses, travel and continuing
education also being important.

5.5. Rural Projects in Industrialized Countries


Several articles review government-sponsored projects designed to extend services
to rural or remote areas, or to demonstrate applications of telecommunications for
development-related activities. The weakness of these reviews is that they are generally
descriptive rather than analytical, and lack data that could contribute to a better
understanding of costs and benefits. A few are mentioned here to show the types of rural
telecommunications projects that have been supported in industrialized countries.
Kerr and Blevis (1984) summarize Canadian satellite projects and demonstrations
on CTS and ANIK B. The purpose of government sponsorship was to contribute to
regional development in health and education using satellite technology which itself was
funded by the Canadian government. Little evaluative information is provided. However,
one pragmatic way of assessing the value of such projects is to determine which were
continued. In fact, several projects which originated during this era are now operational
programs using commercially available satellites and terrestrial networks. They include
Memorial University's telemedicine service in Newfoundland; the Knowledge Network
in western Canada, a radio network run by Cree and Ojibway people in northern Ontario,
and a television network run by Inuit Broadcasting Corporation in the Arctic.

21
In western Europe, the European Community has supported several rural
telecommunications initiatives. STAR (Special Telecommunications Action for the
Regions), is aimed at peripheral regions, to create conditions and provide incentives for
extension of telecommunication services to smaller regions. A major criticism of the
STAR initiative is its bias toward infrastructure, which accounted for about 80 percent of
total expenditure of the program (Martin and McKeown, p. 150). The Telematique
program is designed to promote use of advanced telecommunication services in the
Objective 1 regions (where development is lagging behind the rest of the Community). It
aims to complement the STAR initiative by providing additional support for promotion
of services. The ORA initiative (Opportunities for Rural Areas) is a research and
development initiative aimed to identify the potential opportunities offered by the
application of telematic systems in rural areas, and to identify the technologies and
services required throughout the rural areas of the EC to realize these opportunities. Its
intention is to create a solid basis of knowledge and expertise for subsequent
implementation of suitable telematic systems in specific rural areas (Martin and
McKeown, p. 150).
Taylor and Williams (1990) describe a Scottish project designed to integrate
telecommunication policy with regional development policy through upgrading British
Telecom's network with digital switching and ISDN capability. The Highlands and
Islands Initiative targeted not only existing areas of high economic activity, but also those
locations associated with other development activities. It acts as one of a range of
incentives encouraging relocations into the Highlands and Islands. However, although
there are anecdotal stories of telecommuters working from home, including consultants,
architects and telephone operators, no evaluative study has apparently been released to
date.
Another European-initiated application is telecottages, which originated in
Scandinavia (primarily Denmark and Sweden). These are typically small buildings or
rooms in rural communities equipped with a few personal computers, printers, modems

22
and a fax machine. There are two main variants. Community telecottages provide a range
of services on a nonprofit basis, and are intended to benefit the local community by
providing help to local businesses and farmers. The second type is business telecottages
that resemble city-based business bureaus and provide a range of services on profit-
making basis. Services commonly available at Nordic telecottages are information
retrieval from libraries and data bases; consultancy and ITT training; and access to
teleworking facilities for local people (Qvortrup, 1989). Again, there does not appear to
have been a systematic evaluation of costs and benefits. However, one consistent finding
is that an important element is the resource person who provides training and other
guidance. It appears that other factors are needed for the project to go beyond the
awareness and training phase, such as local entrepreneurs, business experience, and
contacts with potential contractors for rural information services such as data entry and
telemarketing.
In the U.S., the 1990s have seen a resurgence of funding of pilot projects, although
on a much more limited scale than in the 1970s, when NASA, the National Library of
Medicine, and the then Department of Health, Education, and Welfare, among others,
funded numerous projects using telecommunications, particularly experimental satellites,
for rural health and education. The Rural Electrification Administration (REA), now
renamed the Rural Utilities Service, in the Department of Agriculture (USDA) has
established a Distance Learning and Medical Grant Program. The medical projects include
interactive video links, teleradiology, laboratory support, and medical tele-education. The
U.S. Department of Education has allocated more than $80 million to date for distance
education through its Star Schools Program. It supports projects such as the Satellite
Educational Resources Consortium (SERC) that includes school districts, departments of
education, and university educators in 23 states, a statewide interactive video network in
Iowa, and innovative projects to develop and deliver educational programs in inner cities
and rural areas. In 1994, the National Telecommunications and Information
Administration (NTIA) allocated $26 million for infrastructure grants for the planning

23
and construction of telecommunications networks educational, health, library and other
social services. This limited amount is to be stretched by requiring applicants to obtain
matching funds from other sources.
Some states are combining high quality infrastructure with attractive rural settings
to attract "footloose" entrepreneurs such as consultants, architects, and software
developers who appreciate the quality of rural life. (In Colorado, these people are called
"lone eagles"; in Montana, they are known as "modem cowboys.") The Colorado
Advanced Technology Institute (CATI) is providing seed money to selected rural
communities that have proposed using telecommunications as part of their economic
development strategies, and has funded rural gateways to its statewide computer
network, which also provides Internet access (Richardson, 1993).
The U.S. federally-funded projects all require evaluation, and therefore should
provide valuable information on the benefits of rural telecommunications for social
services, and the elements required for successful implementation. However, U.S.
evaluation research in the past has been weak on cost-benefit analysis, focussing more on
usage data.

6. Telecommunications and Rural Sectors


The following is a summary of findings from research on applications of
telecommunications for rural sectoral activities including education, health care, business
and entrepreneurship, and transportation. Impacts specifically related to rural women are
also examined.

6.1. Agriculture
As noted above, access to current market information can enable farmers and
fishermen to get higher prices for their produce than may be available from local
middlemen. Market information is now available electronically in the U.S. The
USDA's Agriculture Marketing Service (AMS) collects and disseminates price and

24
shipping information for agricultural commodities from field offices nationwide via
telephone line and satellite. It disseminates reports based on this information via a VSAT
network. Farmers can access the information on line using a modem, dial toll-free 800
numbers for voice reports, and/or look for summaries redistributed by the mass media.
The primary beneficiaries of this service are thought to be small and medium- sized
farming operations. PRONET and AGRICOLA are private information services that
benefit larger farmers and agribusiness which can afford the access fees (Schmandt et al,
1990).
These types of information services may help farmers negotiate higher prices with
resulting higher revenues than previously. For example, information on market
opportunities apparently resulted in $3 million in additional revenue for watermelon
growers in Florida (Schmandt et al., 1990). Parker et al. (1989) also reported examples of
farmers adjusting production and finding overseas markets as a result of consulting
online databases.
The USDA also operates CIDS (Computerized Information Delivery Service),
which makes available USDA information and state extension service information on line
to individuals with modems as well as to extension services and libraries. However, AMS
and CIDS are underutilized, possibly because they are difficult to use, and some farmers
are resistant to the technology (Schmandt et al, 1990).
In addition to price and user resistance to computer technology, other factors may
be relevant in developing regions such as social or economic constraints prohibiting
farmers from putting information to use. For example, in many parts of Latin America,
peasants have little choice but to sell their crops to local middlemen, even if they know
they would get better prices at regional markets. Also, if rural farmers have no access to
credit, they may not be able to buy improved seeds or fertilizers that they have learned
about from extension agents or other sources (McAnany, 1981). However, there are
examples of profitable use of market information in developing regions ranging from
Brazilian coffee growers contacting the Chicago futures exchange, to farmers in the Nile

25
Delta taking orders from merchants in Alexandria by telephone to Sri Lankan farmers
obtaining market information from Colombo (Hudson, 1992; Saunders et al. 1994).
Logistics can also be important in agriculture and fisheries, where perishable
goods must reach the market before they spoil. Hudson (1984) states that in the Cook
Islands, two-way radio was used to arrange the itinerary of ships dispatched to pick up
fruit so that crops already picked would not be overripe, thereby fetching much lower
prices. In northern Canada, Hudson also notes that Indian lake fishermen use radios to
alert float plane operators when their catch is ready to be flown to urban markets. In the
past, pre-arranged flights were wasted if the catch was too small or the fish were no
longer fresh.

6.2. Education
Perhaps the greatest experience in using telecommunications for development is in
the field of education. Educators were among the first to apply mass media to extend the
range of education, using radio in the 1950s and 1960s for non formal education such as
basic literacy for adults, and for formal education, either by teaching children directly in
classrooms where teachers were unqualified, or by instructing the teachers themselves, so
that they could better teach the students. In the 1970s, educators also began to use
television in countries where it was available, such as American Samoa, India, and Cote
d'Ivoire (Schramm, 1977).
The advent of satellite technology offered an opportunity to distribute educational
programs over an entire country or region. Satellites also provided a reliable means of
interactive communication to link locations that previously had only HF radio or no
telecommunications services at all. The potential of satellites and experiences in North
America with experimental satellites (ATS-1 and ATS-6 in the US, and CTS in the US and
Canada), led distance education specialists to propose projects that would use satellites
for education in developing countries (for an analysis of the North American experience
with experimental satellites in the 1970s, see Hudson, 1990). The two major development

26
activities using satellites for development in the 1980s were the AID rural satellite
program (Tietjen, 1989; Hudson, 1990) and INTELSAT's Project SHARE (Hudson, 1990).
Today, radio is still used extensively for distance education in many developing
countries; while televised courses are more often found in industrialized countries.
However, the major change has been in the growth of interactive applications, ranging
from audio tutorials and student interaction to computer conferencing and in some
limited applications, fully interactive video, typically using video compression. Most of
these applications require very limited bandwidth; even video adequate for some
instructional purposes can use as few as two 64 kbit telephone lines.

Research Findings:
Most research on educational applications of technologies focuses on comparative
effectiveness with face-to-face instruction. Effectiveness of the use of telecommunications
technologies for secondary and post-secondary education is fairly well documented.
Students studying at a distance tend to score about the same as counterparts in face to
face classes. In many cases, they perform better than students in traditional classes.
Witherspoon (1993) suggests two reasons for this result: offsite students are typically
older and more motivated than students on campus; and classes taught using technology
are frequently designed more systematically to create a successful learning experience.
However, Schramm's conclusion in the 1970's that motivated students can learn from
anything from chalkboards to television (Schramm 1977), appears to hold also for more
recent applications such as videoconferencing, multimedia, and computer networking.
Research on the actual costs and benefits of educational technology is much more
limited. Some data comes from corporate users of training networks. For example,
Hewlett Packard's Information Technology Network (ITE-Net) provides interactive voice
and data communication with employees in more than 100 classrooms worldwide. HP
estimates that its Distance Learning System delivers training at one-half the cost of
traditional classes (Portway, 1993).

27
A recent study by Cronin and colleagues addresses the question: "What cost
savings associated with the education sector's usage of telecommunications can be
expected?" Using a translog cost model, Cronin et al. (1994) calculate cost savings in the
U.S. educational services sector due to advances in telecommunications production and
education's consumption of telecommunications for each year from 1963 to 1991.
Cumulative cost savings totaled $76.7 billion in 1991 dollars for U.S. applications.
However, the authors suggest that the full potential of telecommunications as a substitute
for more expensive inputs and processes has not been realized, as education's real usage
of telecommunications has increased by only 1.8 percent per year, less than half the
annual national rate of 3 percent (Cronin et al, 1994, p. 53). They conclude: "Through
distance learning programs, telecommunications may efficiently promote a more
equitable distribution of educational and informational resources among the relatively
resource poor" (Cronin et al., 1994, p. 74).

Four Organizational Models:


At first glance, it may appear that educational needs in the U.S. and other
industrialized countries have little in common with developing countries, which typically
have high illiteracy rates, particularly in rural areas, and shortages of teachers and
facilities. However, in opening hearings on telecommunications in education, U.S.
Congressman David Markey stated: "The need for change in our education system is
evident: massive illiteracy, low SAT scores and an acute shortage of teachers in rural
areas" (U.S. Congress, 1993).
In the U.S., four basic models have been developed to use telecommunications in
education. The curriculum-sharing model links schools so that courses available at one
school can be taught to students at another location. This approach typically connects
students in a local area or county using microwave and now more commonly fiber optic
links between the schools.
The second model may be called the outside expert model; it involves identifying

28
course content that is not available in many rural schools, developing specialized
instructional programming, and delivering the programs to the schools. These projects
are typically regional or national in scope; many use satellites to transmit the courses to
the schools and phone lines for interaction with students.
In the virtual classroom model, content is delivered to students in the workplace
or at home; technologies range from satellite video to interactive audio and computer
conferencing. Examples in the U.S. include the National Technological University (NTU)
which delivers graduate technical courses via satellite to engineers at their workplaces
throughout the country, Mind Extension University, which delivers courses via cable TV,
and the University of Phoenix, which uses online computer conferencing.
A fourth model is the educational broker, which delivers seminars and courses via
satellite from a wide variety of sources. An example is NUTN, the National University
Teleconferencing Network, based in Oklahoma. NUTN offers a wide range of adult and
continuing education programs from many sources (Hudson, 1992a).

Examples of Applications:
The following are additional examples of telecommunications applications for
education and training, emphasizing distance education. The University of the South
Pacific uses a satellite-based audio conferencing network to provide tutorials to
correspondence students scattered in ten island nations of the South Pacific. The
University of the West Indies also offers instruction to students at extension centers
throughout the Caribbean using a combination of satellite and terrestrial audio links
(Hudson, 1990).
Alaska has been a pioneer in using telecommunications for education since the
installation of satellite facilities for telephone service and television distribution in the
1970s. An early activity involved distribution of educational video programs via satellite.
With a limited budget, the state could not afford to produce many video courses.
However, based on teacher requests for supplementary material, it obtained rights to a

29
diverse collection of video programs which were transmitted at night via satellite.
Teachers could set the timers on the school's VCR to tape the programs and use them in
the classroom where appropriate. While this approach does not overcome the problem of
developing appropriate content for different cultures and language groups, it offers a
very low cost way of greatly expanding the educational resources available to village
schools.
Alaska now uses audio and computer conferencing for school administration and
interaction between classes in different communities, interactive digital graphics for
multipoint conferencing, compressed video conferencing on the North Slope, and satellite
video courses with interactive audio from SERC and other sources.
In northern Canada, the Wawatay Native Communications Society has set up an
audio conferencing network enabling Cree and Ojibway people in the villages to talk to
teachers and other students, so that they can complete high school via correspondence,
rather than having to leave their communities to attend regional high schools. Canadian
Inuit have established the Inuit Broadcasting Corporation which transmits TV programs
via satellite across the North, including programs using puppets to teach Inuit children in
their own language about health, hygiene, and northern living; and programs for teens
and adults on Inuit culture and skills for survival in a changing world.
In Australia, the School of the Air now uses computer conferencing as well as voice
via digital microwave and HF radio to reach children studying by correspondence on
isolated homesteads. The Tanami Network, a satellite-based videoconferencing network
using 128 kbit compressed video, links four aboriginal communities with each other and
with Alice Springs and Darwin. The aboriginal operators hope to cover costs by selling
time to government agencies for distance education, training, and consultation with rural
communities to save the time and expense of transport for field visits and meetings
(Catlin, 1992).
Other applications of telecommunications supplement classroom instruction. The
Buddy System in Indiana uses computer conferencing to enable students at home to

30
access online services, and to communicate with each other and with their teachers.
BigSky Telegraph, based in Montana, enables students and teachers to exchange
information and download course modules over an electronic mail network. North
American students now interact through the Internet with counterparts in eastern Europe
and Russia, as well industrialized countries including Australia, New Zealand, western
European countries, and Japan.
Using voice messaging and voice response technology, some U.S. students can find
out about homework assignments and school information, parents can be contacted about
student absences, and families can be notified about school activities, meetings, and
emergencies. Voice mail distribution lists enable PTA committees to update members and
students to organize events (Wilson, 1992).
Educators are using telecommunications to reach adult students. The Open
University model pioneered in the United Kingdom has been replicated in various forms
for correspondence learning in many countries (Commonwealth of Learning, 1993) In the
U.S., the Mind Extension University (ME/U) cable TV network reaches more than 21
million subscribers with college-level programs. The University of Phoenix Online (UOP)
offers computer-mediated instruction in business courses, with a degree program offered
completely online.

6.3. Health Care


Telecommunications is used for three different functions in support of health care
delivery:
! consultation: to give advice to rural health workers, or directly to isolated
patients;
! training: of health care workers;
! education: of target populations including expectant mothers, mothers of
young children, groups susceptible to contagious diseases, etc.

31
Consultation:
Telecommunications has been used since the early days of HF radio to support
health care delivery. For example, Australians originated the Flying Doctors, a medical
service which operated an HF network to give advice to isolated homesteaders in the
Outback. The Australian Royal Flying Doctor Service still operates a telecommunications
support network using public telephone service and a dedicated HF radio network. The
model of combining telecommunications with transportation to provide health services in
isolated areas has been emulated by flying doctor services in East Africa, for example, in
Kenya, Tanzania, and Malawi.
Two-way radio networks are used in many developing countries to support
isolated paraprofessional health workers (Hudson, 1983). More reliable networks relying
on terrestrial systems or satellites are also used for medical consultation in developing
regions. An audio conferencing satellite network is used in Alaska for daily consultation
between village health workers and physicians in regional hospitals, on dedicated
channels of Alascom's commercial Aurora satellite, which is also used for public
telephone service and broadcasting distribution in Alaska (Hudson, 1990). The
conferencing network was designed to enable health workers to listen in on the daily
"Doctor Call," as it was found during experiments using NASA satellites in the 1970s, that
health workers learned and applied information gained from the shared audio channel
(Hudson and Parker, 1973).

Training:
Telecommunications networks can also be used for training and continuing
education of health workers. The Peru Rural Communications Services Project sponsored
by USAID connected health workers in the eastern jungle of San Martin to Lima via VHF
radio and satellite links (Hudson, 1990; Tietjen, 1989). The Alaska satellite network is also
used for continuing education of village health workers. In Guyana, HF radio has been
used for grand rounds presentations from Georgetown and other hospital locations

32
(Hudson, 1983).

Education:
Numerous projects have used communication technology in support of health
education, much of which is targeted to women as expectant mothers, mothers of small
children, and community residents. Successful campaigns have used a variety of media
from posters to radio and television, depending on the message and the resources
available (cf. Black, 1985; Clift, 1986). Interactive communication is less common, but may
be used for administrative support and for follow up with health workers and project
staff.
In general, it has been found that mass media messages plus interpersonal
communication are needed to effect changes in behavior as well as attitude, for example
in oral rehydration therapy, in which the mother is taught to feed a mixture of clean
water, salt and sugar to children with diarrhea (Meyer, Foote and Smith, 1983). Similar
strategies are now being used for AIDS prevention.

Administrative and Professional Support:


To the above categories can be added supported provided by interactive networks
for administrative functions, such as ordering of medical supplies and scheduling field
visits; data collection from the field; and access to medical journals for research and
reference. For example, SatelLife of Cambridge, Massachusetts, operates 2 store-and-
forward satellites, Healthnet I and Healthnet II, with 16 stations licensed in Africa. Field
reports from the Gambia cited improve efficiency of collecting epidemiological data from
vaccine trials using Healthnet instead of a person from the Ministry of Health traveling
500 km every week to pick up data. Similarly, in Cameroon, Healthnet is used for logistics
coordination, administration and communication, instead of someone traveling from
province to province (SatelLife News, May 94).

33
North American Research:
The health care environment in the rural U.S. would at first glance appear to differ
dramatically from conditions in the developing world. However, a 1990 Office of
Technology Assessment (OTA) study cited three problems specific to residents of U.S.
rural areas:
! health indicators: a disproportionate number of rural people suffer from
chronic illnesses; the infant mortality rate is higher than in urban areas; the
number of deaths from injuries is dramatically higher;
! distance from care: lack of transportation and few local providers make it
difficult to reach health care facilities;
! poverty: poverty is higher in rural areas than in the nation as a whole
(quoted in Witherspoon, p. i, 1990).
These factors have contributed to U.S. initiatives to use telecommunications in
rural health care. Generically, these applications are referred to as "telemedicine,"
although some researchers and practitioners prefer to use that term to refer to
consultative uses, and the term "telehealth" to refer to applications for medical education
and administration. Although diagnostic applications have the most visibility,
administrative tasks such as claims processing may yield the greatest cost savings. New
services offer the possibility of enabling pharmacies, hospitals, physicians and dentists to
exchange data electronically with claims processors using regular telephone lines and
public packet-switching networks (Stewart, 1994b).
There is little evaluative material on the effectiveness of telemedicine as a means of
providing care -- both in terms of clinical effectiveness and cost-effectiveness.
Witherspoon (1993) suggests the reasons are partly that most telemedicine projects are
fairly recent, and the current emphasis in medicine is on outcomes research, including
quality, appropriateness, and cost-effectiveness of care is also recent. For example, the
U.S. Public Health Service Medical Treatment Effectiveness Program was established only
in 1989.

34
However, there is evidence of many successful projects in the 1970s and 1980s; yet
despite the fact that, in general, the technology used achieved its purpose of diagnosis,
consultation or education, there is still no widespread implementation (Rockoff, 1975;
Higgins et al. 1984). Several factors are cited by various authors:
! resistance from doctors who feel threatened by alternative approaches;
! the initial expense of setting up some telemedicine systems is high, and
costs are hard to justify;
! reimbursement issues: insurers may not reimburse remote providers;
! legal liability issues;
! many cost savings cited by telemedicine advocates accrue to patients only --
e.g. avoiding transportation and hotel expenses, lost days of work, etc.
Escalating medical costs and the shortage of rural physicians are creating
incentives for the health care sector to resolve some of the issues that have hindered
telemedicine implementation. For example, criteria have been developed in several states
to determine when reimbursement should be authorized (Telemedicine, 1994). Some issues
such as whether physicians will be paid for consultation are important in a fee- for-service
system, but in a government operated system this may not be an issue. However, there
may be another problem: savings in personnel time may not be an important issue if the
system is in the public sector, and there are not effective incentives for cost control.

6.4. Employment and Entrepreneurship


Much of the research on the role of telecommunications in development has
focused on the benefits to businesses in terms of improved efficiency and access to market
information (see above). There are also numerous professional and academic publications
on the role of telecommunications and information technology in improving business
productivity in general that will not be reviewed here. Recent studies on rural
telecommunications policy in the U.S. present examples and case studies of rural business
applications and benefits. Schmandt et al. (1990) and Parker and Hudson (1992) examine

35
rural firms in manufacturing, retail trade, and telecommunications-intensive services such
as software support, consulting, catalog operations and telemarketing.
Rural businesses in the U.S. are increasingly using telecommunications networks
for competitive advantage. In manufacturing, telecommunication is used for inventory
and management systems; in retailing, telecommunications networks link information
systems to track inventory, monitor sales, and link branches. For example, Walmart, the
world's biggest retailer, which is largely rural-based, uses a network of 1600 VSATs to
link its branches with headquarters in Arkansas and with suppliers and distribution
centers, as well as for training and updating personnel.
Credit card companies provide data bases and customer support from small towns
in the Midwest, as do hotel and car rental reservation systems. Catalog companies such as
Land's End and Cabela's also use telecommunications to operate from rural communities
in the Midwest. Mrs. Field's Cookies links it operations in several countries to its global
headquarters in Park City, Utah. Rural tourism industries such as ski resorts and fishing
lodges depend on telecommunications-based reservation systems to bring them business.
The California State Parks use a computerized reservation system accessible by telephone
to allocate campsites (Parker and Hudson, 1992).
The significance of telecommunications in attracting rural businesses is of interest
to rural development planners in North America and Europe. Hepworth (1990) notes that
firms are becoming more flexible in their location and production as they become more
information intensive. He stresses the importance of the communicability of information
capital in his study of the geography of information. Several recent U.S. studies have
examined criteria for business location. In a Deloitte and Touche study, executives of
relocation companies ranked availability of high quality telecommunications fourth in
New Jersey and sixth nationwide among more than 20 relocation criteria. Other highly
ranked factors were access to airports and highways, labor costs, and proximity to major
markets (quoted in Parker and Hudson, 1992). Schmandt et al. (1990) also cite
transportation costs, an adequate labor force and adequate infrastructure including water,

36
power, and telecommunications among frequently cited location criteria.
While developing countries do not have the range of rural economic activities
found in industrialized countries, there is evidence that reliable telecommunications for
reservations can be important for rural tourism such as game parks in Africa, trekking in
Nepal, and beach resorts in the Caribbean and South Pacific.

6.5. Travel, Transportation and Energy


As noted above, telecommunications offers important benefits in overcoming the
distance penalty that hampers business activities and service providers in rural and
remote areas. Research on this topic generally focuses on travel/transport substitution,
i.e. the ability to obtain or transmit information electronically, rather than through
personal travel or through the postal service. Benefits are measured in terms of time
saved, and sometimes converted to monetary amounts using estimates of the value of
time in terms of wage estimates. Another approach is to estimate the value of energy
saved if the number of trips could be reduced.2 (This methodology is commonly used in
studies of telecommuting trials in industrialized countries.)
For example, the ITU funded studies which examined potential energy savings in
developing countries if telecommunications could be used to coordinate logistics, so that
trips would not be wasted (cited in Pierce and Jequier, 1983; ITU, 1986; ITU, 1988). Other
case studies such as those by Chu et al. (1985) and Mayo et al. (1992) estimate time saved
by rural telephone users compared to other modes of communication. Hudson (1992)
found that rural users also took into consideration time wasted by lack of information,
such as shopkeepers and pharmacists making trips to town for supplies, only to find that
the goods were not available, or field workers finding that rural clients such as health
aides or farmers were not there when they arrived.
Of course, benefits of saving time can extend beyond wage estimates. In health and

2
. Some of the references in this section are found in different sections of the
bibliography, as transportation trade-offs or substitution is only one of the issues they address.

37
disaster communications, time savings can translate into saving lives by getting expert
advice or requesting evacuation, as noted in the Maitland report (1984). Users of
HealthNet note the benefits of using satellite communications rather than personnel to
collect field data, but do not estimate the benefits to the health care delivery system
beyond savings in personnel and fuel costs (SatelLife, May 1994). Time savings may also
enable rural businesses to compete in regional or national markets, as evidenced by some
of the Nordic telecottage successes and examples of rural businesses cited by Parker et al.
(1989), Schmandt et al. (1990), and Parker and Hudson (1992).
The value of time is perhaps most easily measured when money is directly
involved. Hudson and York used the time value of money to estimate what benefits could
accrue to developing country financial institutions by joining the SWIFT network. Here
the comparison was not with physical movement of money, but with telex transfer. Using
data from Brazil, the study showed that by using the faster and more reliable SWIFT
network, a bank could recover its costs of SWIFT usage in a very short time by being able
to precisely time its transactions of currency transfers to foreign banks (Hudson and York,
1988).

6.6. Studies on Women and Rural Telecommunications


In many parts of the developing world, women do much of the agricultural work.
If crops are sold, they may also take the crops to market, or negotiate the price for their
crops or livestock with merchants. In such cases, the benefits of telecommunications in
getting information about prices and markets, and getting expert advice from extension
agents should apply to women. Mass media, such as farm radio forums, which were
developed in Canada, and then adopted in India and other developing countries, have
reached women as well as men with agricultural information (cf. Atkins, 1990).
Meerbach (1991) suggests that some rural women are using public telephones in
Senegal, but that access means more than availability of a telephone in the village.
Women may not have identified business contacts to call, may not be able to afford to call,

38
and may not even know how to place a telephone call. Meerbach emphasizes that before
implementing a telecommunications system, it is imperative to understand the economic,
social, and psychological background of the target group, as well the power relationships
within that setting.
A study by Lebeau (1990) examines payphone use in four rural villages in
Botswana. It was determined that the vast majority of payphone users (72 percent) were
women. The report concluded that telecommunications provision can affect men and
women differently, and that usage patterns differed between male and female. For the
four Botswana villages, women made and received more calls than men, but spent less
per call. Men were more likely to choose an alternative to payphone use that involved
travel, and was more costly. On average, female telephone users were younger than
males, and appeared to have different communities of interest.
The authors point out that this research was based on secondary analysis, which
limited the study and the implications that could be drawn from it on benefits to women
and constraints, such as access to transportation. They suggest that "gender sensitive"
research techniques be used in future, such as inclusion of more detailed categories on
purpose of call, realistic alternatives to phone use, occupation categories that apply to
women, etc.
While studies on direct benefits to women are few, it appears that women do
benefit either as participants (teachers, health care workers, farmers, etc.) or indirectly
through information that benefits them as mothers, entrepreneurs, employees,
community residents, etc.

7. Implications for Planning


7.1. Findings from the Research
Findings from research and pilot projects in rural and developing regions show
that telecommunications can contribute to social and economic development. There has
been progress in developing models that can predict quantitative financial benefits of

39
investment in rural telecommunications, typically based on the theoretical underpinnings
of the role of information in economic activities. There is also substantial evidence on
benefits that result from specific applications of telecommunications in various sectors
such as some forms of distance education, medical consultation, administrative support,
and transport substitution. Some studies also conclude that benefits are proportionately
greater in areas of low teledensity, but it is not clear whether this is because each added
increment of telecommunications is a greater percentage of the installed base than in high
teledensity areas.
Many authors also note that telecommunications should not be seen as a panacea.
A more positive statement of this conclusion is that telecommunications is necessary but
not sufficient for development. Other forms of infrastructure including transportation,
water, and electrification are important, as may be other factors such as labor costs, skills
and reliability; tax or other concessions or incentives; and proximity to major markets.
Thus, there is no simple formula that can safely predict quantifiable benefits of
investing in telecommunications in a specific rural area, because many factors may
influence the extent of the impact of better access to information. They include:
! existing and planned economic initiatives;
! well organized public services and or private sector activities;
! existence of other essential infrastructure;
! participation of users in planning location and features of
telecommunications facilities to eliminate cultural, linguistic, or gender-
based barriers;
! administrative systems for development activities emphasizing supervision
and feedback;
! employee training where telecommunications facilities are installed to
support sector activities;
! accessibility of telecommunications facilities for personal use.

40
7.2. The Need for Integrated Planning
The general conclusion for planning that emerges from this review is that
telecommunications planning cannot be done in isolation if the intent is to derive
maximum benefits for rural development. Planning must be integrated across sectors; i.e.
it is necessary to involve several agencies in addition to telecommunications, representing
sectors such as education, health and social services, agriculture, and economic
development. This may not be an easy task because technical planners and development
planners do not often intersect, and probably think they have little to say to each other.
However, there are numerous examples of such integrated planning activities in North
America that may serve as useful models (see Parker and Hudson, 1992).
To summarize, for coordinated communications planning to occur:
! telecommunications administrations must be informed about national
priorities and development plans;
! national planners must be made aware of the importance of
telecommunications infrastructure to national development;
! resources for extension and improvement of facilities must be allocated to
the telecommunications sector, and resources for training and utilization of
facilities must be included in the sector budgets;
! potential users must be made aware of the services available and how they
could benefit from them.

7.3. New Demands and Opportunities


The examples of applications reviewed above and the availability of new
technologies and services imply that planners of telecommunications for rural areas of
developing countries will need to respond to demands for services beyond simple voice
telephony, although it is likely to remain the first priority. Among the implications are:
! Urban and Rural: The availability of relatively low cost radio and satellite
technologies for serving rural areas makes it possible to reach even the most

41
remote locations, and to base priorities for service on need rather than
proximity to the terrestrial network.
! Voice and Data: While basic voice communication is still the first priority,
many users now have requirements for data communications as well,
particularly facsimile and relatively low speed data communications. Thus
transmission channels must be reliable enough to handle data as well as
voice traffic.
! Video: There is growing demand for video for distance education and
training purposes. The availability of compressed video may make this
option much less costly than when full bandwidth was required.

7.4. Universal Access


Universal access to telecommunications in developing countries may be measured
in terms of availability in all settlements above a certain population threshold; availability
within a certain distance of all residents; or minimal time required to reach a telephone. It
is not necessary to adopt one standard for all rural regions. However, access criteria and
facilities can be adjusted depending on demand and technological innovation.
In order to ensure that telecommunications technologies and services can be put to
optimal use for rural development, the basic goal should be to provide in rural and
remote areas affordable access to telecommunications and information services comparable
to those available in urban areas. The underlying rationale, as found in the literature
reviewed in this report, is that universal access to information is critical to the
development process. It should be noted that this goal is in effect a "moving target": it
does not specify a particular technology, but assumes that as facilities and services
become widely available in urban areas, they should also be extended to rural areas.

42
8. Recommendations to the World Bank
8.1. Support for Rural Telecommunications
Based on the evidence presented in this study, the Bank should make rural
telecommunications a priority in the telecommunications sector. The Bank should ensure
that:
! every telecommunications loan includes a requirement for
telecommunications investment in rural areas;
! every loan requires an external evaluation (i.e. by researchers who are not
employed by the telecommunications administration) of the socio-economic
impact of the rural project(s). (For research guidelines, see below.)

8.2. Access to Telecommunications


The studies reviewed in this report present convincing evidence that
telecommunications contributes to socio-economic development. Based on this evidence,
the Bank should encourage developing countries to adopt a goal of universal access to
telecommunications.
Steps the Bank could take to help developing countries achieve this goal include:
a. recommend that countries adopt a definition of access. Access may be defined
using a variety of criteria such as:
! population: e.g. a telephone for every permanent settlement with a
minimum population;
! distance: e.g. a telephone within x kilometers of all rural residents;
! time: e.g. a telephone within an hour's walk or bicycle ride of all rural
residents.
b. include investment in rural telecommunications as part of any
telecommunications loan package (see above);
c. encourage use of technologies particularly appropriate for rural applications

43
because of design and/or cost in any rural project. Examples include:
! wireless local loops;
! PC-based and other small digital switching systems;
! small satellite terminals;
! voice messaging systems for virtual telephone service;
! low cost videoconferencing such as ISDN-based systems for education and
training;
! renewable energy sources such as solar power and wind power.
d. propose a "report card" that countries could use to gauge their own progress
toward these goals, and could be used for comparison across countries. A draft of
such a report card is included as Appendix B.

8.3. Socio-Economic Research


8.3.1 Macrolevel Economic Studies
This literature review examines studies conducted to date on the role of
telecommunications in the development process. While these studies do provide useful
insights, in general, they do not focus on either developing countries or rural regions.
The Bank should fund a study that specifically addresses the contribution of
telecommunications to economic development in countries or regions:
! below a certain threshold of economic development (e.g. Upper Middle
Income and below, using Bank indicators);
! with a high percentage of population in rural or remote areas (e.g. with
more than 50 percent of the population in non-urban areas).

8.3.2 Macrolevel Social Impact Studies


Existing macrolevel studies focus on economic impacts of telecommunications
investment. However, case studies show strong evidence of the impact of
telecommunications on education and social services. The Bank should fund a study that

44
develops a model for developing countries for forecasting the impact of access to
telecommunications on:
! education including instruction at various levels (primary through higher
education) and various populations (e.g. children and adults);
! training to improve work skills or teach new skills;
! health care delivery;
! emergency services such as natural disaster relief, epidemics, etc.

8.3.3. Telecommunications as a Complement in the Development Process


Several authors have argued that telecommunications investment alone will not
contribute to socio-economic development. This finding is important not only in assessing
projects but in providing guidance to telecommunications planners who need to know
what priority to give to telecommunications, and what conditions are necessary in other
sectors for telecommunications to contribute to development.
The Bank should fund a policy paper that addresses:
! "take-off" indicators for other sectors such as agriculture, entrepreneurial
activity, education, health services, that are required before
telecommunications is likely to make a significant contribution to rural
development;
! planning techniques that can be used to prioritize regions or sectors for
telecommunications investment;
! strategies for involving representatives of these sectors in the
telecommunications planning process.

8.4 Evaluation
8.4.1 Methodology
This report reviews a selection of the numerous case studies that have been carried
out since 1980 on the role of telecommunications in a particular project or region.

45
However, it is very difficult to generalize from these studies because the research
methodologies they use are so diverse. Field research obviously poses problems in
imposing a research design on an existing activity, limited availability of data, limited
resources to collect data or train field researchers, etc. However, there are methodologies
for research design and data collection that could be applied more systematically to field
research in telecommunications.
The Bank should fund a study which presents research methodologies for field
studies including:
! research design
! types of data to be collected
! methods of data collection
! data analysis techniques.
The study should include examples of how these methodologies can be applied in
field settings, drawing from existing cases where possible.

8.4.2 Evaluation of Recent Projects


Several factors are contributing to increased investment in rural
telecommunications in many countries. As discussed in the introduction to this paper,
these factors include:
! technological changes that are reducing costs of rural networks;
! structural changes in the telecommunications sector that are providing
incentives for telecommunications investment;
! recognition that telecommunications and information technologies can play
a significant role in development (e.g. "information infrastructure"
initiatives).
Yet we know very little about the impact of this recent investment, or of recent
sector-specific telecommunications projects. The Bank should therefore fund a series of
evaluation studies on selected recent projects to evaluate the impact of the projects on a

46
particular sector or on rural socio-economic development. The evaluation studies should:
! apply the methodologies identified above;
! determine specific quantifiable benefits of the projects;
! identify factors which contributed to the achievement of benefits or
hindered the project from achieving such benefits;
! identify findings that appear generalizable to other applications in the same
sector or in similar geographic or demographic settings.

8.4.3 Additional Research Topics


There are several additional research topics on rural telecommunications that merit
investigation. The Bank could support studies on the following:

a. Appropriate technologies:
Research on appropriate technologies for developing country communications, such as:
! reducing the capital cost of solar power for telecommunications
! designing effective backup systems
! designs that can withstand harsh environments such as extremes of
temperature, lack of air conditioning, humidity, dust
! inexpensive modular equipment for distance education
! remote polling for billing and monitoring outages.

b. Pricing models:
Models that are designed to recover costs of rural capital and operating costs, but meet
important social criteria for access Examples include:
! free emergency service
! off peak pricing
! pricing based on communities of interest.

47
c. Impact on Women in Development
Development agencies have identified the role of women in development as an
important priority. To date, there is little research on the impact of telecommunications,
particularly on women in rural regions of developing countries. (Existing studies are
reviewed in section 6.6). Additional research is needed on telecommunications usage by
rural women in different cultures, and factors that appear to affect both usage by women
and the indirect benefits of telecommunications for rural women in general, for example,
in terms of improved maternal and child care, education and opportunities, and market
prices for rural products.
A particular priority for countries is improving female literacy. The Bank could
fund research on applications of telecommunications for rural literacy, either through
direct instruction of rural girls and women, or through teacher training and other support
for female literacy campaigns.

8.5 Dissemination of Findings


8.5.1 Publications
This combined set of studies, including macrolevel studies, a guide on field
research methodology, and case studies on recent projects could be compiled into a book
which would be a companion volume to Telecommunications and Economic Development. It
would make a valuable contribution to the field, and could be an important resource for
telecommunications planners, rural and economic development planners, and funding
agencies and investors.

8.5.2 Workshops and Presentations


The content of these studies could be presented at conferences and other
professional meetings of the constituencies identified above, namely telecommunications
planners, rural and economic development planners, and funding agencies and investors.

48
The Bank could also sponsor regional workshops, possibly in collaboration ith
regional organizations or professional associations, to present the findings of the research.

8.5.3. Rural Telecommunications Research Awards


! Technology Design:
The Bank and the ITU could sponsor a design competition, with awards for
technology designs that address the need for low capital cost, high reliability in
harsh conditions, flexibility (to allow upgrades in capacity with increased
demand), and ease of maintenance.
! Research and Evaluation:
The Bank could sponsor annual awards for the best research paper that addresses
theory, methodology, or field research on the role of telecommunications in socio-
economic development. The studies would have to focus on developing countries.
Results could be published and disseminated as described above.

49
APPENDIX A: SOURCES CONSULTED

Sources consulted for the literature review included:

! Data Bases: Searched for period 1983-present

ABI/Inform
CAB Abstracts
Economic Literature (Econ Lit)
ERIC (Educational Research Information Clearinghouse)
Social Sciences Index
U.S. Government Printing Office

! Development Agencies, Research Institutions and Non-Governmental


Organizations :

Academy for Educational Development, Washington, DC


CIDA (Canadian International Development Agency)
CIRCIT (Centre for Research on Communication and Information
Technology), Melbourne, Australia
Clearinghouse on Development Communication, Washington, DC
Commonwealth of Learning, Vancouver, Canada
East-West Center Communications Institute, Honolulu, HI
Institute for International Research, Washington, DC
International Development Research Centre, Ottawa
International Telecommunication Union, Geneva
International Institute of Communications, London
United Nations:
UNESCO, Paris
United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia
and the Pacific (ESCAP)
United Nations Economic Commission for Africa (UNECA)

50
United Nations Economic Commission for Latin America and
the Caribbean (ECLAC)
U.S. Agency for International Development, Washington, DC
U.S. Department of Agriculture
U.S. Department of Commerce: National Telecommunications and Information
Administration
U.S. Office of Technology Assessment
World Bank, Washington, DC

51
APPENDIX B:
A TELECOMMUNICATIONS DEVELOPMENT REPORT CARD

To achieve universal access to telecommunications, we need to agree upon targets


and monitor progress toward achieving them. We might borrow an approach from the
health care community. For example, the World Health Organization (WHO) has set
goals for the eradication of certain diseases, and collects and publishes annual data on the
number of cases of these diseases in each country. The World Bank, possibly in
conjunction with the ITU, could publish a similar "report card", with the goal of achieving
universal access to telecommunications (or eradicating isolation) by the year 2000.
Proposed indicators to monitor for the report card include:
Availability of Service:
! national teledensity: While imperfect, these data are routinely available from
telecommunications administrations. To provide a better estimate of
urban/rural access without thrashing out a universal definition of rural
(rural India and China are very different from rural Papua New Guinea or
Sudan), these data could be disaggregated to show:
! teledensity in cities over x million population (or largest city where there is only
one major urban center in the country);
! teledensity in the rest of the country (While this figure will overestimate rural
teledensity because it will include major towns, its advantage is that data
are likely to be available to make this calculation3).
Quality of Service:
! average length of time to obtain service: urban and non-urban;

3
The ITU's World Telecommunication Development Report includes data on the largest
city and rest of country. These data are themselves quite striking in revealing disparities in
access, but it would be useful to remove cities completely to get a better estimate of rural
communications, particularly in countries such as India and China which have many large
cities.

52
! average time to repair service: urban and non-urban;
! percentage of lines connected to digital switches;
! percentage of lines with direct dial service (subscriber trunk dialing): national
and international;
! percentage of multiparty lines: urban and nonurban.
Price:
Here the relevant variable is not absolute cost of access but cost relative to the income of
the users. For example, if a line costs more to install than a family's annual income,
telecommunications cannot really be considered accessible.
! Price of installation: as percentage of annual average per capita income;
! Monthly connection charge: as percentage of monthly average per capita
income;
! price of 3 minute 100 km. domestic daytime call: as percentage of monthly
average per capita income;
! price of 3 minute 500 km. domestic daytime call as percentage of monthly
average per capita income.
Mobile communications:
! percentage of land area covered by mobile services;
! percentage of population in areas covered by mobile services.
Internet access:
! number of Internet gateways: per million population;
! percentage of universities with Internet connection.

53
TELECOMMUNICATIONS AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT:

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY

This bibliography is organized according to several categories. It begins with


references on telecommunications and development in general. It then lists sources
specifically on telecommunications and rural development, including studies concerning
both developing countries and rural regions of industrialized countries. The third section
includes case studies on developing countries and rural regions. The final section includes
illustrative studies on the role of telecommunications in various sectors associated with
rural development, including agriculture; education and training; health care and
disaster communication; business, employment and entrepreneurship; travel,
transportation and energy; and women in development.

The bibliography consists primarily of works published since 1980, with an


emphasis on more recent reports and studies. Publications from before 1980 are included
that are considered particularly important in presenting theory or analysis of critical
issues and applications.

1. Telecommunications and Development: General

Antonelli, Christiano. "The Diffusion of Advanced Telecommunications in Developing


Countries." Paris: OECD, 1991.

Ayish, Muhammad I. "International Communication in the 1990s: Implications for the


Third World." International Affairs, Vol. 68, July 1992, pp. 487-510.

Black, Maggie ed. "On the People's Wavelength: Communications for Social Change."
Unicef News, Issue 114, No. 4, 1982.

"Brother Can You Spare a Line?" The Economist, vol. 289, December 17, 1983, pp. 78-79.

Casey-Stahmer, Anna, et. al. Critical Aspects of the Establishment and Utilization of Satellite
Services for Africa. A Report for the Academy for Educational Development, April 1984.

Childers, Erskine B. "The New Age of Information -- What Kind of Participation?"


Development, Vol. 2, 1990, pp. 11-16.

Chowdary, T.H. "Telecommunications Restructuring in Developing Countries."


Telecommunications Policy, Vol. 16, No. 9, December 1992, pp. 699-704.

Cronin, Francis J., Elisabeth K. Colleran, Paul L. Herbert, and Steven Lewitzky.

54
"Telecommunications and Growth: The Contribution of Telecommunications
Infrastructure Investment to Aggregate and Sectoral Productivity." Telecommunications
Policy, Vol. 17, No. 9, December 1993a, pp. 677-690.

Cronin, Francis J., Edwin B. Parker, Elisabeth K. Colleran, and Mark A. Gold.
"Telecommunications Infrastructure and Economic Development." Telecommunications
Policy, Vol. 17, No. 6, August 1993b, pp. 415-430.

Cronin, Francis J., Edwin B. Parker, Elisabeth K. Colleran, and Mark A. Gold.
"Telecommunications Infrastructure and Economic Growth: An Analysis of Causality."
Telecommunications Policy, Vol. 15, No. 6, December 1991, pp. 529-535.

Development Communication Report, Vol. 3, No. 62, 1988.

Development Communication Report. Vol. 1, No. 64, 1989.

Development Communication Report. Vol. 3, No. 70, 1990.

Development Communication Report. No. 72-75, 1991.

Gupta, P.P. "Application of Information Technology for Development in India."


Development, Vol. 2, 1990, pp. 66-69.

Hardy, Andrew P. "The Role of the Telephone in Economic Development."


Telecommunications Policy, Vol. 4, No. 4, December 1980, pp. 278-286.

Hudson, Heather E., Douglas Goldschmidt, Edwin B. Parker and Andrew P. Hardy. The
Role of Telecommunications in Socio-Economic Development: A Review of the Literature with
Guidelines for Further Investigations. Geneva: International Telecommunication Union,
1979.

Hudson, Heather E. A Bibliography on Telecommunications and Socio-Economic Development.


Norwood, MA: Artech, 1988.

Hudson, Heather E. Communication Satellites: Their Development and Impact. New York:
Free Press, 1990.

Hudson, Heather E. "Developing Countries' Communications: Overcoming the Barriers of


Distance." Froehlich/Kent Encyclopedia of Telecommunications, Vol. 4, 1992, pp. 351-368.

Hudson, Heather E., Andrew P. Hardy and Edwin B. Parker. "Impact of Telephone and
Satellite Earth Station Installation on GDP." Telecommunications Policy, Vol. 6, No. 4,

55
December 1982, pp. 300-307.

Hudson, Heather E. and Lynn York. "Generating Foreign Exchange in Developing


Countries: The Potential of Telecommunications Investments." Telecommunications Policy,
September 1988.

International Development Research Centre. Sharing Knowledge for Development: IDRC's


Information Strategy for Africa. Ottawa: IDRC, 1989.

International Telecommunication Union. Information, Telecommunications, and Development.


Geneva: ITU, 1986.

International Telecommunication Union. World Telecommunication Development Report.


Geneva: ITU, March 1994.

Jussawalla, Meheroo and Donald M. Lamberton, eds. Communication Economics and


Development. Elmsford, NY: Pergamon, 1982.

Jussawalla, Meheroo, Donald Lamberton, and Neil Karunaratne, eds. The Cost of Thinking:
Information Economies of Ten Pacific Countries. Norwood, NJ: Ablex, 1988.

Kelsey, Mark. "A Catalyst for Economic Growth." Communications International, Vol. 20,
No. 11, November 1993, pp. 42-44.

Leff, Nathaniel H. "Externalities, Information Cost, and Social Benefit-Cost Analysis for
Economic Development: An Example for Telecommunications." Economic Development and
Cultural Change, Vol. 32, January 1984, pp. 255-76.

MacBride Commission. Many Voices, One World. Paris: UNESCO, 1981.

Maitland Commission. The Missing Link. Geneva: International Telecommunication


Union, 1985.

McLellan, Iain. Television for Development: The African Experience, IDRC Manuscript
Report, International Development Research Centre, Ottawa, Ontario, 1986.

Morant, Adrian. "Closing the Gap." Telecom World, December 1991, pp. 56-57.

Moyo, M. "Development Through Radio." Communication Development Journal, Vol. 26,


Issue 3, 1991, pp. 227-232.

56
National Research Council, Board on Science and Technology for International
Development. Science and Technology Information Services and Systems in Africa.
Washington, D.C., National Academy Press, 1990.

National Telecommunications and Information Administration. "Telecommunications


and Information Infrastructure Assistance Program: Guidelines for Preparing
Applications." Washington, DC, February 1994.

Oeffinger, John C. "Merging Computers and Communications: A Case Study in Latin


America." Telematics and Informatics, Vol. 4, No. 3, 1987, pp. 195-210.

Parker, Edwin B. "Economic and Social Benefits of the Rural Electrification


Administration (REA) Telephone Loan Program." Geneva: International
Telecommunication Union, June 1983.

Parker, Edwin B. and Heather E. Hudson. Electronic Byways: State Policies for Rural
Development through Telecommunications. Boulder, CO: Westview, 1992.

Parker, Edwin B., Heather E. Hudson, Don A. Dillman, and Andrew D. Roscoe. Rural
America in the Information Age: Telecommunications Policy for Rural Development. Lanham,
MD: University Press of America, 1989.

Pierce, William B. and Nicolas Jequier. Telecommunications for Development. Geneva:


International Telecommunication Union. 1983.

Pool, Ithiel de Sola, ed. The Social Impact of the Telephone. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 1977.

Pool, Ithiel de Sola and Peter M. Steven. "Appropriate Telecommunications for Rural
Development." In Indu B. Singh, ed., Telecommunications in the Year 2000: National and
International Perspectives. Norwood, NJ: Ablex, 1983.

"Poor Connection", The Economist, Vol. 294, January 26, 1985, p. 26.

Preece, Robert S. "The Role of Telecommunications in Economic Growth and Income


Distribution." Proceedings of the World Telecommunications Forum. Geneva: ITU, 1987.

Samarajiva, Rohan and Shields, Peter. "Integration, Telecommunication and


Development: Power in the Paradigms", Journal of Communication, Vol. 40, Summer 1990,
pp. 84-105.

Saunders, Robert, Jeremy Warford, and Bjorn Wellenius. Telecommunications and Economic
Development, 2nd edition. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1994.

57
Sawhney, Harmeet. "The Public Telephone Network: Stages in Infrastructure
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Schmandt, Jurgen, Frederick Williams and Robert H. Wilson. Telecommunications Policy


and Economic Development: The New State Role. University of Texas at Austin, 1988.

Stephens, Guy M. "Funding Telecoms in the Developing World." Satellite Communications,


October 1990, pp. 14-16.

Stephens, Guy M. "The Third World Leaping Telecommunications Hurdles." Satellite


Communications, May 1990, pp. 14-16.

Stover, William J. Information Technology in the Third World: Can I.T. Lead to Humane
International Development? Boulder, CO: Westview, 1984.

Warwick. Martyn. "Out of Africa." Communications International, Vol. 21, No. 1, January
1994, pp. 58-62.

Wellenius, Bjorn. "On the Role of Telecommunications in Development."


Telecommunications Policy, March 1984, pp. 59-66.

Wellenius, Bjorn. "Telecommunications in Developing Countries." Finance & Development,


Vol. 21, September 1984, pp. 33-6.

2. Telecommunications and Rural/Regional Development

Anonymous. "Interview: FCC Common Carrier Bureau Chief Cheryll Tritt." Rural
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Allen, John C., Johnson, Bruce B., Leistritz, F. Larry. "Rural Economic Development using
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Analysys, Ltd. A Study of the Economic Implications of Stimulating Applications of IT&T in


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58
Block, C., D. Goldschmidt, A. Hafid, G. Lalor and A. Velasquez. "Satellite
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Projects in Indonesia, Peru and the Caribbean." Proceedings of the Pacific Telecommunications
Conference, Honolulu, January 1984.

Bradshaw, Ted K. "Rural Development and Telecommunications Potential and Policy."


Working Paper No. 524. Berkeley: Institute of Urban and Regional Development,
University of California, October 1990.

CAB International. Rural Development Abstracts. Vol. 15, No.2, June 1992.

Coulter, Kristin. "The Telco in Rural Development." OPASTCO Roundtable, spring 1990.

Davidson, William H., Anne C. Dibble, and Sandra H. Dom. Telecommunications and Rural
Economic Development. Redondo Beach, CA: MESA Inc., October 1990.

Dillman, Don A. "The Social Impacts of Information Technologies in Rural North


America." Rural Sociology, Vol. 50, No. 1, 1985, pp. 1-26.

Dillman, Don A. and Donald M. Beck. "Information Technologies and Rural Development
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Egan, Bruce L. "Bringing Advanced Technology to Rural America: The Cost of


Technology Adoption." Telecommunications Policy, Vol. 16, No. 1, January-February 1992,
pp. 27-45.

Estabrooks, Maurice F. and Rodolphe H. Lamarche, eds. Telecommunications: A Strategic


Perspective on Regional, Economic and Business Development. Moncton, Canada: Canadian
Institute for Research on Regional Development, 1986.

Gallottini, Giovanna T. "Infrastructure: The Rural Difference." Telecommunications


Engineering and Management. Vol. 95, No. 1, January 1, 1991, pp. 48-50.

Giaoutzi, M. and P. Nijkamp, eds. Informatics and Regional Development. Aldershot, UK:
Avebury, 1988.

Hansen, Suella, et al. "Telecommunications in Rural Europe: Economic Implications."


Telecommunications Policy, June 1990, pp. 207-222.

Hepworth, Mark. Geography of the Information Economy. New York: Guilford Press, 1990.

Hudson, Heather E. "Demand and Need: Problems in Planning Rural

59
Telecommunications."Telematics and Informatics, Vol. 2, No. 3, Fall 1985, pp. 251-258.

Hudson, Heather E. "Ending the Tyranny of Distance: The Impact of New


Communications Technologies in Rural North America." In Competing Visions, Complex
Realities: Social Aspects of the Information Society, ed Jorge Schement and Leah Lievrouw.
Norwood, NJ: Ablex, 1988.

Hudson, Heather E. "Satellite Communications and Development: From Conjecture to


Reality." Space Communications, Vol. 3, No. 4, 1985, pp. 289-295.

Hudson, Heather E. Telecommunications Policies for Rural Development. Melbourne,


Australia: Centre for International Research on Communication and Information
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Hudson, Heather E. "Universal Service: The Rural Challenge." Paper presented at the
Benton Foundation Conference on Universal Service, Washington, DC, October 1993.

Hudson, Heather E. When Telephones Reach the Village: The Role of Telecommunications in
Rural Development. Norwood, NJ: Ablex, 1984.

Hudson, Heather E. and Martin Burch. "Information and the Farm." Center for Research
on Communication Technology and Society, University of Texas at Austin, January 1988.

Kamal, Dr. S.S. "Advanced Telecommunication for Rural Applications." Satellite


Communications, October 1990, pp. 21-23.

Kaul, S.N. "Benefits of Rural Telecommunications in Developing Countries." Paris, OECD,


1978.

Kerr, W. T. and Blevis, B.C. "Telecommunication Services for Rural and Remote Areas."
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Lehner, J. Christopher. "Toward Rural Revival: The Telco-Community Partnership." Rural


Telecommunications, summer 1990.

Lloyd, Ann. "The Rural (Radio) Connection." Rural Telecommunications, fall 1988.

McAnany, Emile G., ed. Communications in the Rural Third World. New York: Praeger,
1981.

Mansell, Robin. "The Role of Information and Telecommunication Technologies in


Regional Development." Science, Technology, Industry Review, OECD, No. 3, April 1988, pp.

60
135-173.

Martin, William J. and Sean F. McKeown. "The Potential of Information and


Telecommunications Technologies for Rural Development." Information Society, Vol. 9, No.
2, April-June 1993, pp. 145-156.

Pye, Roger and Gillian Lauder. "Regional Aid for Telecommunications in Europe: A Force
for Economic Development." Telecommunications Policy, June 1987, pp. 99-113.

Stuart, Sara. "Video in the Village." Development Communication Report, Spring 1986, pp. 7-
8.

Taylor, John and Howard Williams. "The Scottish Highlands and Islands Initiative: An
Alternative Model for Economic Development." Telecommunications Policy, Vol. 14, No. 3,
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Tietjen, Karen. AID Rural Satellite Program: An Overview. Washington, DC: Academy for
Educational Development, 1989.

U.S. Congress, House of Representatives. Bringing the Information Age to Rural America.
Hearings before the Government Information, Justice, and Agriculture Subcommittee of
the Committee on Government Operations. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing
Office, 1991.

U.S. Congress, Office of Technology Assessment. Rural America at the Crossroads:


Networking for the Future, OTA-TCT-471. U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington
DC, April 1991.

von der Weid, Denis. "Rural Telecommunications in Developing Countries." Labour


Education, No. 28, 1992, pp. 28-32.

Warwick, Martyn. "Rural Communications: Wishful Thinking vs. Reality."


Communications International, Vol. 20, No. 7, July 1993, pp. 44-45.

3. Case Studies

Booz, Allen and Hamilton. "A Microeconomic Study of the Benefits of Improved
Telephone Service in Selected Areas of the Philippines, 1984." London, 1984.

Booz, Allen and Hamilton. "Study of the Economic Benefits of New Telecommunications
Services in Costa Rica, 1986." London, 1986.

61
Chu, Godwin C., Alfian C. Srivisal, and Boonlert Supadhiloke. "Rural
Telecommunications in Indonesia and Thailand." Telecommunications Policy, June 1985, pp.
159-169.

Gwyn, R.J. "Rural Radio in Bolivia: A Case Study." Journal of Communication, Vol. 33, No.
2, Spring 1983, pp. 79-87.

International Telecommunication Union. "Contribution of Telecommunications to the


Earnings/Savings of Foreign Exchange in Developing Countries: Case Studies of 20
Kenyan Firms." Geneva: ITU, 1988.

International Telecommunication Union. "Socio-Economic Benefits of Improved


Telecommunications in Developing Countries: Results of a Research Study in Vanuatu."
Geneva: ITU, 1988.

Kojina, Mitsuhiro, Junichiro Hoken, and Masaru Saito. "Report: The Use of Telephones in
Sri Lanka." Telecommunications Policy, December 1984, pp. 335-338.

Lalor, Eamon. "Action for Telecommunications Development: STAR: A European


Community Program." Telecommunications Policy, Vol. 11, No. 2, June 1987.

Malgavkar, P.D. and V.K. Chebbi. "The Impact of Telecommunications Facilities on Rural
Development in India." In Wedemeyer, Dan J. and M.R. Ogden, eds. Telecommunications
and Pacific Development: Alternatives for the Next Decade. New York: Elsevier and North
Holland, 1988.

Mayo, John K., Gary R. Heald, Steven J. Klees. "Commercial Satellite Telecommunications
and National Development: Lessons from Peru." Telecommunications Policy, Vol. 16, No. 1,
January-February 1992, pp. 67-79.

Mayo, John K., G.R. Heald, S.J. Klees, M. Cruz de Yanes. Peru Rural Communication
Services Project Final Evaluation Report. Washington, DC: Academy for International
Development, 1987.

Qvortrup, Lars. "The Nordic Telecottages." Telecommunications Policy, Vol. 13, No. 2, 1989,
pp. 59-68.

Shields, Peter, Brenda Dervin, Christopher Richter, and Richard Soller. "Who Needs
POTS-Plus Services? Comparison of Residential User Needs along the Rural-Urban
Continuum." Telecommunications Policy, Vol. 17, No. 8, November 1993, pp. 563-587.

4. Development Sectors:

62
4.1. Agriculture, Forestry, Fisheries

Atkins, George S. "Farm Radio in Developing Countries; A Case Study of the Developing
Countries Farm Radio Network." Development, Vol. 2, 1990, pp. 108-112.

Purvis, B. M. Information for Women in Agricultural Extension in ACP Countries.


Wageningen, Netherlands: Technical Center for Agricultural and Rural Cooperation,
1987.

Safilios-Rothschild, C. "Role of Women in Modernizing Agricultural Systems." AID


Research and Development Abstracts, Vol. 11, Issue 3/4, 1984, p. 5.

4.2. Education and Training

Baldwin, Lionel V. "The National Technological University." Educational Media


International, Vol. 30, No. 1, March 1993, pp. 40-41.

Buttedahl, Paz G. "Communications Technology and Adult Education: Can Participation


be Encouraged?" Lifelong Learning: The Adult Years, Vol. 6, No. 10, June 1983, pp. 4-6.

Catlin, Jamie. "New Telecommunication Developments: The Tanami Network."


Melbourne: CIRCIT Newsletter, Vol. 4, No. 4, June 1992.

Cooperman, William, Lori Mukaida, and Donald M. Topping. "The Return of


PEACESAT." Honolulu: Proceedings of the Pacific Telecommunications Conference, January
1991.

Cronin, Francis J., Gold, Mark A., Mace, Beth B., and Sigalos, John I. "Telecommunications
and Cost Savings in Educational Services." Information, Economics and Policy, Vol. 6, No. 1,
March 1994, pp. 53-75.

Cruise, R.J. "Success Factors Relating to Alternative Delivery of Education and Training
Programs." Education in Rural Australia, Vol. 3, No. 1, 1993, pp. 19-23.

Developing Distance Education. Papers submitted to the 14th World Conference of the
International Council for Distance Education Oslo, Norway, August 9-16, 1988.

Education and Development: Evidence for New Priorities. World Bank Discussion Papers, No.
95, 1990.

European Association of Distance Teaching Universities. "Open Distance Learning in the

63
European Community." Heerlen, Netherlands, 1992.

Filep, R.T and Pelton, J. N. "Education and Communication Satellites: Opportunities for
Outreach." 34th Congress of the International Aeronautics Federation, Budapest,
Hungary, October 1983.

Finchman, A. G., Desai, P., Halliwell, J., et. al. The Use of Radio for the In-service Continuing
Education of Rural Primary Health Care Personnel in Jamaica. Kingston, Jamaica: United
Cooperative Printer Ltd., 1984.

Gallagher, Lynne and Dale Hatfield. Distance Learning: Opportunities in Telecommunications


Policy and Technology. Washington, DC: Annenberg Washington Program of
Northwestern University, May 1989.

Hudson, Heather E. Applications of New Technologies in Distance Education:


Telecommunications Policy Issues and Options. Melbourne, Australia: Centre for
International Research on Communication and Information Technologies (CIRCIT), July
1992.

INTELECON. "Opportunities for Distance Education in Commonwealth African


Countries." Vancouver: Commonwealth of Learning, 1991.

Jamison, Dean T. Basic Education and Extension Costs, Effects, and Alternatives. World
Bank, Washington DC, 1982.

Jordahl, Gregory. "Communications Satellites: A Rural Response to the Tyranny of


Distance." Educational Technology, Vol. 29, No. 2, February 1989, pp. 34-38.

Kinyanjui, Peter and Augusta Morton. "The Role of Teleconferencing in Support of


Distance Education: The Case for Developing Countries." Paper presented at the Annual
Meeting of the International Conference on Distance Education, Bangkok, November
1992.

Lange, James C. "Educational and Cultural Satellite Exchange in Micronesia." Pacific


Communications Journal, Vol. 12, No. 2, 1983, pp. 130-146.

Lauffer, Sandra and Anna Casey-Stahmer. Telecommunications Systems for Education and
Training. Washington, DC: Academy for Educational Development, 1983.

Lewis, Chad T. and Terri Hedegaard. "Online Education: Issues and Some Answers."
T.H.E. Journal, Vol. 30, No. 9, April 1993, pp. 68-71.

64
Lockheed, Marlaine E., John Middleton, and Greta Nettleton, eds. "Education and
Technology: Sustainable and Effective Use." PHREE Background Paper 91/32.
Washington, DC: World Bank, 1991.

McAnany, Emile G. et. al. Distance Education for Developing Countries. London: Pergamon,
1983.

McIsaac, Marina S. "The Global Classroom: An International Perspective." Proceedings of


the Association for Educational Communications and Technology, January 1993.

Moore, Michael G. "Telecommunications, Internationalism, and Distance Education."


American Journal of Distance Education, Vol. 2, No.1, 1988, pp. 1-7.

Open Learning Agency. "Quick Facts: 1992-1993." Vancouver, BC, 1993.

Peraton, Hilary, ed. "Distance Education: An Economic and Educational Assessment of Its
Potential for Africa." Education and Training Series Report No. EDT 43. Washington, DC:
World Bank, December 1986.

Portway, Patrick. "How Corporate America Trains by Telecommunications."


Communications News, February 1993, pp. 23-24.

Sharma, Motilal. "Educational Broadcasting and Distance Education as a Strategy for


Revitalizing Education of the Disadvantaged." Paper presented at the Symposium on
Educational Broadcasting for More Effective Distance Education of the Disadvantaged in
the 1990s: Strategies and Approaches, Manila, Philippines, March 28-30, 1990.

Schramm, Wilbur. Big Media, Little Media. Beverly Hills, CA: Sage, 1977.

Sukow, Randy. "Government or Business: The Developing Battle over Who Takes the
Lead in Distance Learning." Broadcasting, November 30, 1992, pp. 42-47.

Tkal, Lucy, ed. Technology Survey Report: Educational Technologies 1994. Redfern, Australia:
Open Training and Education Network, 1994.

U.S. Congress. Hearing on Communication Benefits to Education and Finance before the
Subcommittee on Communications of the Committee on Commerce, Science and
Transportation. Washington, DC: United States Senate, March 31, 1993.

U.S. Congress. Hearing on Telecommunications and Education before the Subcommittee


on Communications of the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation.
Washington, DC: United States Senate, July 29, 1992.

65
U.S. Congress, Office of Technology Assessment. Linking for Learning: A New Course for
Education, OTA-SET-430. Washington, DC: Government Printing Office, November 1989.

Wilson, Carol. "Distance Learning is more than an Extracurricular Activity." Telephony,


July 13, 1992, pp. 12-17.

4.3. Health Care and Disaster Communications

Anonymous. "Hurdles to Widespread Use." Hospitals and Health Networks, Vol. 67, No. 20,
October 20, 1993, p. 47.

Arthur D. Little, Inc. Telecommunications: Can It Help Solve America's Health Problems?
Cambridge, MA: Arthur D. Little, Inc., July 1992.

Bashshur, Rashid. "Technology Serves the People: The Story of a Cooperative


Telemedicine Project by NASA, the Indian Health Service and the Papago People."
Proceedings of Telecommunication Policy Research Conference. Norwood, NJ: 1983.

Black, Dr. Robert E. "Communications for Improved Health Services." Development


Communication Report, No. 51, Autumn 1985.

Brauer, G. W. "Telehealth: The Delayed Revolution in Health Care." Medical Progress and
Technology, Vol. 18, No. 3, 1992, pp. 151-163.

Clements, Charles. "HealthNet." Cambridge, MA: SatelLife, May 1991.

Clift, Elayne. "Women, Communication, and Primary Health Care." Development


Communications Report, Summer 1986.

Dymond, Susan B. and Christopher J. Rankin. "Using Technology to Help Rural Practice."
MGM Journal, September/October 1992, pp. 32-36.

Fryer, Michelle, Stanley Burns and Heather Hudson. "Two-Way Radio for Rural Health
Care Delivery." Development Communication Report, Autumn 1985, pp. 5, 16.

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