Technology and poverty eradication: pre-conditions for effectiveness
PublisherPula: Botswana Journal of African Studies
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New technology has been identified as one way to alleviate poverty in developing nations. This is because it makes available cheaper drugs, cheaper inputs such as fertilizers and new seed varieties that are needed by the poor to improve their lives. New technology also connects producers with quick and easy access to overseas markets and sources of inputs through the internet, for example. However, in order for the poor to make use of these new methods to improve their lives, they need to be able to access the new technology. In order for anybody to use the internet, for example, they need to have access to it: it should be available and affordable, in the rural as well as urban areas. They also need to have the basic education that enables them to use and even appreciate such new technologies. This paper argues that the poor in Botswana do not have access to the new technology because of lack of education. They also do not have the "old technology", such as electricity and the telephone, that are pre-requisites for access to the new technology. Therefore, if new technology is to work to alleviate poverty in Botswana, emphasis should be put on making the old technology available and affordable. Education should also emphasize science and math curricula.