Technology Forum

Archive content: This project has been completed, and the information is retained here for archive purposes. Current project work in Southern Africa can be found here.

Technology is widely acknowledged among other factors as a leading instrument for poverty reduction. Gaining full access to technology which is appropriate to local capabilities and needs is essential if people are to be able to make more effective use of the resources available to them and play an essential part in the eradication of poverty.

In increasing poor people's access to technology they need the ability to deal with them, to modify and adapt them in a more general and sustained way. The poor must be enabled and empowered to access improved technologies, and to make their own technical choices from a range of available technological alternatives. Through the Leading Authority on Technology Development project, Practical Action Southern Africa seeks to strengthen mechanisms for the establisment of policies for the development and adoption of technologies for poverty alleviation in Zimbabwe.

To this end this project seeks to ignite the discussions among technology stakeholders and processes towards collaborative understanding of a whole host of pro-poor technology issues in the region.

The project is encouraged by outcomes from technology stakeholder dialogues that begun in 2007 whose objective is to dialogue and debate technology for poverty alleviation issues and the achievement of MDGs. The process should lead towards influencing regional technology policies to be pro poor and the rationale for technology policy frameworks that are pro poor derives from the understanding that technology is an important component of poverty alleviation strategies.

Access to pro-poor technologies is unlikely to increase or positively impact on poor communities unless all technology stakeholders develop a collaborative understanding of pro poor technology issues and an enabling and supportive institutional policy environment is established. Science and technology alone cannot be perceived as the sole instrument for poverty reduction but one of the important tools and hence the quest to link it with poverty reduction strategies as well as aligning it with other global initiatives such as the millennium development goals.

To make technology regulations work for the poor, a new perspective is required in which scientific justifications are more attuned to the conditions facing poor communities. Scientific research and technological innovation should be in the public interest, rather than the particular interests of rich and powerful elites. It should be a partnership of relevant stakeholders and communities.

Project Goal
Strengthening the role of technology to alleviate poverty and achieve sustainable development.

To identify practical opportunities for bringing together stakeholder knowledge on technology generation, adoption, and sustained use that is designed to benefit the poor.

Technology Forum Online Resources
This page provides links to downloadable documents that cover issues of poor people's access to technologies in Zimbabwe. The resources bring together, key stakeholder knowledge on technology generation, adoption, and sustained use that is designed to benefit the poor.

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