The in-depth study, The Impact of Public Access Venue Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) Available at Libraries on Sustainable Livelihood Strategies and Outcomes, will explore the impact of education, income generation, and employment opportunities on users of public access to ICT venues. This study, employing the Sustainable Livelihoods Approach, will take place in Botswana. The Sustainable Livelihoods Approach is particularly concerned with how (lack of) access to capital assets shapes vulnerability to shocks and trends, as well as the ability of individuals, households, and communities to cope with them. The livelihood strategies emanate from the interplay of vulnerabilities, capital assets, and the transforming structures and processes.
Led by Angelina Totolo and Jacobus Christiaan Renken of the University of Botswana, this study seeks to answer the research questions below, also exploring is there is a difference in the impacts along gender lines, on rural/urban dwellers, or in people who live in places endowed with natural capital like mining, tourism, or agriculture.
- Do public access ICTs and services located in libraries have an impact of reducing vulnerability of its users by enhancing education? If so, how do these public access ICTs and services impact the education of its users?
- Do public access ICTs and services located in libraries have an impact of reducing vulnerability of its users by increasing employability? If so, how do these public access ICTs and services impact their employability?
- Do public access ICTs and services located in libraries have an impact of reducing vulnerability by instigating income generating strategies? If so, what income generating strategies emanated from the use of these public ICTs and services?
This study uses a variety of research methodologies, both quantitative and qualitative, the indicators will be investigated through surveys, interviews, and focus groups at public access venues. Findings from this study may inform both government and private sectors about the benefits of using ICTs. The study may also provide evidence for all the sponsors of ICTs in Botswana in terms of whether there was a return on the ICT investment that was made in relation to development, poverty alleviation, and improved skills.