From Technological Exclusion to the Use of Technology for Social Inclusion. Kimberley, South Africa.

March 11, 2018

In the 1880’s a velocipede was introduced in Kimberley which was later replaced by a steam tram and in 1904 by electric railway service. Modernisation in Kimberley was highly influenced by the discovery of diamonds. Despite all the technological advancement the city and the rest of South Africa were under Apartheid which had resulted in technological exclusion. Only the elite or minority group (whites) in the society enjoyed the benefits of the introduction of new technologies at the time. This started to change in 1994, when the democratic government came into power, encouraging equality for all citizens and embarked on promoting technological innovation. Due to this shift, when walking around Kimberley, e.g. a number of satellites can be found which were put up to enhance access to information.

Today the majority of the South African population owns mobile phones, computers, and has access to internet which are significant tools in promoting access to information and to opportunities. Kimberley City embedded with Small Medium Micro Enterprises and technology is often used as example to promote the concept of knowledge economy which refers to an economy in which growth is dependent on the quantity, quality and accessibility of the information available. As a planning fraternity much still needs to be done such as sharing the idea to the people on how to apply technology as a tool to create sustainable urban and rural areas, and to promote smart cities. Nevertheless, the Government’s intention to advance technology and inclusion is evident in the 2016 adopted Integrated Urban Development Framework (IUDF) which aims at ensuring integrated and coordinated interventions to deal with social exclusion, environmental threats, economic inefficiencies, logistical bottlenecks, urban insecurity, decaying infrastructure and the impacts of new technologies. 

 

#cityexplorations #citiesandtechnology #urbanplanning #progress #integratedurbandevelopment #technology #innovation #inclusion #kimberley #northerncape #southafrica 

 

 

 

 

 

 All picture rights reserved by Freddy Netshivhodza

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