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Charu Gupta

Joined: Jul 12, 2012
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Digital Divide or a Knowledge Divide?
May 5, 2013

With increasing internet penetration, digital divide is becoming narrower and soon everyone will have access to all digital knowledge.

I was wondering if digital divide also means knowledge divide or they are two different terms or synonym of each other.

What do you think and why?

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Sana Maqbool

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Re: Digital Divide or a Knowledge Divide?
Aug 24, 2014

I think the digital divide and the knowledge divide are not synonymous as the decrease in the digital divide does not necessarily mean a decrease in the knowledge divide. Just because someone has access to information does not necessarily mean that they can understand, process and utilize the information. Depending on the individual’s socio-cultural background, people may or may not be able to make sense of the information available to them.

For example, I have access to the internet. However, if I was looking for information on a particular topic and could only find the information in languages other than English then the information is not useful to me as I can’t make sense of the information and therefore cannot use it any way. Similarly, I can easily find websites and textbooks with information about economics but that doesn’t mean I have the skills to disseminate the information and understand what I am reading.

Moreover, there are many people who possess skills and knowledge but do not have access and/or the ability to use ICTs. These people are hoarding information which I can’t access even though I have access to the internet.

I don’t think the knowledge gap is narrowing because the digital gap is narrowing. The knowledge divide cannot be reduced just by providing people with information. They need to be taught the skills to understand and make use of the information. Therefore the two concepts are completely different.


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learn2do

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Re: Digital Divide or a Knowledge Divide?
Apr 26, 2016

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