The socio-economic impacts of telecentres in rural Tanzania: a case study of Sengerema district, Mwanza Region

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University of Dar es Salaam
Sengerema district council has had a telecentre since 2001. However the socio-economic indicators do not show that the district is better than districts without telecentres. This study intended to assess how the telecentre has benefited the users in respect of social and economic aspects. The study was conducted in Sengerema district, Mwanza region. A modified Berlo (1960) model of communication guided the study in assessing the socio-economic impacts of the telecentre. The survey design was employed using structured and unstructured questionnaires, interviews, observation and documentary review methods of data collection. The sample size of 62 respondents included 42 males and 20 females. The research findings indicate that Sengerema telecentre provided computer training, internet connection, radio programmes, English language teaching, and other services. However frequent power cuts, language barrier, lack of training, time constraints, outdated information and cost have hindered the effective provision of its services to users. In general, the users believed that the centre has helped improve their community’s wellbeing and the study concludes that Sengerema MCT has impacted the community. However, with regard to its original objectives, the impacts do not correspond to the progress of the district. It is recommended that the telecentre should acquire reliable power supply and train people in how to use new information and communication services, and the information provided should be in local languages in order to facilitate equitable access to information for rational decision making.
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Telecommunication, Telecentres, Sengerema District, Mwanza region, Tanzania
Mbangala, The socio-economic impacts of telecentres in rural Tanzania: a case study of Sengerema district, Mwanza Region. Master dissertation, University of Dar es Salaam. Available at