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dc.contributor.authorChiang, Shu-Lin.en
dc.date.accessioned2018-03-29T12:15:37Z
dc.date.available2018-03-29T12:15:37Z
dc.date.issued2009en
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1842/29062
dc.description.abstracten
dc.description.abstractAn interpretive approach to digital divide Policy-making: A comparative study of China and Taiwanen
dc.description.abstractThis thesis investigates how problems for policy become defined as well as how policy responses are subsequently designed to address these problems. It was motivated by the substantive concern that existing literature on digital divide policy is derived from Western countries, and embedded within Western rationales. In contrast, the way in which digital divide policy is made in developing countries had received relatively little attention. In light of this gap in the literature, empirical research was carried out on the development of digital divide policy-making, highlighting policies from two developing countries as examples: Cun Cun Tong (providing every village with a telephone and internet connection) Policy in China and Digital Opportuniry Centre/APEC Digital Opportunity Centre in Taiwan.en
dc.description.abstractTheoretically, this research adopts an interdisciplinary rationale, combining an interpretative approach from the field of policy research and key concepts from Science and Technology Studies. It aims to overcome a shortcoming of much traditional research on the digital divide which, in its commitment to its substantive concerns has been un-reflexive in its approach. This thesis demonstrates how an interpretative approach can produce new insights into digital divide policy from a more critical perspective. It elucidates how understandings of the digital divide are articulated (initially in discussions in the USA and the European Union) and become promulgated through international organizations during the early 1990s to the year 2005, and how they are then ultimately 'domesticated', becoming embedded within particular national contexts and policy discourses.en
dc.description.abstractMethodologically, this research adopts a strategy of triangulation. It combines various modes and methods of enquiry: discourse analysis of policy documents is supplemented with interviewing policy-makers. Interviews are used to obtain first-hand materials which throw light on the orientation and context of the various actors who participate in policy-making and their concerns/discourses during policy-making. Finally, there is an analysis of policy outcomes. This research also contributes to opening the black box of policy-making, particularly in China, a context which presents particular challenges for the researcher.en
dc.description.abstractEmpirically, the findings provide an in-depth understanding of digital divide policy-making in developing countries. Firstly, it is demonstrated that international and national contexts matter in digital divide policy-making. Policy similarities can be explained by both the international context and local context. International policy discourses provide commonly available intellectual resources, whereas similarities in local contexts, for example a shared technocratic tradition. These international and national contexts also impact on the participants who are involved in digital divide policy-making, for example, the technocratic tradition of China and Taiwan is a factor underpinning the choice of policy participants with science and technology backgrounds. These participants then learn and exchange experiences from international organisations and other countries through international conferences, official policy websites, and personal contacts. Secondly, the study found that the relationship between discourses and policy-making is by no means as straightforward and linear as some interpretations of discursive shaping might imply. Discourses may have influences on policy development; however some inclusion strategies arose within domestic departments in advance of alignment with international digital divide discourses, as a result of pre-existing concerns within the national policy settings. A third, and related finding is that there is a gap between policy formation and policy implementation, the exploration of which reveals the complexity of policy discourses. For example, some policy texts were found to emphasise social development, whereas the implementation predominantly centres on the equipment of infrastructures. Finally, the most crucial contribution of this thesis is its development of an interdisciplinary interpretive approach to scrutinise digital divide policy. This provides a basis for future research in this area, as well as a means to address the limitations of existing approaches.en
dc.publisherThe University of Edinburghen
dc.relation.isreferencedbyAlready catalogueden
dc.subjectAnnexe Thesis Digitisation Project 2018 Block 17en
dc.titleAn interpretive approach to digital divide policy-making: a comparative study of China and Taiwanen
dc.typeThesis or Dissertationen
dc.type.qualificationlevelDoctoralen
dc.type.qualificationnamePhD Doctor of Philosophyen


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