Inderscience Publishers

Technology producers meeting indigenous users: the case of Sami network connectivity

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In this paper we use the case of an internet connectivity project in Scandinavia, Sami Network Connectivity (SNC), as a means to investigate the impulses which designing a network for a semi nomadic population, gives to network design, and to policy making. Thus, we regard the diffusion of innovations as something, which affects not only the culture of technology users but also that of technology producers. Manuel Castells argues that the cultural heritage imprinted in the Information and Communication Technology (ICT) sector's technical design and social organisation has developed as a result of interaction between large, hierarchical institutions on the one hand and the radical thinking of the 1960s on the other and. The conceptual congruence between internet experts and the user community displayed in SNC may so be explained. We suggest that due to discourses that surrounded senior ICT professionals during their youth, there is a preparation for a nomadic scenario within the ICT sector as such.

Keywords: internet connectivity, delay tolerant networking, information society, policy making, Sami, indigenous culture, indigenous peoples, nomadic populations, network design, innovation diffusion, user community, ICT

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