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Power/knowledge and impact assessment: creating new spaces for expertise in international development

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

<mark>Journal publication date</mark>03/2012
<mark>Journal</mark>New Technology, Work and Employment
Issue number1
Number of pages13
Pages (from-to)9-22
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


This paper seeks to contribute to an emerging debate on impact assessment in the domain of information and communication technologies for development (ICT4D). Drawing on the literature and some aspects of Foucault’s (1977a) work on power /knowledge we reflect on the ways in which impact assessment may come to shape the nature and scope of ICT4D projects. We focus our attention to the processes of how development is practiced and its importance for ICT4D outcomes. Specifically we consider the role of methodologies and upstream agencies and argue that impact assessment offers the potential to substantially transform power knowledge relations between donors, NGOs, those working in specific context and the beneficiaries themselves. Overall we will suggest that impact assessment may come to offer a new and subtle form of control that may shape how we may come to understand and undertake development. Based on this analysis, we draw recommendations for the future use of impact assessment in the domain of ICT4D and implications for future research.