Case Study

Mobile goes rural

At CeBIT 2010 earlier this year, South Africa took centre stage when the Mpumalanga-based Collaboration at Rural project demonstrated bridging the rural community divide, enabling communities to realise the benefits of digital communication. Now the Rustica project has taken up the challenge.

01 November 2010

Somewhat resembling a Barbara Taylor-Bradford novel, spaza shop owner Christina Marule took centre stage with German chancellor Angela Merkel, Spanish prime minister José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, and co-CEO of SAP AG Bill McDermott at the CeBIT opening ceremony in Hanover, Germany, in March this year.

What made Marule special? She became proof that information and communication technology (ICT) is now about to change the way rural communities do business. The Collaboration at Rural project, of which Marule was an integral part, gave us a taste of a new wave in ICT that, like social media, could become a tsunami rolling out across South Africa, as well as those other African countries with blossoming communication infrastructures.

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