INFORMATION SERVICES FOR RURAL COMMUNITIES: THE “TELECOTTAGE” PROJECT
By Steve Harrison
The establishment of a network of ‘telecottages’ or community teleservice centres in Scandinavia commenced in 1985. These centres provide public access to computers and a broad range of software, databases, communications, distance education and other services, and are now making an important contribution to economic, social and cultural development, particularly in more isolated rural communities. Similar installations are being planned or contemplated in several European countries (France, Spain, Portugal, Wales and Scotland), in Canada, and in the developing countries of Bhutan, Benin and Sri Lanka. The telecottage concept has appeal for Australia and New Zealand, where rural isolation is relatively great. This paper discusses the rationale and history of the telecottage project, the services provided, achievements to date and future prospects. The relevance of the concept for Australasia is then examined. The material presented here is based on visits by the authors to a number of telecottages in Denmark, and has drawn on findings reported by Qvortrup.
page: 303 – 315
Prometheus: Critical Studies in Innovation
Volume 7, Issue 2