Digital Inequality and Development: Using Short Message Service for Agricultural Development in Indonesia

Djuara Lubis, Asri Sulistiawati


Technology tends to have positive and negative impacts on the community. In agricultural development, information and communication technology (ICT) is deemed able to provide agricultural knowledge and practices to increase farmers' welfare. However, at the same time, there is a notion that ICT can also cause inequality among farmers. This research aims to study whether or not short message service is beneficial for farmers and whether or not it creates inequality in an agricultural society. The research is by way of surveys conducted among 200 farmers in West Java, Indonesia. This research shows that SMS can increase farmers’ knowledge in farming. The most important result, as a novelty, is that the research proves that the digital divide and digital inequality take place in the use of SMS for agricultural development.


Keywords: digital inequality, information and communication technology, rural development, short message service.

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