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The flow of, and access to, information in Bangladesh: A village level case study
November 18, 2012, 9:49 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

In: The International Information & Library Review, 6 november 2012.

Written by: Md. Jamal Uddin & M. Mezbah-ul-Islam

Abstract:

This paper identifies the sources and channels of information in the rural areas of Bangladesh and highlights the information flow and access patterns at the village level of Comilla and Chittagong districts in Bangladesh. It proposes some suggestions for effective information services in rural area, as well as a specific model for a Bangladesh Integrated Rural Information System (BD-IRIS) to improve the information system of villagers. This study uses structured interviews through a pilot survey of 20% of the households from each village and information gathered by personal observations and other secondary sources, as well as appropriate statistical methods. A total of 155 responses is included in the study.

Existing conditions of information flow and access in this case study indicate that there are problems in access in spite of interpersonal sources and channels of information. Of course, it is important to remember that the low literacy rate in the villages studied and in many similar communities presents many serious barriers. The author recommends establishing a Village Information Center (VIC) to provide integrated and concerted information services, along with an integrated rural information system for the purpose in the villages studies, and more widely, to meet the requirements of all people in villages in Bangladesh. The case study is one of very few studies focusing on the flow and access of information for rural areas of Bangladesh, particularly as regards information sources and channels, system and services. The approach can be replicated in other communities, and the proposed model for future direction to improve information system of village level people of Bangladesh could be modified for use in other countries.