Mridul Chowdhury, Harvard University with Therese Baptiste-Cornelis, Cornelis & Associates Ltd. Kazim H Syne, RBTT Services Limited
“ People in Trinidad and Tobago have a propensity to get certificates from short courses. As a result, with the rising hype of IT, many training institutes have grown overnight to provide IT education.” —Business analyst, Trinidad and Tobago
“ Although there has been a lot of talk about IT for the past few years, very little of the government rhetoric has been translated into action so far, and much of the private sector is still ignorant about the benefits of IT.” —Executive of Trinidadian IT company
Trinidad and Tobago’s economy has historically been dependent on oil, gas, and chemical exports, which has caused the nation to become increasingly vulnerable to the volatility of global energy prices. As part of an effort to reduce this precariousness and to diversify the economy, the government has placed heavy emphasis on ICT to integrate the nation into the Networked World (Ranking in ICT as Government Priority: 56). The government has two main goals: to help build an export-oriented software sector and to increase efficiency in business and government by adoption of ICTs.1 Trinidad and Tobago ranks forty-sixth overall in Readiness for the Networked World. The Ministry of Communication and Information Technology was created in 2001 to support and, in some cases, lead ICT initiatives in Trinidad and Tobago. However, a coordinated effort has yet to emerge to put in place and implement a national ICT strategy among the private sector, the government, and academia (Ranking in Effectiveness of Government ICT Programs: 45). Teledensity in Trinidad and Tobago has been increasing over the last decade at a slow but steady pace. Mobile telephone penetration increased dramatically between 1999 and 2000, but it remains significantly lower than fixed-line penetration. Significant challenges exist in the telecommunications sector:...