Using Named Examples, Assess the Effectiveness of Technological Leapfrogging in Contributing to the Development Process

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“Using named examples, assess the effectiveness of technological leapfrogging in contributing to the development process.” Technology leapfrogging is a term used to describe the bypassing of technological stages that other countries have gone through. Technology leapfrogging is bypassing some of the processes of growing of human capabilities and fixed investment in order to narrow down the gaps in productivity and output that separate industrialised and developing countries. Leapfrogging involves the technical aspects of implementing new technologies in the existing technological environments, involving the economic, including financial aspects, the power and broader social interests related to existing and new technology systems, and a wide range of other socio-economic factors. Mobile phones are frequently held up as a good example of technology's ability to decrease the development disparity between MEDC’s and LEDC’s. In the economically lower developing world - places with poor infrastructure, few forms of transport and dangerous land lines; mobile phones substitute for travel, allow price data to be distributed more quickly and easily, enabling traders to reach wider markets and generally make it easier to do business. The mobile phone is a prime example of a “leapfrog” technology: it has enabled developing countries to skip the fixed-line technology of the 20th century and move straight to the mobile technology of the 21st. In Afghanistan, the country's landline network has been torn to bits by 20 years of war. What is left is now out of date and extremely unsafe. To put new wires in the ground would take decades and be prohibitively expensive. Instead, installing a modern mobile phone network is cheaper, quicker and easier. From having limited phones, the wealthy Afghan people are using one of the latest western communications devices. When the mobiles first went on sale in Afghanistan earlier in the year, nearly 400 people have spent $350 for a handset...
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