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Digital Platforms in the Global South: Foundations and Research Agenda

Abstract : Digital platforms have become integral to many of the everyday activities that people across the globe encounter in areas like transportation, commerce and social interactions. Research on the topic has largely concentrated on the general functioning of these platforms in terms of platform governance, business strategies and consumer behaviour. Despite their significant presence in the global South, the developmental implications of digital platforms remain largely understudied. In part, this is because digital platforms are a challenging research object due to their lack of conceptual definition, their spread across different regions and industries, and their intertwined nature with institutions, actors and digital technologies. The aim of this paper is therefore twofold: to provide a conceptual definition of digital platforms, and to identify research strands in international development contexts. To do so, we draw from digital platforms literature, differentiate between transaction and innovation platforms and expose their main characteristics. We the present four strands in the form of research questions, illustrated with concrete examples, that can assist to pursue relevant studies on digital platforms and international development in the future.
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Submitted on : Thursday, September 12, 2019 - 4:04:45 PM
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Kari Koskinen, Carla Bonina, Ben Eaton. Digital Platforms in the Global South: Foundations and Research Agenda. 15th International Conference on Social Implications of Computers in Developing Countries (ICT4D), May 2019, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. pp.319-330, ⟨10.1007/978-3-030-18400-1_26⟩. ⟨hal-02285292⟩

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