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Published in: The Journal of Community Informatics, vol.7, no 1-2, 2011.


This quantitative study surveyed 538 adults in isolated rural settings in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil, to examine whether telecenters operated by the non-profit organization Gems of the Earth improve digital literacy and promote social change. Using multivariate logistic regression, the study examined how individuals use information and communication technologies (ICTs) at the telecenter, and tested for predictors of their use. The findings confirm that these rural communities use ICTs for entertainment, to engage in civic participation, and to practice professional skills. The findings suggest that digital inclusion impacts these isolated communities by creating opportunities that may foster human development.