Scott S. Robinson

Universidad Metropolitana, Iztapalapa campus, Mexico City

Topic: From Telecenters to Cybercafes

The Latin American connectivity ecosystem began with pilot community telecenters
in the late 90’s (financed by international donors); “pay to connect” cybercafes already
operated in urban centers and their expansion into small towns and villages accelerated
dramatically after 2000 (and continues today at a slower pace); government connectivity
projects appeared (in large part a product of the mega players observing the telecenter
and cybercafe rollout) but they share a distinct downside; oligopolies abound; all these
elements converge in the public policy challenges in today’s Latin American IT
environment.

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