An Upward Spiral Model: Bridging and Deepening Digital Divide
The digital divide is a global problem that impacts an individual’s ability to participate in society. To address disparate and conflicting theories on the dynamics of the digital divide, the researchers proposed an integrated upward spiral model that explains how digital divides are both alleviated and deepened. The researchers then utilized an existing 2014–2015 dataset comprised of 398 survey responses and nine interview responses from Chinese migrant workers to test the viability of this model. Two hypotheses suggested based on the upward spiral model were supported by path analysis and supplemental qualitative analysis of the data: 1. A path traced causal relationship exists among forces, resources, access, e-acceptance, and e-inclusion and 2. Situational e-inclusion initiates forces, which in turn facilitates resources and access, and prompts ongoing cycles of situational e-inclusion. The results support that a comprehensive upward spiral model can be utilized as an analytical framework to explain the reasons and extents to which the digital divide phenomenon exists in society.
KeywordsE-inclusion Upward spiral model Deepening digital divide
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