, Volume 82, Issue 4, pp 643–663 | Cite as

ICT-driven projects for land governance in Kenya: disruption and e-government frameworks



Critical academic research has yet to comprehensively identify conceptual linkages and tensions between information communication technologies (ICTs) and land governance projects. In order to make a contribution to these complex research fields, this article examines three Kenyan projects to illustrate different aspects of competing theoretical frameworks for ICT-based land rights projects. The projects documented land and property in the informal settlements of Kibera and Mathare in Nairobi, and in the rural community of Lari in Kiambu County. Drawing particularly on conceptual frameworks that emphasize the ‘disruptive’ potentials of ICTs, and frameworks based on e-government models, the article argues that these projects include both disruptive aspects, which work through applying pressure on the state, and more ‘integrative’ approaches which seek to build state capacity. The projects also rely on multiple stakeholders, and cannot be easily categorized within simple narratives of crowdsourcing, for example. Instead the realities are more complex and ‘success’ is difficult to assess, and potential uses of such projects are open and multiple.


Information communication technologies Land governance Informal settlements E-government Kenya Land rights Disruptive technologies 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of International Policy and GovernanceWilfrid Laurier UniversityWaterlooCanada
  2. 2.African Centre for Technology Studies (ACTS)NairobiKenya

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