Power Instability in Rural Zambia, Case Macha

Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering book series (LNICST, volume 135)


This paper provides insights on the nature of electricity supply in the rural village Macha, Zambia. It reports on case study research. Use of Information and Communication Technologies and access to e-services are constrained by the availability of electricity. In Zambia‘s rural areas, 3.5 % of households have access to electricity supply. This paper shows such electricity supply can be erratic. When supply is available, it follows a diurnal pattern. The electricity supply varies considerably, including voltage dips and brown outs. It can cause equipment to enter into unstable states, to fail or to damage. Qualitative engineering aspects interact also with social factors, especially in rural Africa. Interventions must be sensitive to the complex array of challenges for people to be able to appropriate the benefits of ICT and e-services.


Rural electrification Power outages Community development 


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Copyright information

© Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Macha WorksChomaZambia
  2. 2.Council of Scientific and Industrial ResearchCape TownSouth Africa
  3. 3.Center for Information Technology and Society, and Department of Film and Media StudiesUniversity of CaliforniaSanta BarbaraUSA

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