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Researching the adoption of ICT in Ethiopia: a case study of small hotels in Addis Ababa

Demeke, Wegene; Olden, Anthony


Anthony Olden


Anthony Olden


Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to analyse the difficulties encountered when researching the
adoption of information and communications technology (ICT) by small hotels in Addis Ababa,
Ethiopia, and to indicate how some of these difficulties were overcome.
Design/methodology/approach – The background and theoretical framework of the research
project is described, and the research difficulties analysed in the context of the literature and of
experience elsewhere in Africa. Issues such as informed consent are considered from different cultural
Findings – The conclusion is that an understanding of the political, economic and cultural context is
essential to the carrying-out of a successful research project in Ethiopia, and that these same factors
are likely to have a major influence on the diffusion of ICT within the country.
Practical implications – An Ethiopian case study is of particular interest because unlike Tanzania,
Kenya and much of the rest of Africa, the country’s telecommunications industry remains in
government hands, a broadband connection is very expensive, and the percentage of Ethiopians using
the internet is very small – no more than 0.75 percent of the population in 2010 according to the figures
of the International Telecommunication Union.
Originality/value – Little has been written about small hotels and other small and micro businesses
in Addis Ababa, and little or nothing about the setbacks that can occur when researching them. This
paper fills some of the gaps in the literature.
Keywords Research process, Information and communication technology,
Small and micro-size business enterprises, Hotels, Ethiopia, Small to medium-sized enterprises,
Hospitality services

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Sep 14, 2012
Deposit Date Sep 28, 2017
Journal Aslib Proceedings
Print ISSN 0001-253X
Publisher Emerald
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 64
Issue 5
Pages 519-528
Keywords Research process, Information and communication technology, Small and micro‐size business enterprises, Hotels, Ethiopia, Small to medium‐sized enterprises, Hospitality services
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