A Meta-Analysis of Second-Order Digital Divide Effects

Posted: 3 Apr 2013

Date Written: March 31, 2013


This study explores the digital divide in terms of its relationship with ethnic minorities and the structural conditions they face. The central argument is that the digital divide constitutes a particularly serious problem for ethnic minorities in the United States, because they are already marginalized in terms of both education and income.

The first wave of digital divide research focused mostly on inequality in access to computer and Internet technology. The second wave of digital divide research has concentrated on social and cultural aspects of the divide. In both cases, scholars and policymakers alike recommend making technology more accessible to more people to address digital inequality.

This study conducts a meta-analysis of the second-wave digital divide studies, reviewing refereed academic journal articles that address social and cultural aspects of the digital divide published between 1990 and 2012. This meta-analysis focuses on various contributing cultural factors, i.e., gender, education, geographic residence, etc., that affect not just access, but the use of information and communication technologies. To date, no published meta-analysis has been conducted on this area. The results can help point to possible gaps in efforts that address digital inequality.

Keywords: meta-analysis, digital divide, digital inequality

JEL Classification: I28

Suggested Citation

Carveth, Rodney, A Meta-Analysis of Second-Order Digital Divide Effects (March 31, 2013). TPRC 41: The 41st Research Conference on Communication, Information and Internet Policy, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2242701

Rodney Carveth (Contact Author)

Morgan State University ( email )

1700 E. Cold Spring Ln
Baltimore, MD 21251
United States

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