Rhodes>JMS>Staff>Lorenzo Dalvit

Lorenzo Dalvit

Associate Professor, Digital Media and Cultural Studies, Postgrad Co-ordinator
046 603 7157

Laurea (University of Trento, Italy), MA (Rhodes), PhD (Rhodes), PGDHE (Rhodes)


Room 105 Africa Media Matrix
Upper Prince Alfred Street

Postal address

School of Journalism and Media Studies
Rhodes University
PO Box 94
Grahamstown 6140 


JMS3: Radical Discourses Online
JMS Honours and Masters: Platform Power
JMS Masters: Critical Media Studies
Masters and PhD supervision

Community engagement

Siyakhula Living Lab: an ICT-for-development project in Dwesa, a rural area on the Wild Coast of the former Transkei. As part of a multi-disciplinary team, I contribute with a Social Sciences/ Educational perspective to strategic decisions within the project as well as activities such as Workshops on mobiles as creative tools.

Professional involvement

2019/20: Member of the organising committee of the International Developmental Informatics Association (IDIA) conference hosted by the United Nations University in Macao (China).

Research areas

Digital Inequalities
Mobile communication in marginalised rural areas
Social Media and democratic participation

Research projects

2015-2024: Two National Research Foundation-funded research projects into digital inequalities in marginalised communities.
2015-2017: Principal investigator of “Mediating the territory: mobile phones and hyperlocal services in marginalised communities” (funded by the NRF).
2015-2017: Institutional reference person for the “App factory” international collaboration with the Bruno Kessler Foundation (Italy). This initiative was sponsored by the Italian Foreign Ministry in collaboration with the South African NRF.
2015-2016: Led the South African component of the Advancing MOOCs for Development Initiative (AMDI). This was a multi-country collaboration (South Africa, Colombia and the Philippines) sponsored by IREX and co-ordinated by the Technology and Social Change Group at the University of Washington in Seattle (US).

Research publications

Dalvit, L. (2020). “Mobile phones and visual impairment in South Africa: experiences from a small town”. In Ellis, K., Goggin, G and Haller, B. (Eds.) Routledge companion to disability and media. Routledge.
Buthelezi, M. and Dalvit, L. (2019). "Exploring how mobile phones mediate bonding, bridging and linking social capital in a South African rural area". Chapter 10 in Mutsvairo, B. and Ragnedda, M. (Eds.) Mapping Digital Divides. Amsterdam University Press.
Chatikobo, T. and Dalvit, L. (2019). "Services, schools and skills: Mobile media and local development in a south African rural area". Proceedings of the 4th International Conference on Smart Learning Ecosystems and Regional Development. 24-26 May 2019. Rome (Italy).
Dalvit, L. (2019). "The unbearable coloniality of being disabled: old and new media examples from South Africa and beyond". Proceedings of the International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR) conference. 7-11 July 2019, Madrid (Spain).
Dalvit, L. (2018). "From access to proficiency: reconfiguring digital inclusion in a rural area in South Africa". Chapter 4 in Ragnedda, M. and Mutsvairo, B. (Eds.) Digital Inclusion: an international comparative analysis. Rowman and Littlefield. Pp 57-73. ISB:9781498562133.
Dalvit, L. (2018). “The language metaphor: an epistemological approach to the digital divide”. Chapter 6 in Ragnedda, M. and Muschert, G. (Eds.) Theorising digital divides. Routledge. Pp 75-87. ISBN (10): 1315455315.
Dalvit, L. and Schoon, A. (2018). “Siyashuta: capturing police brutality on mobile phones in South Africa”. In Berry, M. and Schleser, M. (Eds.) Mobile media making in an age of smartphones Vol. II. Palgrave. Pp 129-137.
Dalvit, L. and Scarcelli, C. (2018). “The 5 Stars Movement and the promise of eDemocracy in Italy”. Chapter 11 in Dee, J. (Ed.) From Tahrir Square to Ferguson: Social Networks as Facilitators of Social Movements. New York: Peter Lang Publishing. Pp 231-249. ISBN: 978-1-4331-2939-1.
Dalvit, L. (2018). Co-creation or creolisation? the politics of digital participation in a South African Living Lab. Paper presented at the STS Italia Conference: Technoscience from below. 14-16 June 2018, Padua (Italy).

Chatikobo, T. and Dalvit, L. (2020) Services, schools and skills: mobile media and local development in a South African Rural Area. Smart Innovation, Systems and Technologies. 158 (2020). p.219-231.

Dalvit, L. Mobile communication and urban/rural flows in a South African marginalised community. The Network Society Today. Online, Barcelona. Spain. November 2020.