Towards a Multimodal Portal Framework in Support of Informal Sector Businesses

28 May 2019

The potential of the informal business sector to contribute significantly to the economic development of developing nations has been widely acknowledged. By taking an instance of the informal business sector of South Africa, this paper presents the conceptual design of an ICT-based initiative that is dubbed Technology Support for the Informal Sector of South Africa (TESISSA). The central goal of TESISSA is to tackle some of the challenges of the informal sector of South Africa through ICT in a way that is beneficial to concerned stakeholders such as service providers in the informal sector, customers, and the government. To attain the aim of TESISSA, a multimodal portal framework that leverages the integration of intelligent cloud-based services and semantic technologies is proposed. The affordances, and architecture of a multimodal portal framework are presented as a plausible and potential solution to some of the core needs of informal business operators on one hand, and the challenges of the government as the main regulator of the informal sector that are so far unattended.