There have been, generally speaking, for many years high expectations that information and communication technologies (ICTs) can make a contribution toward development. However this is not always achieved and, as has been found by several researchers, this unfavourable outcome is, amongst other things caused by partnership problems between partners.

The basic argument of this paper is that successful contributions in developing countries that are made with, and through, ICT are partly dependent on the health of the relationship between partners. It would therefore be necessary to study the factors that may influence the health of the relationship between partners in ICT related projects in developing countries. This could eventually serve as a foundation for some form of framework of partnership issues in such projects. This framework could then serve as the foundation for further research into developing a diagnostic instrument for this purpose.

The research was conducted in 10 projects involving multinational ICT companies, which were studied as separate case studies. Qualitative data was collected using the case study method and the data was analyzed for emerging patterns. It was found that problems with partner cooperation revolve around six core categories namely driving force factors, skill factors, input-output factors, socio-cultural factors, systems factors, and trust factors. These are explained in this paper. It is suggested that further research can serve to interrogate the proposed factors.