Building Knowledge Societies through ICT4D

Within the ICT4D field the concept of ‘knowledge society’ is often used. This blog post wants to delve deeper into what knowledge societies actually are, how ICT4D can help achieving them, and why it matters.

So what do we mean by ‘knowledge society’?

Today, knowledge and information have significant impact on people’s lives. In a ‘knowledge societysharing of knowledge and information is key. There is an emphasis within knowledge societies of the human rights agenda, the importance of knowledge sharing and an inclusive participatory character.  ICTs are key in knowledge societies as they increase the speed of and can facilitate this knowledge sharing. As such, it has the power to transform economies and societies.

Continue reading “Building Knowledge Societies through ICT4D”

ICTs for Inclusive Education

With the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, a commitment to inclusive and equitable quality education at all levels was made a priority. This post will focus on inclusive education and the role ICTs can play. 

‘Inclusive education is a process of strengthening the capacity of the education system to reach out to all learners (…). As an overall principle, it should guide all education policies and practices, starting from the fact that education is a basic human right and the foundation for a more just and equal society’ (UNESCO 2009)

Alternative Keyboard for children with motoric disabilities presented on a table

Image source:

Continue reading “ICTs for Inclusive Education”

ICTs – Providing Opportunities for the Invisible 1 Billion

We have briefly discussed how disability-inclusive ICT4D programmes can benefit people with disabilities. In this blog post, I briefly want to explore two ICT mediums, websites and mobile devices, in order to understand how they can facilitate access to social and economic activities for people with disabilities.

Websites – Facilitating access to socio-cultural, economic and educational activities

With the increased proliferation of web-based services, there is no doubt that the internet is an important part of people’s everyday lives. We use websites to browse and read news, connect with likeminded, do our banking, and look up all sorts of information. Websites can also provide visual, audio and text output on demand and offer multimedia input opportunities for users.

Through the internet, users can participate remotely in a variety of activities, ranging from education, employment, economic and government services, to consumer activities. There are also a vast number of opportunities for social participation through engaging in social networks, accessing video, audio and text communication, cloud-based sharing and other types of media interaction.  Websites, as such, are acting as critical facilitators for accessing social and economic activities. 

Continue reading “ICTs – Providing Opportunities for the Invisible 1 Billion”

Digital Empowerment – Reaching the Invisible 1 Billion

As we have noted, a sound global development agenda can’t ignore disabilities. The UNDP actively promotes ICT4D as a powerful tool for economic and social development around the world. The aim of ICT4D is to bridge the digital divide between the majority and minority world. The rationale behind is that ensuring equitable access to up-to-date communication technologies will aid economic development, but it is evident that some people’s economic development will be excluded if the programmes themselves are not inclusive. Continue reading “Digital Empowerment – Reaching the Invisible 1 Billion”