To achieve sustainability in this fast-paced world, connectivity and accessibility through ICT must come first.
Information and communication technology (ICT) plays a key role in removing development barriers. Yet, according to the United Nations, it is now more challenging to put ICT in everyone’s hands.
ICT Ensures Socio-Economic Development
Connectivity plays an essential role in bridging the digital divide, more so in least-developed countries (LDCs). Connectivity gives access to resources such as education, healthcare and economic opportunities. By improving connectivity, LDCs can bridge the economic gap in their communities. It also provides these communities with more socio-economic opportunities.
ICT Helps Sustainable Business Practises
For LDCs, connectivity may be the impetus for sustainable business practices. Connectivity help overcome regional boundaries. For Businesses, it expands customer reach and encourages e-commerce. All these are possible with the help of ICT and the tools it offers.
ICT can also encourage environmental business practices and business resilience. While businesses contribute to the socioeconomic growth and sustainability of the communities.
ICT Promotes Education, Information and Knowledge Sharing
Connectivity is key to advancing education and creating a knowledge society. It offers students online learning platforms, education resources and virtual classrooms. This in itself promotes fair learning opportunities and empowers future generations.
Improved Emergency Response and Community Resilience
Connectivity is critical in enhancing emergency response and ensuring an LDC’s resilience. Access to the ICT network ensures efficient coordination, mobilization, and transfer of critical information and services.
Bringing all levels of society online is no longer enough. Connectivity must now provide a safe, enjoyable, enlightening, productive, and affordable online experience.
At Swinburne, its ICT programs are designed to give students the skills and knowledge to succeed in the expanding sector. Its state-of-the-art facilities give students in-depth knowledge in their respective areas. This may be in the Internet of Things, cyber security, network technology or in data science, among others. Students tackle complex problems while discovering innovative solutions to real-world issues. These are possible by fostering a collaborative and inclusive learning environment.
Only with this knowledge and skills can we narrow the digital gap we’re facing. LDCs, like many other nations, have enormous untapped potential. Investing in its digital transformation creates long-term growth for future generations.
This article is in conjunction with the United Nations World Telecommunication and Information Society Day which falls on 17 May annually. With a focus on “empowering the least developed countries through information and communication technologies”, it calls on all sectors to pledge for universal connectivity and digital transformation.