After its 6th meeting held in New York City at the end of September, the UN Broadband Commission for Digital Development has released a new report called “The State of Broadband 2012: Achieving Digital Inclusion for All”.
For those not familiar with this forum, the UN Broadband Commission was settled in May 2010 as a joint initiative by the ITU and the UNESCO, with the objective to promote broadband and the deployment of high speed networks, in order to take advantage of Internet. Internet is considered as a key element ensuring high economic and social benefits for all the societies and Broadband networks are essential tools for achieving the MDGs, the Millennium Development Goals targeting 2015 for the main outcomes.
Telefónica actively contributes to the UN Broadband Commission with 53 other Commissioners, from governments, relevant industries, academia from all over the World and international agencies working for development.
The mentioned report evaluates the roll-out of broadband around the world, providing country rankings across up to 177 economies on affordability, national broadband policy, and connecting people and dwellings. It also highlights the need to establish a specific policy leadership for ICT (nowadays more than 119 Governments have adopted Broadband Plans) nationally but in cooperation with all the stakeholders involved in the ICT value chain, ensuring a fair and dynamic market and also encouraging private investments.
At the same time, these policies should not only focus on the supply side but also on the demand, as a policy just dealing with one side of the market cannot be successful. Another relevant element is also to take into account every market conditions and adapt the proposals to market reality, as a “one size fits all” policy could put into danger the viability of a determined policy in this area, where private investment needs are essential.
The report outlines also a variety of ways in which broadband is improving the lives of people around the world, in m-health, distance education and m-learning, via m-payment systems, and in improving the lives of women, promoting innovation and fostering the acquisition of new skills.
As the saying says “A picture is worth a thousand words”, have a look at the ITU video with the main statshot issued for the occasion, summarizing main data included in the report and the objectives expected for 2015:
The UN Broadband Commission will continue to work to reach the objectives for 2015, so we will keep you informed about the main outcomes in the next months!