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How could ICTs and digitization contribute to the new SDGs? (part 2)

As already explained in the previous post, the UN has established 17 goals to reach a better World for 2030. We consider that ICT could highly contribute to reach the SDGs goals. We already viewed the five first goals, after having a look on fighting poverty (goal 1), hunger (goal 2), improve health (goal 3) and education (goal 4), without forgetting the reduction of gender gap (goal 5), let´s have a quick overview of the next ones!

Goal 6: Water & Sanitation

How can ICT 6The effective management of water is a key issue as the world’s supply of clean, fresh water is steadily decreasing. ICTs are an important enabler to help improve the management of this valuable natural resource, through the use and management of data to take better public policies decisions. Mobile have also a relevant role to improve water and sanitation management worldwide, enabling access to basic services, as shown by the GSMA initiative denominated Mobile for Development Utilities. This program looks at improving access to basic energy, water and sanitation services in underserved communities using mobile technology and infrastructure.

Goal 7: Affordable and Clean Energy

How can ICT 7

 

This goal is very aligned with the previous one and it aims to ensure access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy for every human. The role of ICTS in this area will be relevant in achieving a more sustainable World. With the emergence of green ICTs, the ICTs are enabling competitive solutions to reduce CO2 emissions, promote environment sustainability or provide solutions to better use the energy and reduce energy consumptions, through the application of IoTs solutions, such as smart metering.

Goal 8: World & Economic Growth

How can ICT 8The promotion of sustained, inclusive and sustainable economic growth is also possible through the use of ICTs as the global economy is becoming more and more digital. Therefore, economic growth could be obtained thanks to ICTs and digital skills are essential to be part of the new digital economy as shown by different international reports on economic reports or on Skills & jobs for the new era. We are all aware of this new reality and supporting different programs & initiatives, such as the Grand Coalition for Digital Jobs in Europe or Think Big by Telefónica for young people or thespecific digital classrooms in Latin America to avoid a digital gap and provide the sufficient digital knowledge to grab the possibilities offered by technologies and contribute to the new digital economy, increasing local welfare an economic growth locally.

Goal 9: Infrastructure, Industrialization & Innovation

How can ICT 9The objective is to build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation. Therefore, it is clear that ICTs have a clear role as an enabler to reach this goal. Connectivity is a key issue and is one to the most relevant objectives for our sector in the agenda of most international fora such as the ITU,   WEF or the next IGF meeting in Brazil. We must bring to people access and ways to grab the benefits of the digital world as an asset for future social and economic growth. Digitization is transforming our society and our economy providing connectivity even in the most remote area, through mobile technology, or through IoT solutions and also with M2M solutions to foster sustainable industrialization. Innovation is inherent to our sector and it is constant in our businesses and services to find optimized and more efficient solutions for users, enterprises and administrations.

Goal 10: Reduce inequality

How can ICT 10Linked to the previous goal, innovation has the key to reduce inequalities among countries, if countries adopt smart public policies fostering innovation and R&D to allow people to benefit from the positive aspects offered by ICTs. Digitization of the society could reduce the inequality gaps and we are working hard on this way through initiative such as Open Future in Telefónica , a global and open program designed to connect entrepreneurs, startups, investors and public and private organizations from all over the world, integrating initiatives supporting open innovation and entrepreneurship such as Wayra, to support local initiatives and provide the knowledge they need to develop their business models locally. Actions towards people with special needs are also essential to reduce social inequalities. ICTs & new technologies could help also people to be better integrated in the society, through digital inclusion programs and offering specific digital skills programs. This goal is strongly linked to goal 5 already explained in the previous post and more focused on gender equality.

In the next post, we will finish to review the rest of the SDGs approved for 2030. What it is relevant is to indicate that we have a big opportunity to contribute to a more sustainable World, applying ICT solutions that are already available. However, we need to adopt a more multistakeholder approach, with more active cooperation between private and public sector. ICTs could create relevant synergies in the economic and social value chain and could really support the new SDGs.

Let´s work for it!

See you next week for the last part of the post trilogy!

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Natalia Moreno Rigollot/ @pitirrojo

Public Policy Manager of Telefónica