ICTs

International Day for Universal Access to Information

On 17 November 2015, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) declared 28 September as International Day for Universal Access to Information. Considering that several civil society organizations and government bodies in the world have adopted and currently celebrate this observance, the UN General Assembly also adopted 28 September 2019 as the International Day for Universal Access to Information.

UNESCO and its intergovernmental programs – the International Programme for Development of Communication and the Information for All Programme – provide a platform and frame for all the stakeholders to participate in international discussions on policy and guidelines in the area of access to information. Both programs also enable positive environment for ATI to flourish through the development of projects aimed to strengthen open science, multilingualism, ICTs for disabled and marginalized, and media and information literacy.

Access to information

Informed citizens can make informed decisions, for instance, when going to the polls. Only when citizens know how they are governed, can they hold their governments accountable for their decisions and actions. Information is power. Therefore, universal access to information is a cornerstone of healthy and inclusive knowledge societies.

Universal access to information means that everyone has the right to seek, receive and impart information. This right is an integral part of the right to freedom of expression. The media plays a crucial role in informing the public about issues of interest, but it relies on the ability to seek and receive information, too. Hence, the right to universal access to information is also bound up with the right to freedom of the press.

To learn more about why and how the UN commemorates this day, please visit un.org/en/observances/information-access-day.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bobbinassar@gmail.com or bknotts@uua.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com.

Launch of Repository of Women in Tech

WSIS Forum 2022 ICTs and Gender Mainstreaming — Launch of Repository of Women in Tech

At the request of and in collaboration with WSIS Stakeholders a repository of Women in Tech will be launched. The goal is to identify and connect women leaders and practitioners in all sectors of the ICT industry from all regions and engage them in events, forums (e.g. WSIS Forum) and activities such as various workshops, training courses, networking events, aimed at fostering a dialogue on the use of ICTs as a means for implementing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Register here!

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-NY, please visit ngocsw.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Geneva, please visit ngocsw-geneva.ch. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Status of Women-Vienna, please visit ngocswvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN

World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development

Cultural events cancelled, cultural institutions closed, community cultural practices suspended, empty UNESCO World Heritage sites, heightened risk of looting of cultural sites and poaching at natural sites, artists unable to make ends meet and the cultural tourism sector greatly affected… The impact of COVID-19 on the cultural sector is being felt around the world. This impact is social, economic and political – it affects the fundamental right of access to culture, the social rights of artists and creative professionals, and the protection of a diversity of cultural expressions.

The unfolding crisis risks deepening inequalities and rendering communities vulnerable. In addition, the creative and cultural industries (CCI) contribute US$2,250bn to the global economy (3% of GDP) and account for 29.5 million jobs worldwide. The economic fall-out of not addressing the cultural sector – and all auxiliary services, particularly in the tourism sector – could also be disastrous. (source “Culture & COVID-19: Impact and Response Tracker – Issue 2

Why does cultural diversity matter?

Three-quarters of the world’s major conflicts have a cultural dimension. Bridging the gap between cultures is urgent and necessary for peace, stability and development.

Cultural diversity is a driving force of development, not only with respect to economic growth, but also as a means of leading a more fulfilling intellectual, emotional, moral and spiritual life. This is captured in the culture conventions, which provide a solid basis for the promotion of cultural diversity. Cultural diversity is thus an asset that is indispensable for poverty reduction and the achievement of sustainable development.

At the same time, acceptance and recognition of cultural diversity – in particular through innovative use of media and Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) – are conducive to dialogue among civilizations and cultures, respect and mutual understanding.

To read more about the origin of this observance and peruse relevant materials, visit un.org/en/observances/cultural-diversity-day.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Financing for Development, please visit ngosonffd.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org

 

[WSIS Forum] Digital Inclusion of Older Persons

Digital Inclusion of Older Persons: Harnessing digital technologies to promote the inclusion and well-being of older persons

Tuesday 11 August 2020
14:00-15:00 CEST / 8:00-9:00 EST

Register here: https://bit.ly/3hKJKPV

Background and Objectives

Highlighting the importance of older persons, the World Summit on the Information Society Forum in 2020, for the first time, has dedicated a special track to older persons and ICTs. Technological advances are becoming entrenched in many aspects of our societies and hold the potential to create opportunities towards an inclusive and sustainable development and provide tools to surmount the challenges faced by many to fully participate in the development process. However, where access to ICTs is limited and not inclusive, it can intensify existing inequalities and even create new ones. Both the opportunities and challenges intrinsic to technological progress have been illustrated by the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Available evidence shows that older persons are often among those that do not benefit fully from the potential of ICTs. This session will explore access and inclusion of older persons in technology, discuss the digital divide in this group identifying their main vulnerabilities, reasons and the impact that such divide has on older persons’ participation in society, and provide some examples of successful efforts to promote access and inclusion of older persons.

The event also serves as a springboard to the fifty-ninth session of the Commission for Social Development to be held in February 2021, where the priority theme is “Socially just transition towards sustainable development: The role of digital technologies on social development and well-being of all”.

Opening remarks: Daniela Bas, Director, Division for Inclusive Social Development, DESA

Panel Discussion 

Moderated by: Amine Lamrabat, Associate Public Information Officer, DISD/DES

  • Alison Bryant, Senior Vice President, AARP Research and Lead for Technology Work 
  • Anupam Sibal, Group Director, Medical Services, Apollo Hospitals Enterprise, India (tbc)
  • Heidrun Mollenkopf, German National Association of Senior Citizens’ Organisations 
  • Michael Hodin, CEO of the Global Coalition on Aging
  • Osarieme Omokaro, User Experience Researcher, Google 

Download a copy of this document here. (PDF 358 KB)

#WSIS2020 #OlderPersons | @UN4Ageing 

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development-New York, please visit ngosocdev.org or facebook.com/NGOCSocD. For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-NY, please visit www.ngocoa-ny.org.  For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-Geneva, please visit ageingcommitteegeneva.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-Vienna, please visit ngoageingvie.org.

[Webinar] ICTs and Older Persons

: ICTs and Older Persons: Universal Design, Standards, ICT and Older Persons in Support of UN Decade of Healthy Ageing

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

02:00 PM in Amsterdam, Berlin, Rome, Stockholm, Vienna, 14:00-15:00 Geneva Time

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CoNGO Notes: To learn more about the NGO Committee on Ageing – Geneva, please visit ageingcommitteegeneva.org.