May 27th, 2015

WSIS Forum 2015 – CTO calls for universally accessible ICTs as specific post-2015 development goal

LONDON, 27 MAY 2015 – In an address delivered at the World Summit on the Information Society Forum 2015 taking place on 25 – 29 May 2015 in Geneva, Professor Tim Unwin, Secretary-General of the Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation (CTO) has called for “a Sustainable Development Goal specifying that ICTs are universally accessible and used effectively for development interventions” to be added to the post-2015 development goals.

According to Professor Unwin, there is “enormous potential to use ICTs to improve the lives of all of the world’s peoples. However, to date, their fundamental ability to accelerate economic and social change has meant that all too often ICTs have led to an increase in inequality across the world at a range of scales.

“For everyone to benefit from the use of ICTs, it is crucial that ICTs are both available and affordable for all. Universal access to connectivity should be a high priority for all countries and international organisations”, Professor Unwin added.

Professor Unwin’s call follows a Statement on the Role of ICTs in the post-2015 Development Goals issued by the London-based organisation at the end of last year.

“Let us never forget that the power of ICTs lies in the hands of those who use them. They can be used for good, or for evil. May those of us gathered here at the WSIS Forum commit to ensuring that we do indeed use ICTs to make the world a better place, in the interests of the poorest and most marginalised”, he concluded.

Tim WSIS Resize 2

Download Professor Unwin’s WSIS Forum 2015 address in full here.

Download the CTO’s Statement on the Role of ICTs in the post-2015 Development Goals here.

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