Young girls at a school in Yaoundé, the capital of Cameroon use a tablet during a lesson.
© UNICEF/Frank Dejongh

Tech needs girls, and girls need tech

More and more young women and girls are highlighting the importance of access and safety in the digital world. Marking International Girls in ICT Day, on Thursday, UN agencies have issued a call to action to ensure equal access to digital learning opportunities.

World Bank/Simone D. McCourtie

It's high time tech community tackled digital challenge together, says expert panel senior official

It’s “high time” the international community decided how best to embrace the potential benefits of digital technology - and protect against its unexpected negative consequences - a senior official from a panel of tech experts appointed by UN chief António Guterres said on Thursday.

In an interview with UN News, Ambassador Amandeep Gill told Daniel Johnson that The High-Level Panel on Digital Cooperation’s mandate to be truly inclusive, would be key to the recommendations it must deliver in nine months.

UN News/Daniel Johnson

“Smart tech” used to teach Sudan’s former child soldiers

An innovative project that has given former child soldiers access to education in Sudan shows the value of embracing technology for sustainable development, the UN said on Thursday.

According to the UN Children’s Fund UNICEF, these vulnerable youngsters have been able to follow the country’s national curriculum using solar-powered electronic tablets.

The initiative is being rolled out to displaced communities in Jordan, Lebanon and Greece, as UNICEF’s Sally Burnheim told Daniel Johnson.

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Priyanka Shankar

Terrorist groups exploit social media, ICTs to fund activities

Terrorist groups are exploiting all the new social media platforms and communication technologies to expand and fund their activities, according to a representative from the UN’s Counter Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (CTED).

Delphine Schantz, one of CTED’s legal officers stated that internet sites and “crowdfunding” platforms are being misused to buy weapons online and raise funds for other terrorist purposes.

UN Photo/Eskinder Debebe

Global response needed to stop use of ICTs to commit terrorist acts

A global response is needed to stop extremism on the internet and in social media, the head of the UN’s anti-terrorism body (UNCTED) has urged.

Extremist groups have been using information and communications technologies (ICT) to spread propaganda, recruit, generate funds, share training materials and engage in the illicit weapons trade.

Some of the most popular social networking services are said to be devising strategies to counter the online activities of these groups.

UN Photo/JC McIlwaine

Vision, training and funding crucial to growing tech in Africa

Investing in training is critical to expand the tech sector in Africa, according to Rwanda’s Minister of Youth and ICT (information and communications technologies).

Jean Philbert Nsengimana said his government has supported tech entrepreneurs and small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) by providing a “hub” where their ideas can be turned into businesses.

UN Photo/JC McIlwaine

Widespread communications technology is key to achieving SDGs

The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) can only be achieved with the help of widespread information and communication technology, or ICT.

That’s according to Daniel Sepulveda, Deputy Assistant Secretary for the United States Bureau of Economic and Business Affairs.

Ambassador Sepulveda is chairman of the 2016 World Summit on the Information Society Forum (WSIS) that will take place this week in Geneva.