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Information & Communications Technology

Despite the great progress in deepening regional connectivity through information and communication technologies, Asia and the Pacific is still the most digitally divided region in the world, with less than eight per cent of the population connected to affordable and reliable high-speed Internet. As a result, millions of people are shut out from transformative digital opportunities in education, health and financial services. Women and girls, in particular, have lower levels of access to broadband Internet and other knowledge-enhancing technologies. The Asia-Pacific Information Superhighway initiative aims to increase the availability and affordability of broadband Internet for all people across Asia and the Pacific.

 

Internet Exchange Points (IXPs)

In support of the Asia-Pacific Information Superhighway (AP-IS) initiative, Internet Society (ISOC) has been mapping out the Internet Exchange Points (IXPs) in Member States of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission of Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). The interactive map shows a heat map of IXPs along with the percentage of coverage. It also tallies the number of major cities in each Member State, and shows the number of covered versus uncovered cities.

FTTP Opportunities in Asia Pacific

There are several ways to promote fiber to the premises (FTTP) deployment in the Asia-Pacific region. The digital divide in the region is extreme: with several developing countries lacking access to broadband while others have very high rates of deployment and penetration of FTTP. The article discusses several opportunities and challenges in tackling the digital divide.

UNCTAD's E-Commerce Week

Developments in ICT connectivity is essential for e-commerce to flourish, according to United Nations conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). Discussions centered around the theme “Development Dimensions of Digital Platforms” will be held at the Palais des Nations in Geneva on 16-20 April 2018. The fourth E-Commerce Week is expected to explore the role of digital platforms toward sustainable development and ways to harness these technologies.

Egov4Women Online Toolkit

On the sidelines of the 62nd Commission on the Status of Women in New York on 16 March, ESCAP launched the EGovforWomen Online Toolkit – the first region-wide toolbox to support gender mainstreaming of E-Government. Through a set of five comprehensive modules, this innovative public resource provides key pointers for policymakers on gender-responsive design of e-service delivery, e-participation and connectivity initiatives, as well as introduces a capabilities-based approach to evaluate E-Government for women’s empowerment.

Fifth APFSD side event, ICT for Transformation and Resilience

The side event will showcase the work of UN agencies (ESCAP, APT, ITU, UNESCO, UNICEF, UNV) and its partners (member States, research organizations, academia, private sector) in fostering partnerships with government and stakeholders at country level in using ICT tools for e-resilience and societal transformation in sectors which cover the work programmes of the UN agencies (e.g. early warning and disaster risk reduction, information superhighway, telecommunication, capacity building, education, volunteers, water and sanitation, etc.).

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