Despite rapid technological advancements reported in some of the member countries of the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP), rural schools in developing countries are left largely unconnected and under-resourced. The slow progress poses two challenges.
Most countries in Asia and the Pacific have built their own fibre-optic backbone networks. Many cross-border terrestrial fibre-optic cable systems have been established between neighbouring countries through bilateral agreements. Yet, this regional network of terrestrial cables is not effectively managed and utilized because of operational challenges.
Measuring the Digital Divide in the Asia-Pacific Region for the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific
This report’s findings suggest that the best way to measure the digital divide in the Asia-Pacific region is to use a multidimensional approach that captures the economic, social, political and cultural complexities of the digital divide, and reflects on their impact on individuals, businesses and governments.
Access to the Internet contributes to socio-economic development. However, access to affordable and reliable broadband connectivity is not universal, particularly in countries with special needs (Least Developed Countries (LDCs), Land-locked Developing Countries (LLDCs) and Small Island Developing States (SIDS)).
Information and communications technology (ICT) has become an indispensable tool in our daily lives. The evolution of ICT through the Internet is making the globe a community that can create, share and acquire information and knowledge across locations and time. The impact of ICT on economic and social development is what we call the Third Industrial Revolution.