ICT for sustainable development: how digital solutions can drive progress towards the SDGs

20th July 2017

On July 13th, Luis Neves, the Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSI) Chairman, participated to the High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development in a side event organized by the ITU and GeSI in New York. This event focused on the potential of the Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) to achieve all the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

With the theme "Eradicating poverty and promoting prosperity in a changing world," the 2017 HLPF goal was to review progress on SDGs, including SDG9, which seeks to build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation. While ICT links most closely to this SDG, the #SystemTransformation report launched in 2016 by the GeSI shows that ICT has a key role to play in every single SDG.

In addition to exploring the data from this report, Luis Neves showcased the solutions offered by the results and key findings of the #SMARTer2030 launched by GeSI in 2015. Both research assesses and quantifies how digital solutions can close the SDG achievement gaps and enable the transition to a low-carbon economy.

The session was also the occasion to present the report “Fast Forward Progress: Leveraging Tech to Achieve the Global Goals” launched on the same day (13 July) in Geneva. Coordinated by the ITU, the report is a contains insights and thought leadership as to how ICTs can help promote the achievement of the SDGs. 

As we are talking about solutions, here are some solutions presented by Luis Neves and which can also be found on the dedicated platform #SystemTransformation

Shezlong, an Egypt-based, start-up company, looks to offer online psychotherapy for millions of sufferers within the country and the Middle East using Microsoft Azure, a fully scalable, secure and accessible cloud-based platform. Shezlong is trying to fill this service gap by offering online treatment from qualified psychotherapists. The online nature of this service helps overcome cultural barriers and social stigma typically associated with seeking and receiving treatment.

T-Systems has developed a one-stop integrated supply chain management solution for electronic warehouse logistics. The solution has been implemented at the Brau Union brewery in Austria. The solution ensures the intelligent warehouse based on efficient, eco-friendly supply chain.

This philanthropic initiative drives innovation in education through technology, social innovation and relationships, to ensure all students have the skills they need to succeed in school and beyond. By investing in new tools and solutions that leverage its unique technologies and capabilities, AT&T enables personalized and mobilized learning for students of all ages and backgrounds.

Together with Oxfam, Nokia is piloting a web-based system to monitor water availability in drought-prone regions of Ethiopia and Kenya. This system provides real-time information to quickly identify the early onset of drought, enabling response efforts to be mobilized before the situation reaches a crisis point.

To have access to the pictures of the event, you can click here.