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  • Author: Laura E. Bailey, Nanjala Nyabola
  • Publication Date: 06-2021
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Center on International Cooperation
  • Abstract: The global pandemic has laid bare the digital inequities across vertical (income) and horizontal (social, political, and identity) dimensions, while exposing the extent to which pre-pandemic approaches to bridging the digital divide have been dominated by economic considerations even while they are not universally treated as policy priorities. Access to digital is a product of both material investment and political will. Where there is no conscious effort to include marginalized communities into digitalization plans, these communities can be left behind. In countries where identity-based exclusion is routinely built into political behavior, there can be systematic patterns of exclusion of specific groups (e.g., the indigenous First Peoples of North America, the Roma of Europe, or the Somali of northeast Kenya). Many countries around the world have such communities, and any work to digitalize a country must be founded on politically and socially conscious efforts to include groups that may be left behind by historical marginalization. This brief reviews key aspects of the digital divide, with special attention to exclusion and inequality, emphasizing that poor connectivity isn’t just about wealth—it is also about inequality. This paper examines the following: That COVID-19 has shown how poor policymaking in digital access and use deepens the current inequalities in addition to creating new ones, Digital equity through recent thinking, research—and why it matters, and Experience with digital equity initiatives (pre- and post-pandemic). Finally, the authors provide key recommendations for potential digital policies and interventions that can advance equality and inclusion.
  • Topic: Inequality, Digital Culture, COVID-19, Exclusion
  • Political Geography: South Asia, Latin America
  • Author: Alex Evans, David Steven
  • Publication Date: 01-2012
  • Content Type: Policy Brief
  • Institution: Center on International Cooperation
  • Abstract: Recent months have seen increasing interest in the idea that Rio+20 could be the launch pad for a new set of 'Sustainable Development Goals' (SDGs). But what would SDGs cover, what would a process to define and then implement them look like, and what would some of the key political challenges be? This short briefing sets out a short summary of current thinking the issue, followed by thoughts about the way forward.
  • Topic: Development, Economics, Foreign Aid, Foreign Direct Investment
  • Political Geography: Latin America