What would a better world mean to you in terms of technology? Especially post COVID-19? To me it would mean a world where people, organizations and nations are able to keep up with the pace at which technology and connectivity are moving. A world where nobody is left behind in the economic recoveries that good connectivity has the ability to drive, where everyone can use technology in one way or another to make their lives easier, more productive, and therefore more enriched.
Technology has evolved very rapidly over the past 30 years and what COVID-19 has revealed is that digital infrastructure has not kept pace with it. Something we wrote about in a previous article for example is that good mobile phones should no longer be considered a luxury but a necessity. It is sad that over half the world’s population still do not have access to digital technologies and internet access. This is a very huge part of the population that could otherwise be building their nations as more tech driven opportunities arise, and take part in economic recovery of their countries.
In a keynote speech delivered at the Better World Summit 2020 by the Huawei Senior vice President and Director of the Board Catherine Chen, she noted that Huawei envisions a more connected, intelligent, and innovative future. An inclusive, sustainable, and better future by all, for all. The summit which was attended by several thousand people online from more than 80 countries was broadcast live in Chinese, English, Spanish, French, Russian, Korean, Japanese, and Arabic.
Other speakers at the Better World Summit who also shared their views on how to build a better world in the future are senior officers from organizations like ITU, GSMA, and ECTA and all were in agreement about the need for unified ICT standards in enhancing digital inclusion, and embracing new normals as they rebuild their economies. There were also regulators and policy makers from different countries, senior management of multiple industries and analysts who explained how the digital economy will play a part in reviving real economies.
Chen spoke on the recent World Bank report that highlighted the glaring and fast growing gap between the digital economy and the lack of commensurate digital skills. To address this, Huawei is continuing with its Seeds of the Future program that it launched in 2008 to deliberately develop talent in ICT. The program which is getting moved online due to the pandemic has so far positively impacted over 30,000 university students in 108 countries. Having the program online has actually netted more outstanding students than ever before.
For Catherine Chen’s full speech, let’s go to page 2.