World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search

 

'Digital Divide' Must Be Narrowed

'Digital Divide' Must Be Narrowed Through Education, Knowledge-Sharing – UNESCO

New York, Nov 3 2005 3:00PM

With 90 per cent of all Internet users living in developed countries, governments must narrow the gap between North and South by expanding quality education for all, increasing community access to information and communication technology, and sharing scientific knowledge across borders, a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) report released today says.

The report, "Towards Knowledge Societies," launched today on the eve of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), analyses the increasingly important role played by knowledge in economic growth and advances that it can serve as a new springboard for development in the countries of the South.

"Those countries and communities that don't recognize this huge reliance on knowledge as a driving force will be left behind," Elizabeth Longworth, Director of UNESCO's Information Society Division, told a press conference at UN Headquarters in New York.

She added that those countries and communities that recognize the importance of cognitive skills and make the resulting investment in education, lifelong learning and cultural facilities and in their research and innovation systems will prosper.

Knowledge societies contribute to the well-being of individuals and communities, and encompass social, ethical and political dimensions while information societies are based on technological breakthroughs that risk providing little more than "a mass of indistinct data" for those who don't have the skills to benefit from it, according to the report.

An example of a successful "knowledge society" is Singapore, which started out as a developing country of shantytowns at independence and achieved economic growth rates that surpass those of most industrialized nations in just four decades by promoting education and creativity.

The work is the first in a new series of UNESCO reports, to be published every two years, focusing on subjects at the heart of the Organization's mission such as cultural diversity and sustainable development.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 



UN: Visionary ‘Blue Transformation’ Strategy To Enhance Underwater Food Systems

Record levels of fisheries and aquaculture production are making a critical contribution to global food security, the UN Ocean Conference under way in Lisbon, Portugal, heard on Wednesday...
More>>
Abu Akleh Shooting: Fatal Shot Came From Israeli Forces, Says OHCHR
Israeli forces were behind the fatal shooting of Al Jazeera journalist Shireen Abu Akleh in the West Bank - not indiscriminate Palestinian firing - the UN human rights office, OHCHR, alleged on Friday... More>>


Ethiopia: Conflict, Drought, Dwindling Food Support, Threatens Lives Of 20 Million

Hunger is tightening its grip on more than 20 million Ethiopians who are facing conflict in the north, drought in the south and dwindling food and nutrition support beginning next month, the UN food relief agency warned on Thursday... More>>


UN Ocean Conference: Opens With Call For Urgent Action To Tackle Ocean Emergency
With climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution exacting a devastating toll on the world’s ocean — critical to food security, economic growth and the environment... More>>

World Vision: Deeply Concerned For Thousands Affected By Afghanistan Quake
World Vision is deeply concerned about the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Afghanistan in the wake of a powerful earthquake in the early hours of this morning... More>>



Malaysia: UN Experts Welcome Announcement To Abolish Mandatory Death Penalty

UN human rights experts* today commended an announcement made by the Malaysian government that it will abolish the country’s mandatory death penalty and encouraged Parliament to take concrete steps to pass the agreement into law... More>>