Though digital technology often seems out of reach in developing countries where some people are struggling to find clean water and food, one can look to Digital India—an initiative by the Government of India to integrate digital technology into society—to see how such technologies offer solutions toward ending global poverty.

The initiatives of Digital India include creating digital infrastructure, delivering government services to citizens digitally, improving digital literacy, and expanding high-speed internet access for rural areas.

According to news site DNA India, the Government of India hopes to reach nationwide information frames by March 2017. By 2020, the government has plans to train over 150,000 students to work in the IT sector. Wi-fi access will be digitally accessible by all universities, country-wide.

According to H.C. Hong, president and CEO of Samsung India, the popularity of smartphones and mobile social media has caused a large growth in online activity and technology adaptation of young people in India.

For digital technology to become a success in developing countries, a high-skilled workforce needs to exist in the sector. This opens up the job market, allows for professional training, and expands business growth that all help to reduce poverty.

This year, Burkina Faso became the first African nation to use cloud networking technology thanks to French telecommunications company Alcatel-Lucent.

According to the African Media Agency (AMA), the Danish government will be funding the project with a $19.9 billion investment that will provide for digital public service development and the training of 100 employees.

In Burkina Faso, digital services for health, education, justice, services will be provided by the network and assist the country in facilitating economic growth. Danish Ambassador to Burkina Faso, Bo Jensen, explains the region’s digital technology solution to ending poverty:

He states, “The objectives pursued by the project are in line with the national development strategy and sectorial strategies. It is an innovative approach using state of the art technology to pursue poverty alleviation and good governance…We strongly believe that this project will lead to more transparency and improved public financial management.”

Cloud access in poor, rural areas offers information and services that may not have been accessible in certain regions of the world ever before. People have access to endless information, such as weather reports, research and stock market news—consumer information that can lead to market activity and stimulate the economy.

Kelsey Lay

Sources: African Media Agency, Alcatel-Lucent, DNA India
Photo: Flickr


A group of “techies” are working to build a community of volunteers who will use technology to alleviate poverty throughout India.

Code for India is an initiative to eliminate poverty in India through technological advancements and solutions. The organization is aligned with Prime Minister Modi’s vision of Digital India.

Digital India aims to expand growth in electronic services, products, manufacturing and job opportunities. The program hopes to provide broadband highways, universal access to mobile connectivity and public Internet access.

Code for India is a nonprofit organization and was founded in Silicone Valley. It is one of the fastest growing tech communities in the world. The organization has helped build technology solutions for elections, city governance, women’s safety and education.

Code for India currently has more than 5,000 software engineers of Indian origin working in all different parts of the world. These engineers are donating their time free of cost to work on projects that will benefit those in poverty in India.

Karl Mehta is one of the engineers who helped start Code for India and make it into a successful organization. Mehta believes that technology can be leveraged to completely eliminate poverty in India.

Mehta said that Code for India is helping in the development of India from a digital standpoint towards a bigger goal of nation building. The techies who donate their time and talent do so out of the kindness of their hearts.

Code for India’s mission statement is, “to build scalable technology solutions for non-profits and social causes that will enable them to have a greater impact on society.”

One of Code for India’s most recent projects is ‘Skill Up India,’ which is a global open-source platform used to train millions of people across India to prepare them for the 21st century labor force needs. There are 350 million youth under the age of 35 in India, which provides a great asset to India’s workforce once they are properly trained.

Code for India is currently working on 37 projects and 25 non-government organizations.

Code for India will continue to work with Prime Minister Modi’s Digital India initiative to create successful tech programs, which will help to alleviate poverty throughout India.

Jordan Connell

Sources: Code For India, YourStory 1, YourStory 2
Photo: Flickr