Making ICT4D Green: Three Focus Areas for Improving the Environmental Impact of the Information and Communication Technology for Development Sector
The global digital transformation is generating many positive impacts, and digital technologies have become essential tools for climate and environmental action. But according to Nora Lindström at Catholic Relief Services, the growing use of digital technology is also causing some significant environmental challenges — and the “Information and Communication Technology for Development (ICT4D)” sector must address them. She discusses several ways to increase the tech industry's sustainability, focusing on three key elements of ICT: generative AI, broadband access and electronic equipment.
An African Approach to Online Education: An Innovative Platform Aims to Prepare the Continent’s Youth for the Jobs of the Future
By 2050, one in every four individuals in the world will be African. In response to this demographic shift, it's essential to ensure that young Africans possess the necessary skills to compete in the global job market. But according to Adewale Yusuf at AltSchool Africa, conventional educational approaches have failed to meet these students' unique needs. He explains how AltSchool Africa developed an online platform based on African approaches to learning, and how the platform provides young students with the job skills they need to succeed in an increasingly global economy.
Leveraging Artificial Intelligence for Cybersecurity in Africa: How AI Can Help Ensure the Continent’s Digital Safety
Cyberattacks are increasing globally, and Africa experiences the highest volume in the world. According to Lanre Ogungbe at Prembly, this has resulted in significant repercussions for businesses and entire economies. He explores how cybercriminals target Africa’s unique vulnerabilities, and how artificial intelligence (AI) is poised to transform the scale and scope of both cybercrime and the cybersecurity efforts that aim to address it on the continent.
Beyond Illumination: An Off-Grid Energy Provider in Indonesia Innovates to Maximize the Impact of Solar Home Systems
Indonesia, a vast archipelago of 18,000 scattered islands, faces unique energy access challenges. Hanko Scheffers at All Solar World discusses the obstacles to rural electrification in the country, and explores how All Solar World has addressed them through its unique take on solar home systems (SHS). He explains how the company has innovated on the technology itself (through features like Wi-Fi integration), while also optimizing its dissemination network and financing options, in an effort to maximize the reach and impact of SHS in rural communities.
Should I Stay or Should I Go?: Why Latin American Entrepreneurs Should Stay in the Region — And How Corporate Venturing Can Power Their Growth
Many young entrepreneurs in Latin America are leaving the region to pursue their entrepreneurial journey abroad. International legal advisor Eugenia Di Marco explores the reasons behind this decision, and discusses a promising source of support that could convince them to stay: corporate venturing — i.e., investments and initiatives aimed at supporting external innovation and building a vibrant business ecosystem where startups can thrive.
Driving the EV Transition in LMICs: How Low- and Middle-Income Countries Can Accelerate the Adoption of Electric Vehicles
Amid mounting climate concerns, public health issues and economic challenges, the case for low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) to transition to electric vehicles (EVs) is compelling. Based on the strategies adopted by numerous countries, including many pioneer LMICs, Daphnée Benayoun, Kiran Willmot and Debashish Roychoudhury at Dalberg share four priority drivers that governments should consider to accelerate and manage their EV transition.
Job Growth is More than Digital Job Growth: Why Both Online and Offline Enterprises Deserve Investor Support
The appeal of the tech-driven economy can be hard for investors to resist. But Liliosa Mbirimi at the Leila Janah Foundation argues that focusing exclusively on the digital realm can exclude many offline entrepreneurs that are making major contributions to job creation in emerging markets. She discusses the need for investors to support both digital and non-digital entrepreneurs, and shares learnings from the Foundation's efforts to provide this support in Kenya and Uganda.
As 2024 gets underway, we'd like to announce the results of NextBillion’s annual “Most Influential Article of the Year” contest. This year's contest featured a strong slate of articles, covering a diverse array of topics ranging from systems change to decarbonization, in sectors that included energy, agriculture, finance and more. We've highlighted the three winners, as selected by our readers, in this article.