09.03.2012 - UNESCO Office in Venice

Feeding 7 Billion Minds

© OCCAM - Infopoverty Poster

World population has reached 7 billion according to the United Nations 2011 State of World Population Report which looks at the dynamics behind the numbers and explains the trends that are defining our world. This Report documents actions that people in vastly different countries and circumstances are taking in their own communities to make the most of their and our world. What challenges lie ahead of us? Besides the concern that the globe may not have enough food and water to sustain rapidly growing populations, this figure offers an unprecedented opportunity for humanity to reflect and plan soundly for this challenge; the digital revolution can be a great tool of synapses.

All this will be tackled at the round table titled “Feeding 7 Billion Minds” scheduled on 9 March 2012 at the UNESCO’s premises in Venice (Palazzo Zorzi). The organizer of the event, Paolo Avrese, Deputy for the Environment – Sustainable Development of the UNESCO Club in Venice will introduce interveners: Agostino Cortesi, Pro Rector, Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Roberto Rossi representing The Observatory for Cultural and Audiovisual Communication in the Mediterranean and in the World (OCCAM), Mario Scalet, Head of Science Unit - UNESCO Venice Office, and Michele Vianello, Director-General of VEnice GAteway for Science and Technology (VEGA).

“Feeding 7 Billion Minds” will be the occasion to present the upcoming Infopoverty World Conference 2012 “Who drives the digital revolution? Development through Innovation” (22-23 March 2012, New York). Established in 2001 under the auspices of the United Nations, the Infopoverty World Conference has become an event of critical importance held annually at the United Nations Headquarters. The event is devoted to the role the digital revolution can play in development strategies. The Conference over the years has benefitted from the participation of leaders in their fields of analysis, strategic evaluation and applied practice. Its aim is to contribute to fighting poverty with innovative and appropriate use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT).

The Infopoverty World Conference is the hub of a conception of digital that goes beyond gadgets and social networks to the application of digital tools and facilities to the needs of the poor through the wise use of low cost and smart technologies. As the world has become almost entirely connected, it is important that the benefits of the digital revolution be made available to those most in need. The digital revolution also offers business opportunities for the companies, local and global, that are able to provide products and services that answer to the needs of those at the base of the pyramid.

The UN provides a convening platform and an approach focused on the needs of the “bottom billion” that will allow the question of who drives the digital revolution to be carefully debated. The digital revolution offers the promise that countries of the Global South can re-engineer their systems by by-passing outmoded forms of technology and integrating the digital opportunities in their economic development. The result should be better governance, new markets and job opportunities for the next generations. The results will be seen in fields as diverse as health, education, governance, agriculture and others that can support efforts for health, education, job creation, democracy, climate changes, food security as well as the empowerment of women.

The objective of the Infopoverty World Conference is to provide a high-profile platform for in-depth discussions on the interlinks between ICT and development, inspire new public-private partnerships in this field and encourage creative solutions addressing the Millennium Development Goals.

Link : http://www.infopoverty.net/

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