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Tech for Good: The Role of ICT in Achieving the SDGs (edX)

What opportunities and challenges do digital technologies present for the development of our society? Tech for Good was developed by UNESCO and Cetic, the Brazilian Network Information Center’s Regional Center for Studies on the Development of the Information Society. It brings together thought leaders and changemakers in the fields of information and communication technologies (ICT) and sustainable development to show how digital technologies are empowering billions of people around the world by providing access to education, healthcare, banking, and government services; and how “big data” is being used to inform smarter, evidence-based policies to improve people’s lives in fundamental ways.

It also addresses the new challenges that technology can introduce, such as privacy, data management, risks to cybersecurity, e-waste, and the widening of social divides. Ultimately, Tech for Good looks at the ways in which stakeholders are coming together to answer big questions about what our future will look like in a hyper-digitized world.

Tech for Good: The Role of ICT in Achieving the SDGs | SDG Academy on edX

Update for 2019: We expect Spanish transcripts to be available starting in September, with more languages to follow throughout the year.

This course is for:

– Technology specialists who want to understand more about how ICT is being used to improve people’s lives around the world.

– Sustainable development practitioners who need to understand the opportunities and limitations of technology in a development context.

– Advanced undergraduates and graduate students interested in the key concepts and practices of this exciting and ever-changing field.

What you’ll learn

– ICT can improve access to knowledge and services, promote transparency, and encourage collaboration

– Responsible collection and use of data requires governance, security, and trust

– ICT projects should be contextualized and inclusive

– Technology is not neutral! Be aware of bias in design and implementation


Module 1: Welcome to the Digital Age

Introduction to the Course

Bridging the Digital Divide

Three Approaches to ICT for the SDGs

Module 2: Technology for Governments and Citizens

Equity and Access to Services

User-Driven Public Administration

It’s All About the Data

The Open Government Approach

Case Study: Aadhaar in India

The Challenges of Digital Government

Module 3: ICT Infrastructure

Enabling ICT: The Role of Infrastructure

Promoting Digital Inclusivity

Innovations in Infrastructure

Building Smart Sustainable Cities

ICT as Infrastructure: A Look at Societal Platforms

Module 4: ICT Innovations in Health

Achieving Universal Health Coverage

Improving Healthcare Delivery

Involving the Community

Evidence in Action: Success Stories of ICT and Health

Emerging Challenges and Opportunities

Module 5: Learning in Knowledge Societies

The Ecosystem of ICT for Education

Education for a Connected World

Sharing Knowledge: ICT, Openness, and Inclusion

Measuring ICT and Education: Frameworks

Measuring ICT and Education: Data and Indicators

Rethinking ICT for Education Policies

Module 6: Promoting Financial Inclusion

An Introduction to Financial Services

The Potential of Digital Platforms

Mobile Payments for Marginalized Communities

ICT for Enabling Access to Credit

Replacing the Cash Economy

The Challenges of ICT-enabled Financial Inclusion

Module 7: Measurement and Metrics

Managing Data for the SDGs

ICT Innovation for Statistical Development

Engaging with Data: Communications and Citizen Empowerment

Case Study: Brazil’s

Measuring ICT

ICT for Monitoring the SDGs

Limitations of ICT for Monitoring the SDGs

Module 8: Artificial Intelligence

An Introduction to Artificial Intelligence

Who Drives the Agenda on “AI for Good”?

Implications for Discrimination and Exclusion

The Human Side of AI: Risks and Ethics

Module 9: Concerns for our Digital Future

Privacy and the Importance of Trust

Knowing your Data Rights


The Downsides of Digital

Module 10: The Way Forward

The New Workforce: Six Points about the Future of Work

The Meaning of Work in the Digital Era

The Open Movement

Closing Thoughts on ICT for the SDGs