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A customer sets-up M-Pesa money transfer servive inside a store operated by Kenyan's telecom operator Safaricom.

Reuters

What We’re Watching: Boosting access, gender equality, and trust in the digital economy

More tha 3 billion people are still not operating within the digital economy, thus widening global inequality. We look at three issues the world’s grappling with to bring them on board.

Why internet access is everything

Scan any UN report’s “development goals” and the importance of expanding global internet access becomes obvious. To end poverty, boost healthcare, improve the quality of education, reduce all forms of inequality of opportunity, create jobs, power innovation, and enhance life in the world’s cities, more human beings need reliable access to the internet. That’s why it’s disappointing that half the world’s countries remain slow to introduce information and communications technologies (ICT) in schools and that too many poor countries still lack the mobile broadband needed to connect. The pandemic has been a good-news, bad-news story here. The virus has forced greater investment in ICT and provided people everywhere with obvious incentives to learn how to use it. But a difference in means ensures the gap between rich and poor countries has grown wider. The solution to these problems depends, as ever, on greater international investment. This isn’t charity, and it isn’t simply a matter of “fairness.” All countries need a stronger, more resilient, and more sustainable global economy. Shared prosperity depends now more than ever on access to the internet for everyone.

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Lowering Costs of Poverty With Digital & Economic Access | Economic Empowerment | GZERO Media

Lowering costs of poverty with digital & economic access

By the end of the decade, 70% of all new value in the global economy will come from digitally enabled businesses. The pandemic accelerated a push toward digitalization, especially in developing nations, yet nearly 4 billion people are still offline, and 1.4 billion don't have a bank account.

Expanding access to digital tools for individuals and small businesses is a no-brainer, but easier said than done. So, what can we do to expand digital trade further, come up with fairer and safer remittances and digital payments, and push to include everyone in tomorrow's digital-first economy?

To get some answers, GZERO hosted in partnership with Visa the livestream conversation "Closing the Gap: Digital Tools for Economic Empowerment," moderated by JJ Ramberg, co-founder of Goodpods and former host of MSNBC's Your Business.

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Watch live October 19: Can access to digital tools transform the world's economy?

Is digitization crucial to economic growth? GZERO Media is partnering with Visa to explore what it means when 70% of the global economy’s growth in the next decade is projected to come from digitally-enabled businesses – yet 3.7 billion people lack internet access. What are the tools and initiatives needed to bring more people into the digital economy?

Live on Wednesday, October 19, our expert panel will explore the impact of digitization on empowering consumers and small businesses. Please register to attend.

Closing the Gap: Digital Tools for Economic Empowerment

Wednesday, October 19, 2022 | 11 am ET / 8 am PT

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COVID Impact on Education & Geopolitical Consequences | Gerald Butts | Global Stage | GZERO Media

COVID's impact on education and its long-term geopolitical consequences: Gerald Butts

It's not just kids spending too much time on their screens because they got so used to doing everything remotely during the pandemic.

The impact of COVID-related educational disruption - and the growing inequality gap - could have big geopolitical fallout in the future. Why?

Because with diminished education comes fewer economic opportunities. That will likely exacerbate already deep divisions, says Eurasia Group Vice Chairman Gerald Butts.

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Want to Overcome the Poverty Trap? Invest in Education | Global Stage | GZERO Media

How to get students back on track after the Great Education Disruption

As the 77th UN General Assembly gets underway, much of the attention will go toward how to breathe new life into the Sustainable Development Goals. Why? Because the pandemic wiped out years of progress on meeting the 17 SDGs, especially No. 4: ensuring inclusive and equitable quality education and promoting lifelong learning opportunities for all.

COVID disrupted the lives of some 1.6 billion students around the world. Almost 150 million missed about half of in-person classes in 2020, and 24 million will never return to school.

So, how can we get education back on track before it's too late? Several experts weighed in during the Global Stage livestream conversation "Transforming Education" hosted by GZERO Media in partnership with Microsoft.

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Watch live on Sept 15: transforming education

Live from the UN General Assembly: Transforming Education

Thursday, September 15, 2022
11 AM ET / 8 AM PT / 5 PM CEST
https://www.gzeromedia.com/globalstage

Click through to WATCH today's livestream: During the pandemic, millions of children lost access to education. How can we leverage digital platforms to deliver better access to quality education, and ensure that those who put school on hold during the crisis are not left behind?

As the 77th session of the UN General Assembly gets underway, GZERO Media will host a Global Stage livestream, in partnership with Microsoft, to discuss “Transforming Education on Thursday, September 15, at 8 am PDT / 11 am EDT.

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COVID & War Highlight Need To Get More People Online | Vickie Robinson | Global Stage | GZERO Media

Want global equality? Get more people online

We think we live in a digital-first world — but there's no "digital" at all for 37% of the global population.

That's a big problem in today's economy, where you'll miss out on many opportunities for advancement if you're not connected. The digital divide is thus widening the equality gap.

Being offline "places an automatic limit on your ability to be productive and has major ramifications for our society," says Vickie Robinson, head of Microsoft's Airband Initiative to expand broadband access throughout the developing world.

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Silver Lining From COVID? Women Around the World Got Access to Digital Payments | GZERO Media

Silver lining from COVID? Women around the world got access to digital payments

There are few silver linings from the pandemic, but for Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation CEO Mark Suzman, one of them is "a massive expansion of social payments to women across the world." Women traditionally excluded from such systems in countries like Kenya or Pakistan, he says, finally got online — with immense potential to set up businesses for instance in agriculture. These are the "green shoots that we need to collectively build on" so after COVID we get a "faster, more effective, and more equitable recovery for the entire world."

He spoke during "Measuring what matters: How women are critical to pandemic recovery," a livestream conversation on October 28, 2021, hosted by GZERO Media in partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

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