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From Digital Divide to Digital Opportunities for Development

The Digital Opportunity Initiative (DOI), a public private partnership of Accenture, the Markle Foundation and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP), was launched at the G-8 Okinawa Summit in 2000, with the aim of identifying the roles that information and communication technologies (ICT) can play in fostering sustainable economic development and enhancing social equity.

The DOI undertook a detailed examination of the experiences of the deployment of ICT in a broad range of developing nations, the results of which are presented in its report, Creating a Development Dynamic. The report concludes that the debate regarding ICT versus traditional development activities represents a false choice. On the contrary, ICT appears to be an essential component of development initiatives and can act as a powerful overall enabler of development.

The report lays out a strategic framework for action that developing countries and their partners can deploy in order to enable the former to reap the benefits of the networked economy and an information society. The report issues a strong call to action for the international community to assist developing countries in taking advantage of ICT's potential and integrating ICT into the mainstream of their development activities.