UN Helps Expand Information Communications Technology Training Throughout the Asia-Pacific Region

The United Nations today gathered trainers of Information Communication Technology (ICT) from 19 Asia-Pacific countries and five international organizations, including the UN Economic Commission for Africa and the Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia, for a workshop meant to give rise to better use of ICT for development throughout the region.

The workshop – which is taking place in Seongnam, Republic of Korea – is the Second Annual Regional Training of Trainers Academy Workshop organized by the United Nations Asian and Pacific Training Centre for Information and Communication Technology for Development (APCICT), a subsidiary the UN’s Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (ESCAP). The workshop is being attended by over 40 new and returning participants comprised of instructors from national training institutes and senior government officials from ICT ministries.

The workshop will focus on training participants to teach the Academy of ICT Essentials for Government Leaders curriculum, which is an eight-module training programme designed by APCICT to help equip policymakers with essential knowledge and skills to embrace ICT as a means for national development. The Academy covers subjects ranging from the link between ICT and development to e-government applications.

This particular workshop focuses on ICT trends, Internet governance, effective teaching methods for the Academy, as well as network and information security and privacy. There will also be sessions dedicated to adapting the Academy programme to the needs of each country by using real world examples specific to that country.

The workshop will also allow returning Academy trainers from throughout the region to gather together and exchange ideas and good practices from their experiences.

“More than just a top-down lecture, these workshops provide an invaluable opportunity for the exchange of experiences and knowledge among participants from different countries, a process that has made alumni of the Academy key players in shaping the curriculum,” said Hyeun-Suk Rhee, Director of APCICT. “Participants who leave this workshop often become real advocates for the Academy in their countries, which has led to a number of formal agreements to deliver regular Academy courses in-country.”

National Academy workshops have already been held in Mongolia, the Philippines, the Cook Islands and Tonga. Later this month, workshops will be organized in Afghanistan and Indonesia for high and mid-level government officials.

“The extent of the reach and impact of the Academy programme today is only possible with the commitment of the Academy alumni working towards a common goal to help nations narrow the digital divide and promote the use of ICT for socio-economic development,” says Ms. Rhee. “Their commitment to using the Academy is an example of how relevant and effective it is.”