Digital Inclusion Week 2023 – Building Connected Communities

Join us as we recognize Digital Inclusion Week, an opportunity to learn more about the issue of the digital divide and take action!

Recently, I asked my mom what comes to mind when she hears the term “digital inclusion?” Her response: “What is digital inclusion?” This is a frequent reaction when I talk to family or friends. When immersed in a digital world, it’s easy to forget that around one-third of people lack the technology and skills to participate in today’s society.

As more of our lives move online and technology advances at unprecedented rates, those living with limited access to the internet, devices and digital skills are increasingly disconnected from jobs, education, healthcare and other basic needs.

We saw the extreme impacts of this during the pandemic. And we’re now seeing similar impacts with Generative AI on the horizon. These issues continue to affect particularly low-income countries and communities.

As a global company at the center of digital transformation, Dell Technologies has an important role to play. It’s why we’ve made a commitment to impact the lives of one billion people through digital inclusion by 2030. To achieve this ambitious goal, we’re leaning on trusted partners and meeting communities where they are in their digital education journey.

Digital Inclusion Week as a Catalyst for Change

Moments like Digital Inclusion Week (Oct. 2-6), provide the opportunity to drive awareness of this issue, while celebrating the collective efforts, cooperation and collaboration required to make progress.

This is why we’re partners with the National Digital Inclusion Alliance (NDIA), which supports hundreds of organizations acting in their communities during this observance and throughout the year, across the country.

With Dell’s support, NDIA is also creating a Digital Inclusion Start-Up Manual, providing guidance on increasing access to technology in underrepresented communities. This includes digital skills training, affordable home broadband, affordable devices and tech support.

We recognize having high-speed, low-cost internet is often a challenge. It’s why we’ve joined the national campaign, Online for All, to advocate for internet access, affordability and equity for students, families and Americans.

There are several events happening across the country this week. Here are a few Dell is proud to support.

Austin, Texas

  • Connect to Tech. Hosted by Dell, Goodwill of Central Texas and Austin Free-Net, this event connects individuals with lower-level digital skills with barriers to employment, to learn from Dell professionals and experience the Alienware Mobile Gaming Lounge with Team Liquid.
  • Tech for All Festival. Hosted by Austin Free-Net, this event provides easy access to technology, community resources and supports community building in East Austin celebrating digital inclusion.

Nashville, Tennessee

  • Nashville Analytics Summit. Hosted by the Greater Nashville Technology Council, as sponsors, our panel will highlight the cruciality of data in addressing complex social issues.

Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

  • Building Connections: Strengthening Our Digital Equity Community Conference. Hosted by Temple University, as sponsors of the Technology Learning Collaborative’s annual conference, we’re moderating a panel to discuss digital equity capacity through partnerships.

Detroit, Michigan

  • Detroit Digital Inclusion Week. Hosted by Connect 313, as sponsors, we’re participating in a discussion on modeling healthy digital habits for Detroit youth, families and seniors.

Digital Inclusion Week Goes Global

While Digital Inclusion Week is primarily a U.S. observance, we’re taking this as an opportunity to also educate our communities globally. We’ve hosted an exclusive conversation with Toronto Raptor, NBA champion and founder of the PS43 Foundation, Pascal Siakam, and curated giving and volunteering opportunities for team members.

From a collaboration perspective, we’ve been partnering with UNICEF since 2021 in support of Giga, a UNICEF-ITU initiative helping connect every school in the world to the internet by 2030 and every young person to information, opportunity and choice.

Dell’s donation of high-performance computing (HPC) supports Giga’s school mapping work, helping accelerate the development of AI models for detecting schools from high-resolution satellite imagery. To date, Giga has supported internet connectivity for over 2.2 million students and 5,700 schools. In the next 18 months, Giga is expanding its footprint exponentially – aiming to help governments connect 25,000+ schools to the internet and working in 40 countries across the globe by the end of 2024.

In addition, Dell is running a back-to-school campaign where we will donate to UNICEF for each eligible purchase. We will pool the funds to deliver the largest impact for children and their connectivity.

Get Involved

There has never been a more important time to work together on this issue. We hope you will join us and use Digital Inclusion Week as an opportunity to educate yourself and others and lend your expertise and time to support organizations in your community working to bridge the digital divide. Check out all the ways Dell is promoting digital equity across the globe.

UNICEF does not endorse any company, brand, product or service.

About the Author: Carly Tatum

Carly Tatum is the Senior Director of ESG Impact and Engagement at Dell Technologies. Her team is responsible for taking action on Dell’s ESG priorities, applying the company’s full capabilities for the greatest impact for society. As part of that she oversees Dell’s philanthropic efforts, leads Dell’s ESG signature programs, strategic partnerships, community engagement and employee engagement. Prior to this role, she spent three years leading Public Affairs and Corporate PR and six years leading Social Impact Communications and Corporate Influencer Relations for the company. She has led a purpose-driven career with highlights including launching the company’s corporate activism strategy, shaping the company’s ESG 2030 goals, and building advocacy and engagement campaigns like the Circular Gold jewelry collection and NextWave plastic consortium to both build Dell’s reputation as an ethical company and community leader and drive real action in support of the planet.