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UNESCO-Pearson Initiative: Digital Inclusion Landscape Review

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Highlights from the Digital Inclusion Landscape Review, presented at Online Educa Berlin, 8 December 2017

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UNESCO-Pearson Initiative: Digital Inclusion Landscape Review

  1. 1. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR Digital Inclusion Landscape Review Presented at OEB, 8 Dec 2017 UNESCO-Pearson Initiative for Literacy
  2. 2. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 2 About The UNESCO-Pearson Initiative for Literacy Improved Livelihoods in a Digital World is a partnership between UNESCO and Pearson to examine and highlight how inclusive digital solutions can help people with low skills and/or low literacy levels use technology in a way that supports skills development and, ultimately, improves livelihoods. The partnership is a key programme of the global Project Literacy campaign, founded and convened by Pearson that aims to end illiteracy by 2030 through partnerships and action.
  3. 3. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 3 Why? • 750m “illiterate” youth and adults globally • Rise in digitisation - around 50% of world will be online in 2017 • Sustainable Development Goal 4: Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all • Target 4.6: By 2030, ensure that all youth and a substantial proportion of adults, both men and women, achieve literacy and numeracy • UNESCO has a strong focus on literacy – and in 2017 on literacy in a digital world – see the International Literacy Prize winners
  4. 4. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 4 Scope of landscape review Five focus areas: health, agriculture, government services, displaced populations and green and environmental services. 1. What does the literature reveal about the barriers to digital inclusion and the broad design approaches to better include users who are low-skilled and low- literate? 1. From the reviewed projects, in what ways have solutions been specifically designed, developed, used and implemented? 2. From the reviewed projects, what emergent themes, barriers and opportunities can be distilled?
  5. 5. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 5 Methods and data sources • From 50 projects, 32 selected for review. • Categorised and mapped projects by: Sector, Country, Function, Delivery channel(s), Target users, Affordances for low-skilled and/or low-literate users, Intended impact, and digital competences.
  6. 6. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 6 Known barriers to digital inclusion Source literature Proposed barriers Lack of infrastructure Low income and affordability Limited users capability Lack of incentives Connecting the Next Four Billion (USAID, 2017) X X X X Connecting Refugees (UNHCR, 2016) X X X Next Billion (IGF, 2015) X X X (Usability) Offline and Falling Behind (McKinsey & Company, 2014) X X X X Digital Inclusion (GSMA, 2014) X X X X Digital Enablement (Huawei, 2015) X (Availability) X X (Ability) X (Appetite) State of Connectivity 2015 (, 2016) X (Availability, or proximity of necessary Infrastructure, including mobile access, networks, adjacent infrastructure, and access innovation) X (Affordability, including costs of devices and data packages relative to income) X (Readiness, which includes skills, awareness, and cultural and social acceptance) X (Split between: Readiness and Relevance (i.e., is useful, relatable, and accessible content available to the user)) Internet for All (World Economic Forum, 2016) X (Under Skills, awareness, and cultural acceptance) X (Split between: Skills, awareness, and cultural acceptance and Local adoption and use) Connecting the World (PwC, 2016) X (Availability) X X (Readiness, which includes skills, awareness, and cultural and social acceptance) X (Split between: Readiness and Relevance) ICT & SDGs (Ericsson & Columbia University, 2016) X X X (Under Usage, or demand simulation including local content and ICT skills) X (Under Usage, or demand simulation including local content and ICT skills) Adapted from Schmida et al., 2017.
  7. 7. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 7 Key findings: Design process • Co-designed solutions promote local adoption – “Design with the user” Principles for Digital Development. – Examples: Khushi Baby and Digital Green training videos • Content localization lowers literacy-related barriers – Content must be relevant and also immediately applicable to their surroundings. – Content must be understandable, e.g. not ‘meningitis immunization’ or ‘schistosomiasis’ . – Example: All projects except for one RFI necklace of Khushi Baby
  8. 8. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 8 Key findings: The digital solution 15 9 10 Digital Solution Function Types (n = number of case studies reviewed in each function) Information service delivery Training and skills enhancement Other 10 21 12 Delivery Channels (n = number of projects reviewed that included the delivery channel) Text/SMS App Voice/Audio
  9. 9. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 9 Key findings: The digital solution • A media mix promotes use by people with different competences and proficiency levels – When solutions offer a mix of media, such as text and audio, or text accompanied by bold and relevant graphics, they are inclusive to a wider range of users. – Examples: iCow and 3-2-1 Service • Simple user interfaces create less intimidating user experiences – Examples included offering audio-assisted navigation or context-appropriate graphics in the mother tongue, and in some cases also in second languages. – Examples: Talking Book Programme, Crop Specific Mobile Apps and Nano Ganesh Interface of Talking Book device Interface of Crop Specific Mobile Apps
  10. 10. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 10 Key findings: User competences DigComp 2.1: The Digital Competence Framework for Citizens • Competence areas: – Information and data literacy (35 instances) – Communication and collaboration (10 instances) – Digital content creation (4 instances) – Safety (2 instances) – Problem solving (2 instances) • Proficiency levels: – Foundation 1 (1 instance) / Foundation 2 (23 instances) – Intermediate 3 (28 instances) / Intermediate 4 – Advanced 5 (1 instance) / Advanced 6 – Highly specialised 7 / Highly specialised 8
  11. 11. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 11 Key findings: User competences • Experiences mirrored across contexts, e.g. The Talking Book Programme • Need for ongoing support – Users with low levels of skills and literacy, more than other users, need support when learning to use digital solutions. Digital and face-to-face. – Examples: MIRA Channel Competence area Competency Proficiency level Information and data literacy Browsing, searching and filtering data, information and digital content Foundation 2 Communication and collaboration Sharing through digital technologies Intermediate 3 Digital content creation Developing digital content Intermediate 3
  12. 12. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 12 Key findings: Implementation environment • Including women and rural users – The digital solutions reviewed often considered the specific needs of women, particularly in the health sector where many initiatives seek to improve maternal health. Further, the agriculture and green and environmental practices sectors often target rural users. – Examples: MIRA Worker Toolkit and Text4Baby • Lack of awareness remains a challenge – Limited awareness of digital solutions can severely curb uptake among the intended audience, and low visibility is an ongoing challenge for the projects. Community engagement, while time-consuming and resource-intensive, is an excellent way to raise awareness. – Example: Mobile Vaani • Cost of access can be prohibitive – A well-known barrier to the usage of digital solutions is the high costs of access. This cost can increase when audio is used as a delivery channel and users need to make voice calls to access information, or when large video files need to be downloaded. While key projects in this review subsidized or bypassed such costs for end users, this was not seen in every instance. – Examples: Digital Green and Farmer Training App Interface of MIRA Channel Interface of Mobile Vaani
  13. 13. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 13 Opportunities • Experiment with the possibilities offered through new technologies. – Especially voice-based solutions, chatbots, AI • Coordinate digital solution development and implementation efforts. • Establish government support to raise awareness. • Stimulate both the supply and demand sides of service delivery for populations with low levels of skills and literacy. – Includes a range of stakeholders – Incentives/drivers/barriers for providers of digital solutions (supply side): • M-Agrit Toolkit (GSMA), Airtel Green SIM – Incentives/drivers/barriers for users of digital solutions (demand side): • Stimulating cultural acceptance, e.g. Khushi Baby • See digital solutions as key elements in creating a more literate environment: – Supply side: digital usage provides opportunities for developing and practicing literacy skills – Demand side: by offering access to essential services through digital platforms, the incentive to learn the needed skills is created.
  14. 14. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 14 In summary • Appropriately designed solutions provide an entry point into digital activities. • There is a thread between peoples’ needs; digital solutions that support the meeting of those needs; skills and literacy development through usage; and livelihoods improvement. • Need to study the link between usage and literacy development. • Assumption: Ideally, with time and usage, as the users develop their skills they will feel more comfortable to move along the spectrum to using more technically and cognitively demanding solution  virtuous circle.
  15. 15. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 15 Case studies
  16. 16. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 16 Initial takeaways from case studies • Skills benchmarking is important • Basic usage, rich data • Let the tech help with quality control for inclusion of low-skilled and low- literate users • Content (testing) is king • Low-literate users can also be content creators • Leverage “infomediaries” and build local capacity
  17. 17. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 17 Next steps • Development of Guidelines for Digital Inclusion for Low-skilled and Low-literate People • Public draft for input: February 2018 • Workshop at Mobile Learning Week: 26-30 March 2018 • Released September 2018 We need you • Give input into guidelines • Implement the guidelines • Give us feedback
  18. 18. UNESCO EDUCATION SECTOR 18 Thank you Steven Vosloo, Senior Project Officer Project website: @UNESCO @pearson @rewritinglives