IFIP World IT Forum Wraps Up with Call for Governments of Developing Nations
to Manage the Impacts of Digital Disruption
Friday 16 September 2016 – The IFIP World IT Forum (WITFOR) 2016 concluded in San Jose, Costa Rica this week with calls for developing nations to take decisive action to prevent mass job losses as a result of digital disruption.
Final keynote speaker, Dr Chrisanthi Avgerou, raised concerns about the potential impacts on jobs, saying that large parts of the population in developing countries are unable to take advantage of digital technologies because of limited access or a lack of skills, and could get left behind.
She also highlighted the impacts of digital development in advanced post-industrial countries as posing serious challenges for the developing world.
Dr Avgerou suggested two ways that developing nations could avoid mass unemployment:
- International regulations to delay or address the labour replacement effect, ensuring that appropriate measures are in place to protect jobs; and
- Strengthen areas of job and income creation.
She also highlighted three areas where governments should develop policies designed to boost economic growth and development:
- A strong focus on education, particularly in the area of exercising critical judgment;
- Regulation (and deregulation) to safeguard against the risks relating to privacy and cybersecurity; and
- International negotiations to alleviate the problems of jobless growth.
IFIP WITFOR 2016 attracted nearly 200 delegates and speakers from across Latin America and around the globe, focused on how technologies can be applied to further the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and enhance economic growth in the developing world.
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IFIP, the International Federation for Information Processing, is the global professional federation of societies and associations for people working in Information and Communications Technologies and Sciences. Established under the auspices of UNESCO in 1960 and recognised by the United Nations, IFIP represents ICT professional associations from more than 50 countries and regions with a total membership of over half a million. It also brings together more than 3,500 scientists from industry and academia, organising them into over 100 Working Groups and 13 Technical Committees to conduct research, develop standards and promote information sharing. Based in Austria, IFIP organises and supports over 100 conferences each year, fostering the distribution of research and knowledge to academics and industry practitioners alike.