IGF 2020 WS #38 Building Economies of Scale for the Underprivileged


Organizer 1: Civil Society, Asia-Pacific Group
Organizer 2: Civil Society, Asia-Pacific Group

Speaker 1: Mevish Vaishnav, Civil Society, Asia-Pacific Group
Speaker 2: Monika Lukasiewicz, Private Sector, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 3: Siya Tayal, Civil Society, Asia-Pacific Group


Break-out Group Discussions - Round Tables - 90 Min

Policy Question(s)

1) Sustainability: What kind of policies are needed to create an ecosystem for pushing digital tools in semi-urban and rural areas 2) Digital literacy: What kind of human resource policies are needed supporting people who are not having any income or less enough to pay for their upskilling needs 3) Social inclusion business models: Role of private players and Civil Society organizations to move this forward and what kind of motivation is needed from the government to support such programs 4) Accessibility: Local skills and how do we connect them to the national and international market

The people at the bottom of the pyramid need handholding and training to push people above the poverty line and we need to create low-value jobs and then upskill them on a regular basis to move them up the value chain. In this session, we will discuss the success stories, pain points, and roadmaps of how to expand and scale to provide opportunities to people at the bottom of the pyramid to enhance their earning capacity through digital inclusion.


GOAL 1: No Poverty
GOAL 2: Zero Hunger
GOAL 3: Good Health and Well-Being
GOAL 4: Quality Education
GOAL 5: Gender Equality
GOAL 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
GOAL 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
GOAL 10: Reduced Inequalities
GOAL 11: Sustainable Cities and Communities
GOAL 16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
GOAL 17: Partnerships for the Goals


Digital Technologies can be a great platform and an equalizer for letting the people move from the lower-income ( underprivileged ) to middle-income group, especially for lower-middle-income countries like India which need to support a billion-plus population. This session will discuss and ideate the existing opportunities and solutions and future ideas of how we can lift the people out of poverty and given them sustained livelihoods

Expected Outcomes

1. How internet for people in semi-urban and rural areas can become active driver for change and economic inclusion 2) What kind of support is needed from the local, regional and national governments to support such mega innovative initiatives 3) How much digital inclusion can lead to boosting the local, regional and national economies 4) Which sectors we must focus on to make this happen 5) How fast can we implement – timelines

We will keep enough time for questions with the audience in the room and also, take online questions through a live audience. We intend to promote our session through professional and social networks across the world 8 weeks before the IGF

Relevance to Internet Governance: The entire model of digital inclusion for semi-urban and rural areas depends on using the internet for development to upskill people and connect them to newer possibilities for economic progress. So, it is important from three standpoints a) It is about rural and semi-urban areas, which are often neglected as the technology is normally associated with metro and big towns 2) It is focused on people who have been left behind in tech adoption due to their economic and social status 3) This will call for close working with CSOs working in such areas, local government and technology platforms. 4) One key focus area is exclusive jobs for women entrepreneurs

Relevance to Theme: It is about touching and impacting the lives of those left behind in the tech area more so, in the far-flung areas and underprivileged class. So it addresses economic, social and gender inequality and inequity. Inclusion is when it does not leave any section, demography, and geography behind and this session is about practical issues, opportunities, and solutions to bridge the divide between the haves and have nots.

Online Participation


Usage of IGF Official Tool. Additional Tools proposed: We will use social media tools and professional networks to promote and air our session as applicable and feasible