the role of ict in the achievement of the 17 development Essay


REG. NO : X75/3617/2018







On 25th September 2015, the General Assembly adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) to replace the Millennium Development Goals (MDG’s). The goals have great ambitions, aiming at addressing the global challenges we face such as ending poverty, extreme hunger, ensure quality education for all, improve health care, end gender inequality, protect, restore, and promote sustainable use of resources in the planet.

The Sustainable Development Goals are key to achieve better living standards, social and economic development for a more sustainable future for all. For the goals to be reached, everyone needs to do their part: governments, the private sector, the civil society and citizens.


Approximately 10% of the world population still live in abject poverty and really struggle to fulfil their basic needs like food, health, education and access to water and sanitation.

In sub-Saharan Africa, the majority of people live on less than $1.90 a day. Poverty is fueled by unemployment, social exclusion and high vulnerability of certain populations to disasters, diseases and other phenomena which prevent them from being productive. The growing inequality is an obstacle to economic growth and undermines social cohesion, increasing political and social tensions which may eventually accelerate instability and conflicts.

ICT can be used in promoting a sustainable resource management system to secure last-mile food delivery, medicine and disaster relief to poverty-stricken areas. ICT can enable agricultural extensions and business development services to provide timely information and solutions to problems affecting the populations in their endeavors. Inclusive Digital financial services can be implemented in order to bank the unbanked population and provide secure investments and savings.

ICT can be used in mapping the areas, monitor their needs and support development initiatives and improve opportunities and facilities for the poor. This include through promoting inclusive innovation and better education or jobs for the poor via online work, sales, marketing and education opportunities. Education is one of the most powerful instruments and responsive to the poor who are often left uninformed.

In addition, the ICT manufacturing sector can provide some direct employment for the poor.

For the poor, getting access to even the most common type of government information or documentation can be a nightmare requiring multiple visits, waste of time and bribes. ICT can be used to get rid of such malpractices, assist in transforming public services.


To find solution to hunger, we require a renewable-low energy input and high output systems that are resilient to the effects of severe weather, pests, grid failure and nuclear fallout. The systems will result in local food safety and security, water supply improvement and conservation, zero toxic waste output and high quality-nutritious fresh fruits and vegetables. ICT proposes to provide education on symbiotic relationships, research in agriculture and on the importance of biodiversity and ecology through various online platforms.

To fight poverty and hunger, ICT ‘location-based service’ feature assists even the small-scale farmers by making it easy to inform them about weather patterns, markets, pests, fertilizers and insecticides in a much more effective manner, because the information can be area-specific; that is, targeted at farmers of a particular area. The farmers’ feedback on various issues, access to information on market prices or on extension services can be remotely solicited over mobile devices, with the aim of improving services.

The performance of agricultural extension workers can be greatly improved with digital information services due to availability of databases citing the challenges experienced in various areas.


Improving the health of individuals and communities, strengthening health systems, disease detection and prevention are crucial to development.

With health information on web and various online platforms, ICT enables the health workers to conduct research on various ailments, past medical analysis, make projections about disease outbreaks, conduct various modern diagnostic and therapeutic procedures within a short period of time in order to reduce mortality and maternal deaths. Among the public, ICT equips them with education and awareness about the communicable diseases, health status and prevention measures. This gives freedom to the people to choose the best hospitals and doctors to approach for treatment hence a healthy population.

The fundamental use of ICT devices in health centres is for electronic and mass storage of patients’ medical data. This helps in easy data retrieval. Through ICT, the data can be transferred to the patient or to the doctors for consultation. The patient can have medical records in pocket which can be used anywhere at anytime.

ICT enables remote consultation, diagnosis and treatment through telemedicine where a patient connects online with a medical specialist. The use of mobile phones enables patients to receive timely notifications and reminders to take medication through web messaging. The use of a global satellite technology is helping to track outbreaks of epidemics and ensure that effective prevention and treatment methods can reach people in time.


ICT plays a major role in order to achieve quality education and lifelong learning possibilities. ICT connects teachers and students to audio-video learning resources and information relevant to their curriculum anywhere at any time. Classrooms equipped with a giant LCD touchscreen screen which allows a greater amount of interactivity and can be connected to multiple students’ devices.

Online web platforms and libraries such as Massive Open Online Courses such as Coursera, Udacity, edX, iVersity and Khan Academy which are available for free online provide free tutorials for academic trainings. Furthermore, online social networks such as YouTube are widely used to spread knowledge via the internet in order to facilitate lifelong learning. Another success story in providing information and education to everybody is the online encyclopedia Wikipedia which is a free-of-cost encyclopedia developed by using the knowledge of the community. Further, research social networks, such as Research Gate, establish the exchange between researchers and scholars all over the world. Open Source products such as Linux, LibreO?ce and Eclipse pose alternatives to expensive software suites and thereby minimize inequalities in education.


Since time immemorial women have been facing societal discrimination from their male counterparts and often viewed as inferior. SDG 5 aims to achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls and aims at enhanced use of enabling technology in particular to promote the empowerment of women.

ICT reduces gender inequality by increasing women’s access basic healthcare information, nutrition, education, training, employment, financial inclusion, basic information about their rights and even political participation. In times of crisis, ICT also provides access to consolation and assistance. ICT can also be leveraged for personal security.

The Internet is a powerful tool in creating unexpected numerous opportunities for female entrepreneurs as beginners to enter global markets. ICT provides opportunities in boosting their businesses on various competitions regardless of their location and business size.


Water is important especially for a good health. The ICTs’ Meter Reading Systems (MRS) are particularly important for smart water management; facilitating the measurement and monitoring of water supplies as well as necessary interventions for its usage on various regions. Financial Management System facilitates quick and efficient making of payments on water bills and enabling practitioners at the local level to ensure equitable and sustainable extension of water, sanitationn and hygiene services. ICTs improve the quality of service by using tracking systems which are able to trace water leakages at various points of the connecting pipes.


Energy run almost every sector in day to day development operations. ICT ensures affordable and clean energy by using low-power renewable energy solutions. ICTs are being transformed and developed to be more environmentally sound and less carbon-intensive.

ICT has enabled energy saving strategy by introducing energy automation and monitoring systems which ration energy consumption. These green technologies and processes have the potential to play a significant role in significantly reducing global greenhouse gas emissions. They include smart grids, smart buildings, smart logistics and industrial processes, smart metering, eco-office buildings and centralized sleep mode for computers congestion charging.


ICT skills have already become a prerequisite for almost all forms of employment and therefore, capacity-building must be prioritized in national youth employment and entrepreneurship strategies in all countries. It is not simply that most jobs and businesses now require ICT skills, but also that ICTs themselves are transforming the way that business is being done everywhere and creating new employment opportunities. ICT improves efficiency, enables large scale production, reduces risks and informs decision making.

For economic growth and decent work, ICT skills are so important that without digital literacy one cannot even find job listings and make applications. At the same time, new job opportunities are coming up in social media management, gaming, mobile apps, offshore services, crowdsourcing and micro work such as data entry, coding and tagging. The development of modern offices with various technological equipment also motivates the working environment and conditions.


The growth of industries and development of infrastructure results to the improvement of the living standards of people. Some contributions of ICT are open access to academic research, transparency to make informed decisions and platforms for online collaboration for co-creation, learning and work.

ICTs can be used for building resilient infrastructure and fostering innovation. Infrastructure is controlled, managed and optimized by ICT; For example, reliable power networks, water supplies, safe transportation system controlled by use of CCTVs and resilient telecommunication networks. ICTs contribute to making cities smarter and more sustainable to improve quality of life, with respect to economic, social, environmental as well as cultural aspects. Industrialization and the increase in productivity, highly depends on the effective use of ICTs. Nowhere else has innovation been more clearly fostered than in emerging ICTs.


ICT bridges the digital divide between urban and rural areas, between genders and between development markers like health and education. ICT’s has the potential to help reduce inequality both within and between countries in vulnerable populations by enabling access to information and knowledge to disadvantaged segments of society; including those living with disabilities, as well as women and girls.

ICT also helps in leveraging the effects on earning opportunities between people in the society, moderating funds between educational and health services, on good governance and on promoting democracy.


A smart sustainable city is an innovative city that uses information and communication technologies to improve quality of life, efficiency of urban operation and services, and competitiveness, while ensuring that it meets the needs of present and future generations with respect to economic, social and environmental aspects.

ICTs can reduce administration costs and improve access to key areas such as healthcare, education, banking and provide a platform for public inclusion. They can improve the dialogue between city managers and citizens; where they can express their opinions.

Transformative mobility, broadband and cloud solutions may provide opportunities to construct smart buildings, manage electric cars which reduce congestion and foster faster, greener and cheaper transportation, support e-government services such as teleworking, distributed health services and online payment solutions which are more efficient and transparent. Real-time data monitoring can provide city managers with appropriate and up-to-date intelligence enabling them to make more informed decisions on the management of city services such as roads, electricity, water management and disaster preparedness.

Smart metering systems and smart distribution systems can support the sustainable usage of electric power and water.


ICT also provides mobile banking and micro-credits to benefit millions who were previously excluded. Ownership and control over property is made easier and assured through computerized land records.

It can help to increase access to market information or lower transaction costs of poor farmers and traders who have to transport their goods and services to market. Workers can get information on available jobs and minimum wages on the internet. ICT technologies can be used to increase efficiency, competitiveness and market access for developing country firms.

Cloud computing, smart grids, smart metering and reduced energy consumption of ICTs all have a positive impact on reducing our consumption. However, ICTs themselves require energy consumption. Therefore, effective policies are needed to ensure the negative impacts of ICTs, such as e-waste, are minimized.


The climate change has impacted into disastrous natural hazards such as floods, cyclones with storm surges, tornadoes, river-bank erosion, drought and earthquakes which lead to loss of both lives and property.

ICT provide reliable and rapid communication, observation and positioning tools, especially when crucial on-the-ground infrastructure damaged. Risk assessment, disaster mitigation and risk reduction also benefit greatly from ICT based data.

ICT can provide required information to all stakeholders, and connect people to ICT based timely warnings systems to allow them to take actions that save lives and reduce damage, and quick mobilization of volunteers and institutions for recovery measures. Satellite radio can play a massive role during early warning and disaster recovery phases. It is a digital radio that receives signal broadcast from a communications satellite. With this technology it is possible to send early warning messages to millions of subscribers within a few seconds.

Efficient coordinating services using ICT based technologies may be useful for evaluating disaster and risk reduction activities, policies and long-term sustainable planning.ICTs can be used intensively in weather forecasting, climate monitoring and predicting, hazard mapping, detecting and mitigating the effects of natural disasters through weather satellites, remote sensing and telecommunication technologies.

Computer based models are now widely used globally to predict long term climatic changes that can affect the climatic pattern relevant from the country perspective. ICT tools like aerial photography and satellite imagery can be used to make quick post disaster assessments of the impact of any disaster to help plan the recovery effort and improve the overall efficiency of relief and recovery operations.


ICT assist in marine conservation and sustainability, especially in the world’s oceans through satellite monitoring. Internet and satellite maps deliver timely and accurate data on a global basis which can be used to trace and track migration patterns of endangered sea animals, monitor global fish-stocks, oxygen levels, algal blooms, pollution, temperature and currents. Big data can be used to analyse biodiversity, pollution, weather and ecosystem evolution to help plan mitigation and adaptation strategies.


ICTs can play a significant role in the conservation and sustainable use of terrestrial ecosystems and the prevention of the loss of biodiversity through improved monitoring and reporting. Satellite-based monitoring delivers timely and accurate data on a global basis, while local sensors can deliver on the spot updates in real-time. Big data can be used to analyse short- and long-term trends in terms of biodiversity, pollution, weather patterns and ecosystem evolution, and to plan mitigation activities for land restoration.


ICT’s can play an important role in crisis management, humanitarian aid and peacebuilding. They have proved to be a powerful aid in areas such as electoral monitoring. The growing use of open data by governments increases transparency, empowers citizens, and helps to drive economic growth. ICTs are also essential in terms of record-keeping and tracking government data and local demographics. When natural or man-made disasters occur, ICTs are crucial in obtaining, communicating and transmitting accurate and timely crisis information, allowing appropriate responses to be made. The vast amount of data that is already openly accessible online can be used in future for data analysis and data mining.


ICT increases transparency and empowers citizens through crowdsourcing, record-keeping and tracking government data and local demographics.The e-democracy involves an electronic interaction between the Government and its citizens.It provides citizens with access to information and knowledge about the political process, services and choices available and facilitates transformation of passive information access to active citizens.It involves participation by informing, representing, encouraging to vote, consulting and involving the citizens. ICT can have a major role in creating a more well-informed and active citizenship while diminishing closed and undemocratic regimes.


Although the use of ICT will roll out with its own limitations such high cost of acquiring and installing the equipment, and replacement of human labour by machines therefore promoting unemployment; it is evident from the above discussion that there is no other domain today that has a such a strong potential towards the development of countries and societies than Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs), especially in driving today’s innovation, e?ciency and e?ectiveness across all sectors. To achieve the SDGs, ICT needs to be combined with innovative policies, services and solutions in order to deliver transformation at unprecedented speed and scale.


Still stressed from student homework?
Get quality assistance from academic writers!