To date, M4D has impacted the lives of over 58 million people. This work has primarily taken place in countries considered to be ‘developing’, however, we have recently widened our scope to look at using digital technology addressing inequality in all global contexts. We are proud to have recently launched the Digital Equity initiative, with a mission to accelerate digital equity for the underserved in high GDP markets.
We conducted landscaping research into digital tools targeted at underserved populations in the United States, United Kingdom, Spain, France, and Germany. In particular, the research focused on: the elderly; low-income populations; persons with disabilities; abuse victims; persons not in education, employment or training; substance abusers; homeless persons and refugees. This research highlighted three important themes:
- The mobile industry is keen to enable greater digital equity and inclusion, reaching the underserved and marginalized populations.
- Driving digital inclusion and socio-economic development for these groups will require collaboration between the private sector, public sector, and civil society organizations.
- The GSMA is uniquely positioned to play an active role in the digital inclusion ecosystem, given the unique strengths of our members and our experience with multi-stakeholder impact-driven projects. We are motivated to work on these new challenges, as addressing the needs of underserved groups through mobile technology is both an opportunity and a responsibility.
Today we are excited to announce the initiative’s Engagement Partner Program, launching with an initial focus on the United States. Through this effort, we are seeking to support and partner with two organizations utilizing mobile and digital tools to enhance socio-economic conditions for underserved and marginalized users. The GSMA is investing in-kind resources in each of these two partnerships, including:
- Up to $40,000 in design for impact research consultancy;
- Dedicated product management support;
- World-class industry showcasing of the partner organizations’ work; and
- Partnership matchmaking.
The two selected partner organizations can expect to benefit from in-depth user research with target beneficiaries generating insights into user adoption rates, behavior change, and impact, a customized theory of change clearly articulating how the service delivers impact, exposure at the GSMA’s global industry events, blogs, and publications.
We are open to partnering with a wide range of organizations including for-profit, not-for-profit, civil society, charity, government, and education. The organizations we partner with must have a live, existing service which is engaging end users via mobile and digital channels with example use cases, and the service must already be generating and able to demonstrate some level of impact.
This is a wonderful opportunity to collaborate and drive impact in an increasingly important space, and we are excited to dive in and help our partners create positive impact. If you are interested in pursuing this partnership opportunity, please complete our readiness survey. If you have any questions or ideas you’d like to discuss with our team, please contact us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. We are looking forward to hearing from you!