Wednesday, October 6, 2010

GSMA Launches mWomen Programme

The GSMA has launched an "mWomen Programme" aimed at bringing the resources of the global mobile industry and the international development community together to bring mobile devices to more than 150 million women in developing markets within three years. The initiative was formally launched by Rob Conway, CEO of the GSMA, with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, and Cherie Blair, at an event in Washington, D.C..

The vision of the programme is that by increasing access to mobile connectivity and services, women living on less than US$2 per day will achieve a greater sense of security, independence, economic opportunity and connection with the world outside their homes. Key issues to be addressed by the initiative include total cost of ownership, technical literacy, and cultural barriers to adoption.

The GSMA mWomen Programme is aligned with the UN Millennium Development Goals, particularly MDG 3 on Gender Equity. It has already secure commitments from the following 20 leading global mobile companies: AT&T, Banglalink, Bharti Airtel, Cell C, Dialog, Digicel, IDEA Cellular, Maxis, Mobitel, Mobilink, MTN, France Telecom/Orange, Orascom, Roshan, Safaricom, SMART, Telenor, Telefonica, Uninor and Vodafone. Nokia has also committed to the programme by piloting women's information initiatives under its Ovi Life Tools service, focusing specifically on healthcare and education