Digital: The Bridge to Equitable Prosperity

10 Aug 2023

Digital transformation has been a buzzword for several years now, and the pace of digital adoption has accelerated. As technology blurs the lines between the physical, and digital spheres, there is a rapid change in the way our societies live, work, and interact. Digital has proven to secure economic growth, productivity, employment, equity, and poverty reduction. The same highlights the importance of having a strong and inclusive digital infrastructure set up. 

The advent of new technologies and its utility led adoption will continue to shape our societies and countries for the foreseeable future. Global trade has evolved over decades, with an accelerated focus on services. This change in consumption of digital further highpoints the gap in availability of STEM skills globally, challenges around cybersecurity and ability of small-scale businesses to keep pace with the changing digital ecosystem. While nearly every country is engaged in the process of transforming digitally, not all have may have achieved same level of economic benefits. There are still challenges to be addressed and work to be done, to not only accelerate the penetration of the benefits of digital but to also ensure inclusivity.

The topic of digital transformation has been a part of B20 processes for almost a decade now, offering the unparalleled opportunity of bringing together business leaders spearheading digital transformation across the world. We hope to take this legacy forward, staying at par with emerging trends and needs of the rapidly evolving modern world.

The taskforce aims to make relevant and actionable recommendations to our world leaders, helping regions across the world realize the full potential of a globally connected digital economy, and collectively address the challenges with respect to gaps in internet accessibility, affordability, infrastructure quality, digital security, and digital literacy. We intend to bring together perspectives from across the world to collaboratively solve pressing issues and lay down a comprehensive pathway to overcome roadblocks in the way of true digital transformation.

With an insightful inception meeting on the 24th of January 2023 at Gandhinagar, and numerous constructive suggestions received from members, our taskforce has identified 5 priority areas that we are working to formulate our recommendations on:

Universal connectivity: Bridging the digital divide and reduce inequities.

Digital literacy and addressing skill gap: Digital readiness to improve adoption and meet demand for digitally skilled workforce.

MSME enterprise transformation: Access to sustainable financing and favourable regulatory environment.

Digital Public Infrastructure: Promote Adoption of Digital Public Infrastructure and multi-stakeholder collaboration.

Digital trust: Developing cyber resilience frameworks through harmonization of regulation and increased cyber awareness.

Over the coming months, I look forward to engaging with multiple stakeholders from world over, to achieve the objectives of the B20 Digital Transformation Taskforce.

This article was contributed by Mr Rajesh Gopinathan, Co-Chair, B20 Task Force on Digital Transformation; CEO and Managing Director, TCS Limited.

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