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Information and communications technology (ICT) is often used as an extended synonym for information technology (IT), but is a more specific term that stresses the role of unified communications[1] and the integration of telecommunications (telephone lines and wireless signals), computers as well as necessary enterprise software, middleware, storage, and audio-visual systems, which enable users to access, store, transmit, and manipulate information.[2]

The phrase ICT had been used by academic researchers since the 1980s,[3] but it became popular after it was used in a report to the UK government by Dennis Stevenson in 1997[4] and in the revised National Curriculum for England, Wales and Northern Ireland in 2000. As of September 2013, the term "ICT" in the UK National Curriculum has been replaced by the term "computing".[5]

The term ICT is now also used to refer to the convergence of audio-visual and telephone networks with computer networks through a single cabling or link system. There are large economic incentives (huge cost savings due to elimination of the telephone network) to merge the audio-visual, building management and telephone network with the computer network system using a single unified system of cabling, signal distribution and management.

The term Infocommunications is sometimes used interchangeably with ICT. In fact Infocommunications is the expansion of telecommunications with information processing and content handling functions on a common digital technology base. For a comparison of these and other terms, see.[6]

The ICT Development Index compares the level of ICT use and access across the world.[7]

Global Costs of IT Edit

The total money spent on IT worldwide has been most recently estimated as US $3.5 trillion, and is currently growing at 5% p.a. – doubling every 15 years. IT costs, as a percentage of corporate revenue, have grown 50% since 2002, putting a strain on IT budgets. Today, when looking at companies’ IT budgets, 75% are recurrent costs, used to “keep the lights on” in the IT department, and 25% are cost of new initiatives for technology development.[8]

The average IT budget has the following breakdown:[8] 31% – personnel costs (internal) 29% – software costs (external/purchasing category) 26% – hardware costs (external/purchasing category) 14% – costs of external service providers (external/services)

The WSIS Process and the stocktaking process Edit

On 21 December 2001, the United Nations General Assembly by approving Resolution 56/183 endorsed the holding of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) to discuss on information society opportunities and challenges.[9] According to this resolution, the General Assembly related the Summit to the United Nations Millennium Declaration to implement ICT to facilitate achieving Millennium Development Goals. It also emphasize on the multistakeholder approach to use all stakeholders including civil society and private sector beside the governments. The resolution gave ITU the leading managerial role to organize the event in cooperation with other UN bodies as well as the other international organizations and the host countries and recommended that preparations for the Summit take place through an open-ended intergovernmental Preparatory Committee – or PrepCom – that would define the agenda of the Summit, decide on the modalities of the participation of other stakeholders, and finalize both the draft Declaration of Principles and the draft Plan of Action.[10]

In 2003 at Geneva, delegates from 175 countries took part in the first phase of WSIS where they adopted a Declaration of Principles.[11] This is a road map for achieving an information society accessible to all and based on shared knowledge. A Plan of Action[12] sets out a goal of bringing 50 percent of the world's population online by 2015.

The second phase took place from November 16 through 18, 2005, in Tunis, Tunisia. It resulted in agreement on the Tunis Commitment and the Tunis Agenda for the Information Society, and the creation of the Internet Governance Forum.

The WSIS Stocktaking Process

The WSIS Stocktaking Process is a follow-up to WSIS. Its purpose is to provide a register of activities carried out by governments, international organizations, the business sector, civil society and other entities, in order to highlight the progress made since that landmark event. Following § 120 of TAIS, ITU has been maintaining the WSIS Stocktaking database as a publicly accessible system providing information on ICT-related initiatives and projects with reference to the 11 WSIS Action Lines.

Furthermore, regular reporting on WSIS Stocktaking is the outcome of the Tunis phase of the Summit, which was launched in order to serve as a tool for assisting with the WSIS follow-up. The purpose of the regular reports is to update stakeholders on the various activities related to the 11 Action Lines identified in the Geneva Plan of Action, that was approved during First Phase of the WSIS.

The WSIS+10 High-Level Event will be held from 13 to 17 April 2014 in Sharm el-Sheikh. This event will be an extended version of the WSIS Forum. It is designed to review the progress made in the implementation of the WSIS outcomes under the mandates of participating agencies, and to take stock of achievements in the last 10 years based on reports of WSIS Stakeholders, including those submitted by countries, Action Line Facilitators and other stakeholders. The event will review the WSIS Outcomes (2003 and 2005) related to the WSIS Action Lines with the view of developing proposals on a new vision beyond 2015, potentially including new targets. This process will take into account the decisions of the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly.

Open Consultation Process The Open Consultation Process is an open and inclusive consultation among WSIS Stakeholders (governments, private sector, civil society, international organizations and relevant regional organizations) focused on developing multistakeholder consensus on two draft Outcome Documents, the thematic aspects, and innovations on the format of the Event.

WSIS + 10

The WSIS+10 High-Level Event will be held from 13 to 17 April 2014 in Sharm el-Sheikh. This event will be an extended version of the WSIS Forum. It is designed to review the progress made in the implementation of the WSIS outcomes under the mandates of participating agencies, and to take stock of achievements in the last 10 years based on reports of WSIS Stakeholders, including those submitted by countries, Action Line Facilitators and other stakeholders. The event will review the WSIS Outcomes (2003 and 2005) related to the WSIS Action Lines with the view of developing proposals on a new vision beyond 2015, potentially including new targets. This process will take into account the decisions of the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly.

Open Consultation Process

The Open Consultation Process is an open and inclusive consultation among WSIS Stakeholders (governments, private sector, civil society, international organizations and relevant regional organizations) focused on developing multistakeholder consensus on two draft Outcome Documents, the thematic aspects, and innovations on the format of the Event.

WSIS PROJECT PRIZES 2014 [1]

The WSIS Project Prizes 2014 contest provides a platform to identify and showcase success stories and models that could be easily replicated; empower communities at the local level; give a chance to all stakeholders working on WSIS to participate in the contest, and particularly recognize the efforts of stakeholders for their added value to the society and commitment towards achieving WSIS goals.

Apllications can be submitted for the contest of WSIS Project Prizes 2014 until 1 November 2013.

The contest of WSIS Project Prizes 2014 is organized into four phases to be held from 5 September 2013 until 13 April 2014. On the latter date 18 winners of WSIS Project Prizes will be honored, recognized and presented with an award during WSIS Project Prizes 2014 Ceremony at the WSIS+10 High-Level Event.

See also Edit

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ReferencesEdit

  1. Cloud network architecture and ICT - Modern Network Architecture. Itknowledgeexchange.techtarget.com. URL accessed on 2013-08-18.
  2. Information and Communication Technology from. FOLDOC. URL accessed on 2013-08-18.
  3. William Melody et al., Information and Communication Technologies: Social Sciences Research and Training: A Report by the ESRC Programme on Information and Communication Technologies, ISBN 0-86226-179-1, 1986. Roger Silverstone et al., "Listening to a long conversation: an ethnographic approach to the study of information and communication technologies in the home", Cultural Studies, 5(2), pages 204-227, 1991.
  4. The Independent ICT in Schools Commission, Information and Communications Technology in UK Schools: An Independent Inquiry, 1997. Impact noted in Jim Kelly, What the Web is Doing for Schools, Financial Times, 2000.
  5. Consultation on the order for replacing ICT with computing and the regulations for disapplying aspects of the existing national curriculum.
  6. Sallai, Gy.: Defining Infocommunications and Related Terms. Acta Polytechnica Hungarica, Vol. 9, No. 6, 2012. pp. 5-15. http://www.uni-obuda.hu/journal/Sallai_38.pdf
  7. (2011). Measuring the Information Society. International Telecommunication Union. URL accessed on 25 July 2013.
  8. 8.0 8.1 IT Costs – The Costs, Growth And Financial Risk Of Software Assets. OMT-CO Operations Management Technology Consulting GmbH. URL accessed on 26 June 2011.
  9. includeonly>"Basic information : about wsis", International Telecommunication Union, 17 January 2006. Retrieved on 26 May 2012.
  10. includeonly>"United Nations General Assembly Resolution 56/183", International Telecommunication Union, 31 January 2002. Retrieved on 26 May 2012.
  11. WSIS Declaration of Principles. Itu.int. URL accessed on 2012-03-28.
  12. WSIS Plan of Action. Itu.int. URL accessed on 2012-03-28.

Further readingEdit


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