Worldwide | DFS
Information and communications technologies (ICT) are expanding at an exponential rate, greatly affecting how the United Nations conducts its peace operations in the evolving digital age. This ICT revolution is occurring at precisely the same time as the United Nations faces renewed pressures on its peacekeeping operations to do more with less.
It is time, now more than ever, for a fresh approach, a new appeal to the philanthropist sector, like-minded groups in civil society and the private sector to help ICT in peacekeeping.
The Information and Communications Technology Division (ICTD) of the Department of Field Support (DFS) is evolving as the natural conduit for transforming such technology on the ground, for harnessing and engaging non-traditional sources of funding, reaching out into new areas such as public-private partnerships, leveraging advances in corporate research and development programmes and establishing technology think-tank dialogues.
“Technology-centred innovation has the potential to be a transformative force in implementing the Organization’s field based mandates. We are working to establish a field focused innovation and technology framework, aimed at facilitating innovation in an integrated manner at all levels and fostering the inclusion of all field mission components,” said Anthony O’Mullane, Director, ICTD.
“Our relevance as technology solutions providers will depend on how successful we will be in the coming years in providing the best tools and solutions to support our field operations,” he added.
It is crucial that the United Nations leverage technology as both a catalyst and as an enabler, to transform itself into an organization that is at the forefront of the technological revolution. Partnerships, dialogues with interested third parties, academic institutions, philanthropists and similar minded groups are crucial to bridging the technology and funding gap between IT capability and resourcing.
Bridging the two parties and such an investment will help solve systemic global problems and ensure that we are successful in our collective efforts to implement our mandates for peace, development and human rights.