Today we’re pleased to announce The Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Technology as a new member to the Digital Public Goods Alliance. Being a member of the DPGA represents an organisation’s commitment to advancing a common vision, transparently monitoring and sharing activities, and working collaboratively to advance digital public goods. The UN Envoy on Technology has, and continues to, support the digital public goods ecosystem through their innovation and leadership.
The Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Technology has been a steward of digital public goods since before the inception of the DPGA. The 2019 report The Age of Digital Interdependence focused on fostering greater digital cooperation and advancing digital public goods. This included recommendation 1B which called for, “a broad, multi-stakeholder alliance, involving the UN, create a platform for sharing digital public goods, engaging talent and pooling data sets, in a manner that respects privacy, in areas related to attaining the SDGs.” The Digital Public Goods Alliance is the answer to that call.
The DPGA is also guided by the UN Secretary-General’s Roadmap for Digital Cooperation, which created a shared definition of a digital public good which we use today as the foundation of the DPG Standard and Registry. That definition is “open source software, open data, open AI models, open standards and open content that adhere to privacy and other applicable international and domestic laws, standards and best practices, and do no harm.”
The Office of the Secretary-General’s Envoy on Technology coordinates the implementation of these canonical documents and facilitates collaboration between interested parties including member states, the technology industry, private companies, civil society, other stakeholders, and us. They have been particularly instrumental in facilitating collaboration between the DPGA and other like minded initiatives, promoting digital public goods to relevant parties (including member states), and supporting open source capacity building within the UN System (for example, through this event co-hosted just last week).
The UN Tech Envoy strives to connect, respect, and protect people in the digital age – a central tenet of the Roadmap for Digital Cooperation – and provides a vision and steerage for a digitally interdependent world. We’re thrilled to officially welcome them as a member of the DPGA, and look forward to their continued support and leadership.
Read about the UN Tech Envoy’s stewardship of digital public goods and more here.
Learn about DPGA members and their actions in supporting digital public goods here.