Under the right conditions, digital technologies can contribute to achieving the targets set out in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) by 2030 by fostering economic growth, improving governance, and delivering better outcomes in education and health.
Learning financial skills through involvement in an urban farming cooperative has improved the lives of women in Amman, Jordan. The article Developing Value Chains in Amman, Jordan describes how the cooperative has led to women gaining valuable skills through increased participation in business and farming activities.
Poor communities rarely benefit from global emissions trading schemes, because of the high transaction costs of participation. However, the registration of small community-scale projects to the carbon market through the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) might be a way for low-income communities to profit from their efforts to reduce emissions.
Despite reforms, labour markets in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) have been unable to absorb the growing number of job seekers. Women and educated youth are particularly vulnerable to high unemployment. However, data on entrepreneurship and the private enterprise sector in the region have been virtually non-existent.
Access to water for poor residents in Jakarta, Indonesia, is limited. Among the challenges they face are the high prices demanded by water service providers, poor water quality, and limited access to water infrastructure. With support from IDRC, the global humanitarian agency Mercy Corps worked with residents, local government, researchers, NGOs, and the private sector to tackle these challenges.
Researchers compared water quality available in two informal settlements in Lebanon and Jordan. Tests were conducted to compare water supplied by the municipality and bottled water. The results: tests showed that their quality is similar, although the brand of the bottled water and how it is stored affected its quality.
Health systems in countries across Asia struggle to provide access to health services, especially to vulnerable populations. Information and communication technologies like mobile phones are being used to address health challenges. This networked approach to health, or eHealth, can increase access to services and information. But can it fill critical gaps in health service provision?
Agricultural production is rapidly expanding in Southeast Asia. While this can lead to improved food security, nutrition, and income in the region, it also increases the risk of disease, exposure to chemicals, and the loss of biodiversity. The IDRC-supported Ecohealth Field Building Initiative (FBLI) supports research in the region that aims to improve understanding of the effects of agricultural change on ecosystems and human health, and provide sustainable solutions.