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DPI & AI for #ZeroDigitalDivide

3 March, 2024

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High-Level Conference: DPI & AI for #ZeroDigitalDivide

30-31 October 2023

In a world that is rapidly transforming, where the transformative power of Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) has the potential to reshape the future, there is a need to pledge our dedication to digital inclusivity, universal access to technology, and the ethical application of AI. We must recognize the importance of leaving no one behind in the digital age, bridging the digital divide across borders, demographics, and economic disparities.

The two-day High-Level Conference: DPI & AI for #ZeroDigitalDivide delved into the profound impact of Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) across various sectors. The sessions provided a comprehensive overview of Bangladesh’s ambitious initiatives, showcasing its commitment to technological advancements, economic growth, and societal well-being, all leading to building a Smart Bangladesh that will be equitable, innovative, and prosperous. Furthermore, these sessions were also a testament to Bangladesh’s commitment towards other nations in the Global South, assisting them with their own digitization journeys and helping them achieve #ZeroDigitalDivide.



  • Understanding DPI’s Transformative Potential with Digital Inclusivity

Foster a common understanding and developing global guidelines for inclusive, frugal, and ethical next-gen AI-driven DPI/DPG solutions that priorities inclusivity and #ZeroDigitalDivide

  • Technological Framework for Responsible AI

Delve deeply into responsible AI regulations that promote innovation in DPI/DPG while ensuring safety and fairness.

  • Regulatory Guardrails and Data Security

Facilitate knowledge sharing and identify areas for collaboration for capacity building, emerging AI tools, AI-enabled inclusive DPI, and the secure and unbiased use of data.

  • Global Collaboration for #ZeroDigitalDivide

Accelerate cross-border collaboration among governments, UN agencies, the private sector, and academia, fostering partnerships for inclusive DPI and DPG solutions through technology to leave no one behind.



Session Details:

  • Parallel Sessions: Sectoral DPI Discussion
    1. ReachingBeyond: DPI Bridging E-Commerce to the Unreached
    2. FinClusion: DPI Enabled Financial Equity
    3. CitizenConnect: DPI Empowered Public Service Excellence
    4. FutureLearn Initiatives: Shaping Education Beyond Tomorrow through DPI
    5. HealthGuard Innovations: DPI in Healthcare for Safer Lives
    6. Green DigiSpace: DPI Shaping Sustainable Future Landscape
    7. ZeroDigitalDivide International Inclusiveness for Accessibility
    8. EnGendering DPI Towards Women


  • Parallel Sessions AI in Action: Driving Innovations Across Key Sectors
    1. Reshaping E-commerce: AI-Enabled Smart Solutions
    2. Revolutionizing FinTech: AI Bridging Financial Divide
    3. Digitizing Public Services: Harnessing AI for Personalized Solutions
    4. Reimagining EduTech: Learning for Tomorrow with AI
    5. Smart well-being: Transforming Healthcare with AI 
    6. Green Ecosystem: AI for Sustainable Energy


Key Highlights:

  • Strategic Vision and Policy Integration:
  • Bangladesh outlined ambitious visions, such as Smart Bangladesh 2041, leveraging AI and DPI to enhance service quality, ensure unified access, and optimize resource allocation.
  • Emphasis was placed on structured AI plans integrated into economic policies, skills development, and fostering public-private global partnerships to imagine a world with #ZeroDigitalDivide.
  • Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) as a Critical Enabler:
  • DPI emerged as a critical enabler of digital transformation, shaping economic structures and ensuring last-person access to foundational elements like identification, payments, and data exchanges.
  • The interoperability and inclusiveness of DPI were highlighted as foundational blocks for reliable governance ecosystems.
  • Fusion of DPI and Responsible AI:
  • Envisioning a transformative era for the Global South, speakers emphasized the fusion of DPI and responsible AI to create trustworthy and efficient systems at the core of governance.
  • DPI and AI integration were positioned as cornerstones for overcoming challenges, ethical dilemmas, and ensuring a prosperous digital future for all.
  • Success Stories and Real-World Applications:
  • Success stories from Bangladesh showcased digitalization efforts in government services, disease identification, education, and financial inclusion, driven by AI solutions.
  • The Smart Bangladesh 2041 vision underlined the potentially transformative role of AI in sectors like health, education, agriculture, and governance, and how it needed to couple with DPI to ensure a #ZeroDigitalDivide world.
  • Global Collaboration and Skills Development:
  • Calls for global collaboration were echoed, emphasizing the pooling of AI knowledge, data, and models for informed decision-making and policy guidance.
  • Prioritizing skills development emerged as a crucial aspect, ensuring individuals understand the capabilities and limitations of AI.



Dhaka Declaration

At the conclusion of this was the unveiling of the Dhaka Declaration, spearheaded by the Honorable Minister of State for Information and Communication Technology Division, Zunaid Ahmed Palak, MP. The declaration highlights commitments to bridge the global digital divide, emphasizing equitable access, responsible AI, collaboration, and inclusion. The historic pledge envisions a future where technology serves all, leaving no one behind in the digital era and ensuring #ZeroDigitalDivide.

The Dhaka Declaration is as follows:

  1. Equity in Digital Access:
  2. Harnessing the Power of DPI and AI
  3. Responsible AI for Global Benefits
  4. Collaboration, Partnership, and Alliances:
  5. North-South and South-South Triangular Cooperation
  6. Education and Digital Literacy
  7. Inclusion for Frugal Innovation
  8. Financial Inclusion
  9. Technological Framework for Responsible AI
  10. Gender Inclusivity



  1. Equity in Digital Access: We are resolutely committed to closing the digital divide by championing equal and equitable access to digital resources and technologies for all, without regard for location, economic status, or demographics, recognizing that a just and interconnected world hinges on leaving no one behind in the digital era.
  2. Harnessing the Power of DPI and AI: We recognize the pivotal role of Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) in democratizing digital services and information access. We vow to champion secure, reliable, and affordable DPI and AI systems that facilitate internet access, e-governance, and vital digital services. Our commitment extends to exploring AI applications across all aspects of human life.
  3. Responsible AI for Global Benefits: We acknowledge AI’s potential to drive innovation, entrepreneurship and progress across various verticals of human development, with an unwavering commitment to promoting responsible and ethical AI. This commitment prioritizes humanity over technology, emphasizing transparency, accountability, inclusivity, and the mitigation of biases and discrimination.
  4. 4. Collaboration, Partnership, and Alliances: We emphasize on the imperative of global collaboration among governments, academia, industry, civil society, the private sector, and international organizations to effectively combat the digital divide. We advocate for knowledge sharing, resource allocation, and capacity building to expedite progress. We underscore the importance of forging networks and alliances that span society, sectors, and the globe. 
  5. North-South and South-South-North Triangular Cooperation: We recognize the significance of North-South and South-South triangular cooperation as vital mechanisms for international development and collaboration. Through these alliances, we seek to ensure that digital technologies and the epistemologies supporting the development of such technologies are accessible to all, regardless of location.
  6. Education and Digital Literacy: We acknowledge the pivotal role of education and digital learning in ensuring digital inclusivity. We endorse initiatives for digital skills training, STEAM education, and global digital literacy. Our commitment involves exploring initiatives from various countries and forming alliances to engage young and scientific minds.
  7. Inclusion for Frugal Innovation: We celebrate innovation as a catalyst for inclusion, emphasizing that innovative solutions must encompass diverse perspectives and address the specific needs of underserved communities. The individuals, especially the children, the resource constrained and physically or emotionally challenged human persons remain central to our development ethos. This inclusive approach aims to advance access to healthcare, education, economic opportunities, self-employment, and value through human ingenuity and compassion. 
  8. Financial Inclusion: We explore contributions to enhance financial inclusion and equity, paving the way for a more inclusive and economically equitable world, while revolutionizing FinTech. 
  9. Technological Framework for Responsible AI: We commit ourselves to the development and implementation of a technological framework that fosters responsible AI regulations while promoting innovation in DPI and DPG solutions. This framework prioritizes safety, fairness, and ethical considerations. AI must ensure augmentation of human capabilities and perceptions and not constrain them in any form. 
  10. Gender Inclusivity: We recognize the importance of gender inclusivity and commit to advancing equal opportunities and representation for all genders in the digital landscape, fostering an environment that values and supports diverse perspectives. Gender must be mainstreamed, and all genders must be equals in their inclusion into the decision-making process.

In closing, we must reaffirm our dedication to fostering digital inclusivity, providing universal access to technology, and adhering to Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) & ethical AI principles. Together, we can overcome barriers and create a future where everyone benefits from the opportunities of the digital age. Together, we can ensure #ZeroDigitalDivide