Introducing this year’s report, Dr. Bruno Lanvin, Co-Founder & Director of the Portulans Institute, described how the Future Readiness Economic Index provides quantifiable information on how countries compare on digital readiness and transformation. H.E. Cina Lawson, Minister of Digital Economy & Transformation for the Togolese Government, noted how Togo has focused on the importance of cooperation and inclusion, identifying issues and using technology to solve them. H.E. Julio Jose Prado, Minister of Production, Foreign Trade & Investment for the Government of Ecuador, attested that collaboration leads to real action if partners act with immediacy and urgency. The traditional top-down approach is no longer viable in a digital world.
For Mariana Costa Checa, Co-Founder & CEO of Laboratoria, one key takeaway was how collaboration and action can help close divides. In future pandemics, women and girls need not be disproportionately affected. Kent Walker, President of Global Affairs for Google LLC, expressed his hope for digital solidarity, so that we can come together to make digital tools powerful for all.
Moving on to the practicalities, Lawson explained that Togo wanted to ensure citizens can participate in ensuring a future. This requires physical and digital infrastructure and social protections. Ecuador’s economic agenda, noted Prado, similarly works to ensure a competitive economic landscape for productivity, trade openness, and innovation. Checa reminded the audience that women are not yet fairly represented in digital transformation. Walker ended the panel by explaining that a digital transformation empowers people to access the wider world.
“We’ve talked a lot about how pandemics have affected women. We need to do a lot of work to make sure that women and girls are not as disproportionately affected in future pandemics.”
Mariana Costa Checa, Co-Founder & CEO, Laboratoria
“Digital transformation is a key priority to be future ready.”
Dr. Bruno Lanvin, Co-Founder & Director, Portulans Institute
“We wanted to design a digital transformation strategy. We want to make sure our citizens are a part of the digital economy.”
H.E. Cina Lawson, Minister of Digital Economy & Transformation, Togolese Government
“There’s an urgency to put together new policies. Traditional top-down approaches that we embraced before the pandemic can no longer lead to real change.”
H.E. Julio Jose Prado, Minister of Production, Foreign Trade & Investment, Government of Ecuador
“For me, it’s about digital solidarity. We need to see how companies and the civic sector can come together to enhance solutions that work for all of us.”
Kent Walker, President, Global Affairs, Google LLC