Digital Inclusion Benchmark
The Digital Inclusion Benchmark tracks how companies are helping to advance a more inclusive digital economy and society.
During WBA’s multi-stakeholder consultation phase, digital companies were identified by key stakeholders as among the most influential to achieve the SDGs. From mobile money applications that give the unbanked access to financial resources to bring themselves out of poverty, to internet and web applications that help people connect and cooperate globally, digital technologies have significant though currently untapped scope to accelerate the SDGs.
To unleash this potential, the barriers excluding billions of people from accessing and productively harnessing digital technology needs to be torn down. Digital technology companies must play a greater role for this to happen. WBA’s corporate benchmarking aims to highlight industries and companies that are currently leading the way in fostering digital inclusion to trigger a race to the top across the digital sector, as well as hold underachieving companies accountable.Read more about the seven systems transformations
The benchmark is free and publicly available, published annually and shared widely with government, investor and civil society stakeholders worldwide, including WBA allies.
First benchmark publication
Data collection, verification and analysis
June - November 2021
Second benchmark publication
Data collection, verification and analysis
Third benchmark publication
This third iteration of the Digital Inclusion Benchmark measures and ranks 200 of the world’s most influential technology companies on their responsibility to advance a more inclusive digital society. This is the first iteration that includes the Core Social Indicators (CSI). More specifically, the benchmark measures what companies are doing to:
- enhance universal access to digital technologies
- improve all levels of digital skills
- foster trustworthy use by mitigating risks and harms
- innovate openly, inclusively, and ethically.
This year we also assessed companies on 12 high-level societal expectations that all companies – digital or otherwise – should meet in order to play their part in ensuring that we leave no one behind. These include topics such as whether companies are paying workers a living wage, or paying fair taxes
From laptops, to online news platforms, to the WIFI connection that powers them, digital technology has become indispensable for everyday life. Digital technologies should be available to everyone. If left unaddressed, the growing gap between the under-connected and hyper-digitalised will widen, inflaming existing inequalities.
Frequently asked questions
The Digital Inclusion Benchmark FAQ page provides more elaborated responses to questions you might have as a participating company. Please do visit the page for more information on the benchmark process, the benefits to a participating company, the timelines for publication, etc.
Expert Review Committee
The Digital Inclusion Benchmark is developed in close collaboration with an Expert Review Committee (ERC), whose members support the core team with their expertise and experience.
Head, Regional Center for Studies on the Development of the Information Society (Cetic.br)
Executive Director, PUKAR
Senior Adviser to the President, World Bank Group
Senior Statistician, International Telecommunication Union
Melle Tiel Groenestege
Director Policy & Advocacy – Digital Inclusion, GSMA
Managing Director, Access Partnership
Executive Director, Internet Sans Frontieres
Senior Fellow, Graduate Institute
Analyst & Portfolio Manager, Equities, Fidelity International
As we build our work, we continue to engage with stakeholders across the globe through targeted communications with key organisations and representatives. We also encourage meaningful and constructive feedback.
Lourdes Montenegro, Lead Digital Sector Transformation at WBA:
The vast majority of the global population rely upon digital companies to connect with their work, families and communities; more than ever, their lives are defined by digital.
Our research discovers a disappointing lack of rigour and engagement with digital inclusion policies throughout the tech industry. We see a huge opportunity for change, but companies must take their responsibility as global citizens seriously.