Founded in 1985 and headquartered in the United States, Qualcomm is one of the world’s top producers of fabless semiconductors, which are mainly used in wireless devices. Qualcomm has employees in more than 30 countries around the globe.
Qualcomm supports the Mentoring Women in Business Program, which it implemented in collaboration with several partners. The programme provides entrepreneurs in Malaysia with tablets and learning applications to enhance skills and knowledge in the areas of business and technology. The company also reports data on employees with disabilitiesand efforts to provide an inclusive workplace, such as providing closed captioning and sign language interpreters during meetings.
The company has a number of initiativesfor digital skills development and school connectivity carried out under the umbrella of its Wireless Reach programme. In the Philippines, Qualcomm partners on a programme teaching mobile literacy, enabling participants to become mobile money agents. Its Wireless Solutions for Fisheries in Senegal initiative enhances the livelihoods of Senegalese fishers by teaching them how to use their mobile phones to gather market data, use weather apps and GPS applications, and access video instructions on best practices forfish processing. The company’sThinkabit Labinitiativeoperates in schools across the United States,teaching coding and other technical skills. Qualcomm’s 21st Century Classroom providescurriculum support and connectivity via internetconnected smart boards to schools in rural China.
The company supports the tech innovation ecosystem through venture capital investment,an innovation lab for Indian start-ups, and support for social and non-profit entrepreneurs.Qualcomm also contributes to research on sustainability issues. For example,itsupports dronebased researchthat aims to mitigate negative environmental effects on agriculture in Brazil. The company demonstrates research and development (R&D) diversity by reporting the number of women in technical roles and the locations of its R&D facilities.
The company has an opportunity to improve transparency by disclosing its contributions to its digital skills programmes. It should also arrange third-party assessments to better understand the impactsand potential for replication.