In recent decades the global growth of digital technologies has transformed the lives of many people. Of the 3.2 billion people using the internet globally, two billion are from developing countries.  Among the poorest 20% of households, nearly seven out of ten have a mobile phone. If harnessed and used in the right way, digital innovations have the power to accelerate human development and bring improvements to the lives of poor people and the hard to reach. Digital technology is the force behind countless new frontier technologies that can increase people’s access to services, increase the flow of information and finances including to remote locations, and strengthen the opportunities of millions of people to learn, remain healthy, and secure livelihoods.

Principles for Digital Development recognising both the risk and the opportunity that digital technology presents for development, individuals, development organisations and donors began exploring how best to surface and spread best practice in the use of information and communication technology (ICT) tools. These discussions culminated in the Principles for Digital Development, a common set of ground rules that aim to institutionalise the many hard lessons learned in the use of information and communication technologies in development (ICT4D) projects.

HDIF’s Digital Approach sets out actionable steps for using the Principles for Digital Development to support cross-sector technology adoption and scaling-up for innovation-related practitioners (including HDIF and its partners) and policymakers in Tanzania. The prevalence of digital innovations in the HDIF portfolio presents an opportunity to generate learning from grantees who are putting the principles into practice in a Tanzanian context.

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