Youth & Opportunity
Engineering , Math
As I write this post, over 400 students from every corner of the world are competing in Warsaw, Poland at the finals of the 2010 Imagine Cup.
Every single one of these students is a winner.
Over 325,000 students registered for this year’s competition and through local and regional competitions, these 400 have battled their way to the world finals.
The Imagine Cup challenges students to think about how they can use technology to solve some of the world’s toughest problems as inspired by the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals.
Their ingenuity and creativity, not to mention their technology skills, are absolutely incredible. I had the privilege of attending the 2009 Imagine Cup world finals in Cairo, Egypt and it’s impossible to share the excitement of the event through a single blog post.
The great news is that you can follow the excitement online.
The Imagine Cup World Festival takes place on July 8th 2010 when the overall winners will be announced.
Like many European countries, Norway has an aging population. Today, 13% of the population is above the age of 67 and by 2020 it is estimated that will grow to 22%. In 2008, the Norwegian Government presented a widely welcomed parliamentary white paper “An Information Society For All” which addresses key priorities for the country and aims to ensure that all sectors of Norwegian society enjoy the benefits of technology and the internet.
Today in Norway, while overall internet usage is very high with nine out of ten Norwegians below the age of 55 using the internet on a daily basis, less than five out of ten people over the age of 68 are regular users.
Microsoft Norway has been partnering with NGOs to address the challenge of improving the general population’s IT skills for several years and there is an increased focus on how we bring those skills to people over the age of 55.
We have a long standing partnership with a Norwegian organization “Seniornett” who we support through funding, equipment and software. Seniornett is focused on increasing digital participation by people above the age of 55, through a national network of clubs offering training courses and meeting places for seniors who wish to learn how to use computer and the internet. Seniornett provided training to more than 18,000 seniors in 2009 and they aim to ensure that 250,000 seniors are active on the Internet by 2014.
We’re also working closely with the Norwegian Red Cross on projects such as the Women’s café which provides computer and internet training. In Oslo, many of our employees use the three volunteering days they have each year to support the Woman’s Café. Microsoft volunteers provide women attending the café with personal computer and internet training. The café is especially popular amongst immigrants. Over 40% of immigrants in Norway have little or no IT skills, and Microsoft employees do outstanding work providing them with these essential IT skills. We think it’s a great example of how our people can use their skills in a way that directly benefits their local community – and make some good friends while they do so!
Microsoft Norway General Manager Hege Skryseth guiding Karimi Mariam through the wonders of technology.
Both the Seniornett and Women’s Café initiatives are now also supported by the national government through their e-inclusion agenda. It’s a great example of our ongoing commitment to drive effective citizenship programs in partnership with the public, private and nonprofit sectors and of course our people.
Find out more about our citizenship activities in Norway on the Local Impact Map
Kjetil Brun Thorvik
Kjetil Brun Thorvik is the Citizenship lead for Microsoft Norway. Born in Geneva, Switzerland, he currently resides in Oslo, Norway. He has a business degree from Norwegian School of Management and over six years’ of experience as a corporate affairs consultant specializing in corporate citizenship and reputation management.
Our mission is to help people and businesses throughout the world realize their
Explore the positive impact of local programs promoted and supported by Microsoft
around the world.
News, perspectives and analysis on legal and policy issues.
© 2013 Microsoft
Privacy Statement |
Connect With Us