Digital Development Forum

Please register here for the Global Digital Development Forum, co-organized by USAID, Chemonics, Digital Impact Alliance, IntraHealth International, CRS/ICT4D Conference, TechChange and Save the Children.

Please note that the Global Digital Development Forum took place on May 6, 2020. While the live event has concluded, we encourage you to register in order to explore the session recordings and tech demos, and to participate in the discussion threads (which will remain active through August 2020).

We are all rapidly mobilizing for COVID-19 Digital Response. At the same time, we still need to solve long-term challenges to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals and build an open, inclusive, and secure digital ecosystem that provides a safer more prosperous future for us all.

Digital technologies and implementation methodologies offer the potential to accelerate change and increase social and economic development. ICT4D is no longer optional -- the field of Digital Development has matured into a formal component of global humanitarian and development efforts.

Yet barriers to achieving ICT4D success remain. Policy and legal frameworks have not kept pace with innovation, market failures limit access, privacy and cybersecurity risks threaten marginalized and vulnerable populations, and overall, the international development community has not yet adapted to the new challenges presented by this digital age.

As a community, we need to share our experiences, learn from others, and advance our collective ability to effect change, using technology. We must leverage online collaboration tools to include practitioners in every country. And we can lead by example.

Session Submissions

Update 4/21/20: Session submissions have closed for the 2020 Global Digital Development Forum.

The Global Digital Development Forum will feature:

  • Keynote Presentations on transformative digital development topics of global importance
  • Lightning Talks that showcase new ideas or focused learning on ICT4D success and failures in quick, fast-paced presentations
  • Breakout sessions featuring lively debates on key contested issues or interactive roundtable discussions that explore complex deployment challenges
  • Workshops and skill-building sessions with practical, hands-on exercises and approaches
  • Vendor demonstrations of new solutions and key innovations ready for rapid deployment

All session leads will receive dedicated training in online learning from TechChange to ensure an engaging virtual event.

Session Topics

We will have sessions displaying a wide range of ideas and viewpoints across the international development and humanitarian relief sectors, within these broad topic categories.

  • Digital Health: COVID-19, HIV/AIDS, Mother & Child, Family Planning, Health Workforce, Supply Chain
  • EduTech: Primary, Secondary, Tertiary, Adult, Informal, and Digital Literacy and Skills
  • AgriTech: Smallholder Farming, Animal Husbandry, Aquaculture, and their Value Chains
  • Digital Economy: Digital Financial Services, Digital Identity, Agency and Inclusion
  • eGovernment: Community Engagement, Elections, Activism, Human Rights
  • Humanitarian Response: Natural disasters, Conflict/post-conflict
  • Responsible Data: Collection, Analysis, Presentation, Risks, and Protections

We expect a COVID-19 Digital Response theme in many non-health sessions, featuring learning from past interventions with SARS/MARS, Ebola, HIV, and other viral infection epidemics.

Each session will include underlying concepts like data privacy and security, beneficiary protection and safeguarding, inclusion, the role of gender, and how to monitor and evaluate success.

Next Session

Started May 6, 2020

Global Digital Development Forum

This virtual ICT4D conference will be a global transformative peer-learning digital development event specifically designed to include practitioners from low- and middle-income countries. We aim to move past the significant travel and cost barriers that restrict attendance at traditional events and lead the industry with:

  • A headlining keynote presentation from USAID and multiple interactive online sessions, led by trained facilitators.
  • Sessions spanning the globe from 4:00 GMT to 20:00 GMT featuring your peers at the cutting edge of technology and development in Asia, Africa, Europe, and Americas.
  • Free participation in engaging compelling, relevant sessions on TechChange’s robust online learning platform.
  • Inspiring experiences and results from innovative projects that achieve development goals with new and emerging technologies.

Please register now to be considered for participation and pay special attention to the Relevance section. Hundreds of participants will join this special online event from dozens of countries, however, we still have capacity limits to ensure a great conference and you don’t want to miss out.


The Global Digital Development Forum was inspired by the ICTworks post, Coronavirus Canceled Your Conference – Let’s Organize a Virtual Event, which led to a vibrant discussion on how we could develop a virtual ICT4D conference.

From that conversation emerged the desire to build on previous USAID Digital Development Forums in Ghana, India, El Salvador, Zambia, and the United States and expand both the focus and participation beyond any specific donor or country, to include a global audience of LMIC practitioners.

USAID, Chemonics, Save the Children, TechChange, IntraHealth International, and the Digital Impact Alliance agreed to co-organize the event around major themes important to international development with a variety of staff supporting this event.

Contact us if you’d like to be a co-organizer.