Countries around the world are experiencing unprecedented digital transformation. As a result, previously disconnected communities are coming online and increasing their reliance on new technologies and skills. However, not everyone benefits equally from digital transformation, so USAID is working to expand digital access through investments in digital connectivity. In order to be effective and equitable in achieving access, USAID’s approach to digital programming must extend beyond access to physical devices and infrastructure and ensure that users possess a nuanced set of skills to meaningfully, responsibly, and safely participate in their digital ecosystem. This set of competences, also known as digital literacy, is central to ensuring that the benefits of the Digital Revolution are available to all members of society.
The Digital Literacy Primer defines digital literacy in the context of development and discusses sector-specific guidance for incorporating digital literacy into development programming. It provides a shared language and understanding of the components of digital literacy to improve USAID’s programming, understanding, and collaboration on this topic that is critical to effective development programming.