The World Bank is a vital source of financial and technical assistance to developing countries around the world. After signing both global and Sub-Saharan Africa-focused memorandums of understanding, Microsoft and the World Bank have pledged to help support social and economic development by leveraging information and communications technology. Through this partnership, the World Bank and Microsoft will develop programs to support the global development priorities of delivering knowledge and learning services, solving public goods issues, and fostering inclusive and sustainable globalization.
The World Bank and Microsoft have worked together around the world on several initiatives including ICT industry policy and capacity-building workshops with Cisco and Intel, collaboration with Microsoft Research in India on financial services delivery through mobile phones, and improving the quality and relevance of non-formal education for youth in Indonesia.
The priorities of the partnership include science and technology, increasing ICT access for small- and medium-sized enterprises, helping to develop the local software economy and local ICT skills, enhancing remittances technology, and building disaster-response capabilities in Sub-Saharan Africa.
Proposed initiatives include adapting the Microsoft Innovation Center model to offer software development courses in education, business skills and market development training, and youth empowerment programs that can serve as the basis for local job creation.