Tech Innovation in Corporate Responsibility
Technology is an inseparable part of society. Innovative gadgets and devices influence how humans interact with the world and each other and can often be used to affect positive change. While the utility and application of technology is ever-evolving, the goals of technology remain constant—to solve real-world problems, fulfill human needs, and present new opportunities.
Through its corporate responsibility, the private sector is able to further these goals by implementing technology to help solve some of today’s greatest challenges. Whether coordinating disaster relief efforts, growing the global food supply, or educating the next generation, companies are developing technologies to improve lives, safety, and opportunities.
However, it takes more than the technological innovation to solve problems. It involves collective rethinking of how society views challenges and how to engage communities to address them. Cross-sector collaboration between businesses, nonprofits, and government agencies is therefore critical, with each sector bringing unique skills, assets, and perspectives to create and execute more comprehensive solutions.
Showcasing Tech Innovation in Corporate Responsibility
To that end, we profiled the event Digital Empowers: Accelerating Innovation for Business and Social Good, which brought together business leaders, technical experts, and on-the-ground partners to discuss technological innovation and social impact. Participants learned how organizations in various industries leverage budding technologies and digital innovations—including blockchain, cloud analytics, robotics, and virtual reality—through new ways of thinking and collaborating to increase access and equity to individuals and communities worldwide.
Here are highlights from several companies at the event that are using technology for social good:
In places without a dependable energy grid, BitLumens has distributed solar power devices and connects them to blockchain. Through use of the devices, users augment their credit scores and investors can view detailed location and power generation data about their investments.
Discovery Education is implementing virtual reality (VR) to teach social studies curriculums to children with learning disabilities as well as provide instruction on welding at community colleges. Discovery then receives real-time feedback from the courses. Such information permits the company to improve the user experience and maximize VR presentation and instruction.
UPS, in partnership with drone company Zipline and Gavi, has developed a medical drone delivery network in Rwanda. A centralized service receives orders for medical supplies from rural hospitals, and flies drones with the supplies to these remote locations to deposit the orders. As a success, the partnership was able to quickly deliver over 10,000 pints of blood for postpartum hemorrhaging and other serious medical emergencies over a year’s time.
Download the event recap below to learn more about how technology is improving the effectiveness of social programs and transforming philanthropy to respond to and reduce social and economic disparities.