UN Digital Academy – A New UNICC Service for UN Digital Literacy

16 March, 2020

Photo: UNHCR/Ostermann

Enabling continuous learning and capacity-building for UN organizations

Worldwide, COVID-19 precautions have meant that virtually every UN organization has staff and stakeholders teleworking worldwide. This is a huge disruption, but many international development organizations in the UN family are already on the path to deliver their services from the digital workplace.

UNICC and the Tech for Social Impact Group at Microsoft have together launched the UN Digital Academy, offering UN Agencies a centralized learning platform to offer digital and technology skills and capabilities for their staff and stakeholders. In this way UN Agencies can best leverage their tech investments with innovative productivity tools. The UN Digital Academy supports the first commitment of the UN Secretary-General’s Strategy on New Technologies, to deepen the UN’s internal capacities and exposure to new technologies.

The UN Digital Academy, a new service offering from UNICC to UN Agencies, is a learning platform to deliver training to staff and stakeholders in an easy and efficient way. The platform serves as a central location and repository of training resources and content.

It supports the first commitment in the Secretary General’s strategy: deepen the UN’s internal capacities and exposure to new technologies. It does so by offering Microsoft knowledge and engagement for its current and continuous technology solutions that UN Agencies have deployed or may be deploying within their organizations.

What does the UN Digital Academy offer?

This new UNICC service offers curated content on role-based learning tracks on productivity tools, accessibility features, app development, data science and cloud computing through an interactive learning environment customised for the UN family. The first release covers O365 content to help all users familiarize with these apps quickly in this period of remote working, to support Client and Partner Organizations cope with the current Coronavirus pandemic.

UN Digital Academy supports learning in low-bandwidth networks and offline. Learners can access courses anytime and from any device. Mobility support means users can learn on the fly while they are on the road or away from the office. Content is curated to be relevant to UN staff and is kept up to date by Microsoft.

Learning paths can be customized according to an employee’s job function. Content is available in English, Spanish, and French. Moreover, UN Digital Academy offers the ability to track the learner’s training progress, with reports that display progress at an organization, group or course level.

Microsoft directly supports the UN Digital Academy by providing regularly updated content while UNICC manages the service to ensure the highest quality at a minimum cost.

Several UN Agencies are interested, and a pilot is underway to assess the value and benefits for the organization.