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UNESCO & Sun Microsystems announce joint education and community development effort powered by open technologies


To support social and economic development, UNESCO and Sun Microsystems signed a collaboration agreement on 18 May at the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) Forum 09.

The agreement is part of UNESCO’s ongoing effort to improve digital inclusion globally by partnering with the private sector. Under its terms, Sun Microsystems and UNESCO will promote the use of open source technologies, including and OpenDocument Format (ODF) standard, as a low-cost way to improve education with universal access to information and knowledge. They will also support the development of open and inclusive knowledge societies in developing and emerging economies.

The agreement includes the creation of a centre of excellence for adoption of open technologies and collaboration on promoting adoption of and Open Document Format Tools. As part of these projects, Sun will provide availability, expertise and training materials for its open source software, while UNESCO will focus on promoting adoption of open technologies. UNESCO will work to identify institutions that would become partners for providing support and training in the use of and ODF.

Sun’s collaboration agreement with UNESCO is part of the company’s broader initiative to bring more people into the information network and to allow them to gain access to the tools, skills, technology and innovation to realise their full potential.