Summer 2003

From HP, Conference Sponsor
Local Support, National Implications
by Nancy Iaconis

If we had a crystal ball that provided a glimpse into the future, it might show us a world where all people had access to some form of technology. But, even though we know crystal balls are not real, we can do something to equalize everyone's access to technology and to the flow of information.

More than two years ago, HP Chairman and CEO Carly Fiorina's proclaimation that HP would be a company committed to global citizenship prompted the creation of an e-inclusion vision for HP. This vision was based on the premise that technology, in conjunction with communities, could help people learn, work, and thrive.

The e-inclusion mission is to provide people access to greater social and economic opportunities by closing the gap between technology-empowered and technology-excluded communities, focusing on sustainability for the communities and HP. To fulfill this mission, HP has developed a number of philanthropic initiatives and forged public/private partnerships to help underserved communities fulfill their aspirations for participation in the digital age. Many of those investments have been in community technology centers.

Janiece Evans-Page, Director of e-inclusion and Global Solutions for HP Philanthropy and Education, noted, "CTCs are increasingly demonstrating that they are important assets in building a community's human, social, and economic capital. We've been able to leverage these rising community assets with HP's technology expertise to create positive change in many underserved communities across the U.S."

An example of one initiative is the HP Community Technology Centers Grant that awarded HP technology to twenty-six non-profit organizations and educational institutions for community centers targeting adults and youth in underserved communities. The awards include computer equipment and in-kind volunteer components provided by local HP employees.

Bess Stephens
Bess Stephens
"The CTC Grant represents a key strategy for HP Philanthropy," said Bess Stephens, Vice President of HP Philanthropy and Education. "This approach brings the best of HP—HP technology and talent—to communities that need it the most." By selecting organizations in underserved communities, the initiative contributes to HP's e-inclusion mission.

Another example is the HP and Magic Johnson Foundation (MJF) partnership. Over the past three years, HP and MJF have established 11 Magic Johnson HP Inventor centers in inner-city communities including Los Angeles, Washington, DC, Atlanta, Harlem, Chicago, Lansing, and Houston. Over the next 18 months, an additional 11 centers will be established. This partnership has enabled underserved communities to harness the benefits of the digital economy and empower youth, adults, and seniors to a new world through job skills training, computer literacy, financial and credit education, and health education. HP and MJF are developing a model that will enable future doctors, lawyers, teachers, technicians, and professionals to emerge from these centers.

The company's e-inclusion efforts are all about collaborating with partners and communities to create sustainable solutions that are culturally relevant and increase access to information, create new opportunities, and empower the citizens of these communities to enhance their lives.

HP may not have a crystal ball, but it is cognizant that a vision of technology access for all can be achieved through a collective community partnership. It is through cooperative efforts and collaboration that this vision will be shaped and realized.

Nancy Iaconis is the Community Technology Program Manager for HP Philanthropy & Education.


That's necessary to provide technology access for those who don't have it. But we should always remember that technology might be very dangerous in some people hands - just think of nuclear power. So it's a very complicated problem. A community has to be prepared to deal with high technology.

Posted by: Crystal at March 15, 2004 06:10 PM
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