Government of Bangladesh Works With IBM to Accelerate Innovation and Strengthen the Ecosystem for Digital Technologies

  • LICT (Leveraging ICT for Growth Employment and Governance) along with IBM established the first Center of Excellence for Digital Technologies in Dhaka.
  • IBM selected as the technology partner for this Center of Excellence.

IBM (NYSE) recently announced a collaboration with Government of Bangladesh to help accelerate innovation and strengthen the ecosystem for emerging technologies in the country. As a part of the collaboration, LICT which is a project under the Ministry of IT, Government of Bangladesh, selected IBM as the technology partner for setting up the first Center of Excellence for Digital Technologies in Dhaka, that will provide the platform for enterprises, start-ups, incubators, innovators and university students to accelerate innovation, research, skills and develop solutions by leveraging the latest digital technologies including Data, AI, and Blockchain on IBM Cloud.
 
The Center of Excellence is based on a partnership model to promote and drive the adoption of digital technologies among industry verticals like Banking, Retail, Manufacturing and the start-up community. The center will provide an ecosystem for like-minded enterprise clients, innovators and university students to learn new skills and build on their existing ideas while collaborating with industry bodies. LICT will work along side IBM to develop and drive curated programs which will help accelerate the Digital Bangladesh Mission.
 
“We have completed five Proof of Concepts in AI and Blockchain under the mentorship of IBM. I believe these PoCs can be game changers as they would disrupt business as usual once implemented. The Honorable Prime Minister of Bangladesh Sheikh Hasina, in her Digital Bangladesh Vision has highlighted the need for technology to drive the growth of the country. The Government of Bangladesh, under her guidance, has embraced the opportunities of 4IR, and I believe this Center of Excellence is one of the first steps towards that journey. We are excited to be working with IBM in implementing the Center of Excellence on frontier technologies and enabling our vision,” said Sami Ahmed, Component Team Leader (IT/ITES), Leveraging ICT for Growth Employment and Governance.
 
The initial Proof of Concepts delivered through this center included leveraging AI to develop solutions that will enable lenders with detailed insights about the applicant prior to loan disbursements and telecom operators to respond to customer queries through chatbot designed to converse in local language. Some of these initial projects will also leverage blockchain for creating an ecosystem for supply chain management for the manufacturing sector, smart investments for retail investors in the financial sector and an e-pension book for school teachers. In addition, the center will address skilling requirements of enterprise developers through physical and virtual sessions on digital technologies.
 
“IBM has been at the forefront of empowering people and organizations with the most sophisticated tools and platforms to accelerate their digital transformation, securely. Today, organizations across industry verticals are leveraging latest technologies to generate critical insights and stay relevant. With Bangladesh’s focus on Digitization, it’s the perfect opportunity for enterprises to make this transition. This Center of Excellence reemphasizes our commitment not just towards enabling and preparing enterprises for the cognitive era but also skilling the next-gen developers in Bangladesh,” said Gaurav Sharma, Vice President IBM India Software Labs and Growth IBM India and South Asia.
 
IBM had also organized the Call for Code Hackathon in association with Government of Bangladesh. Over 180 developers built 25 use-cases on IBM platforms to contribute to the Global Call for Code Challenge which helps reduce the impact of natural disasters through technology.
 
Call for Code
Call for Code is a five-year global initiative that started in 2018. It is the largest and most ambitious effort bringing together start-up, academic, NGO, and enterprise developers to solve pressing societal issues. The goal in 2019 is to unleash the power of cloud, AI, blockchain and IoT technologies to creating sustainable and scalable open source technologies that will save lives. Created by philanthropic producer David Clark Cause, IBM is the Founding Partner of Call for Code. The Linux Foundation, United Nations Human Rights and the American Red Cross are also our partners in this initiative. As Founding Partner, IBM invested $30 million USD over five years to help build a better future, save human lives and utilize the full potential of developers to help people, their communities and society.

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