Dreams, facts and technology

Digitalisation is an important driver of development, but only if everyone benefits from it equally. akzente has gathered interesting facts and figures to show how much needs to be done to bridge the digital divide.

Agriculture 2.0

Digitalisation offers significant potential in agriculture – including in developing countries. It can make an important contribution to food security. Whether it be apps with weather forecasts, tips on pest control or digitally controlled irrigation – the market for digital products in agriculture is growing. In 2020, it was worth almost USD 12 billion, with strong growth anticipated for the years ahead.

Source: Market Study Report

Let’s surf!

Of the approximately 8 billion people on earth, 5.25 billion – roughly two thirds – now have access to the internet. This figure has increased by a staggering 1,355 per cent since the turn of the millennium. The one billion threshold was passed in 2005. In terms of sustainable development opportunities, this is a pressing issue: of the remaining third of people without internet access, 96 per cent live in developing countries. Here, too, there is a striking urban-rural divide: globally, the proportion of internet users is twice as high in urban centres as in rural areas.

Sources: BroadbandSearch,, UNDP, International Telecommunication Union

Surplus of men

There continues to be a gender gap among IT workers – in almost every country in the world. Women are up to 21 per cent less represented in the industry than men, and this share has even fallen in recent years. The global demand for software engineers and other digital specialists is huge. But in many countries, cultural and economic barriers prevent women from entering the IT sector.


Africa embraces mobile money

Africa uses mobile transactions for most of its banking – the continent accounts for more than 66 per cent of all worldwide mobile money transactions. And Africa also leads the way in terms of the total value of mobile banking transactions, with a share of 64 per cent.

Source: Statista

Fast, faster, fastest

The internet community is growing about eight times faster than the global population, with around 900,000 new users every day – that’s approximately 625 every minute.


Mobile internet

Using a desktop computer to access the internet is now the exception: more than 90 per cent of all users access the internet via a mobile device, with the majority using a smartphone.

Source: BroadbandSearch

Asia on the up and up

The COVID-19 pandemic boosted online trade worldwide. Asia, which currently accounts for almost 60 per cent of digital retail sales, has benefitted most. And Asian e-commerce is expected to almost double again by 2025, to two trillion US dollars per year.

Source: World Economic Forum

The murky side of digitalisation

Digitalisation is also increasing the mountain of e-waste, which in 2021 alone was more than 57 million tonnes. Less than one fifth of this is recycled. The biggest producers of e-waste are China, USA and India. Estonia, Norway and Iceland have the highest e-waste recycling rates.

Source: The Roundup

A shark alert for the ears

By far the most-viewed video on YouTube is the ‘Baby Shark Dance’ from South Korea. The animated music video has so far been viewed more than 11 billion times and has been an earworm for countless millions around the globe. Statistically, every person on earth has seen it at least once.

Sources:, YouTube