What do Kaarika and Abhishek from India have in common? They’re both young and extremely passionate about increasing access to knowledge through digital and mobile technology. They are amongst the 25 delegates who will join this year’s Telenor Youth Forum in Oslo (#TYF15). The annual event, which coincides with the Nobel Peace Prize ceremony week, has the theme of #KnowledgeForAll this year.
“Our delegates bring unique ideas and thoughts based on multiple perspectives and that are rooted in a range of societal challenges. Most importantly, they see opportunities where others see barriers to making an impact. We want to engage with them to discuss and explore how Telenor and mobile technology can be part of driving inclusive change and improving access to knowledge,” says Sigve Brekke, President & CEO of Telenor Group.
The chosen delegates, 14 women and 11 men aged 18-28, are born into a digital age that encourages and enables untraditional and innovative solutions to societal challenges. An international selection panel consisting of representatives from civil society, academia and Telenor top management selected the final delegates from close to 2,000 applicants in 13 countries.
Sharad Mehrotra, CEO, Telenor India says, “These young leaders are the custodians of a digitally empowered society. Telenor Youth Forum offers a global platform to present their ideas of inclusive growth and change. At Telenor India, we are committed to build a digital future for India and believe that mobile technology will be a catalyst for development of our society. I congratulate the participants for representing India at such a prestigious global platform.”
21-year-old Kaarika Das is a graduate in economics from Kirori Mal College, University of Delhi, and is currently pursuing a part time language course from St. Stephens, University of Delhi. Kaarika presented her app ‘Teleshiksha’ that provides a social platform to enable collaborative sharing of video courses. Teleshiksha will enable anyone with a mobile and Internet connection to build knowledge through access to publicly shared curriculums for free. The app has been designed to be used by not only individuals but also by educational institutions to reach a wider audience.
Abhishek Kaushal, 26-year-old IIM Ranchi graduate, was selected for his presentation on how Internet facilitates behavioural medicine through digital therapeutics. As 80% of diabetes occurs due to unhealthy lifestyle, Abhishek offered a solution to change one’s lifestyle digitally through a mobile app called ‘E-coach’. This app will create awareness on food habits and healthy living. It will also track user’s daily activity levels, sleep patterns, heart rate and weight all seamlessly getting uploaded to the mobile App through wearable health band and Bluetooth enabled weighing scale.
This is the third consecutive year of Telenor India participating in the Telenor Youth Forum, which till 2014 was known as Telenor Youth Summit.
“Universal access to education is in our grasp”
Telenor has invited a range of high-level and inspiring speakers for the Forum programme, who all share a passion for knowledge and increasing access to learning. A keynote address will be given by Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia, the world’s largest onlineencyclopedia.
“I’m excited to be participating in this year’s Telenor Youth Forum. The youth are the future, mobile is the future. The dream of universal access to education is in our grasp,” says Wales.
Other speakers include:
· Justin Ferrell, award-winning journalist & design-thinker, Stanford University’s d.school
· Torbjørn Røe-Isaksen, Norwegian Minister for Education and Research
· Santeri Koivisto from edugaming innovation MinecraftEdu
· Laila Bokhari, Norwegian State Secretary & owner of an all-girls’ school in Sultanabad, Pakistan
· Tim Aye-Hardy, founder of Myanmar mobile education project, myME
· Zihad Zaman, Jaago Foundation, which runs online schools with Grameenphone, Telenor Group’s company in Bangladesh
· Kelly Steen from Canadian storytelling start-up Wattpad
· Julia Firestone, Global Business Coalition for Education’sGlobal Education Platform
· Stefan Velja, young innovator from Serbia & gold medal winner at Brussels Innova 2014
Empowering a generation of digital natives
Telenor Youth Forum is a global platform where young opinion leaders from Asia and Europe meet to build bridges across borders through innovative ideas, solidarity and exchange of knowledge and thoughts.
“It’s a goal of ours to encourage young people to raise their voice for issues that matter, such as access to education and knowledge for all. The Nobel Peace Center is happy to once again partner with the Telenor Youth Forum because it gives a global stage to some of the most creative, passionate and optimistic of these voices. They have the chance to be part of a global fraternity of gifted young people with ideas and a drive to keep us all moving forward – towards peace and knowledge for all,” says Executive Director Bente Erichsen of the Nobel Peace Center.