Welcome to OCCAM
The Observatory on Digital Communication was established in 1996 by UNESCO in Milan, with the Agreements signed by the Director General, Federico Mayor and Mayor Marco Formentini in June 1996. The acronym stands for Observatory for Cultural and Audiovisual Communication in the Mediterranean.
Since 2003, OCCAM has been associated with the United Nations Department of Public Information, while in 2005 it received Special Consultative Status at the UN’s Social and Economic Council (ECOSOC). Since 2006 OCCAM is leader of the e-service for development Community of Expertise within the Global Alliance for Information and Communications Technologies and Development (UN – GAID), initiative launched by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon in Kuala Lumpur.
OCCAM was founded with the mission to fight poverty as effectively as possible using the new technologies and to promote sustainable development actions in the Least Developed Countries (LDCs), and works to support the UN strategies for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), former Millennium Development Goals (MDGs, 2000-2015).
OCCAM’s actions, besides its function of Observatory on Digital Communication with studies and research, focuses also on two other main initiatives:
the Infopoverty World Conference that has been held annually since 2001 in the UN headquarters in New York; it takes stock of the phenomena of the digital revolution as it can be employed to strengthen the fight against poverty;
the Infopoverty Programme that collects the operational suggestions emerging from the conference to turn them into projects realized in various parts of the world.
As part of the Infopoverty program, OCCAM promoted the foundation of the Infopoverty Institute at the University of Oklahoma in 2004, to spread the Infopoverty vision in the American academic world, having as its scope to improve the living conditions of the population with ICT.