Multistakeholder Pledge: Closing the Digital Gender Gap

Key outcomes

Protection, inclusion and empowerment of forcibly displaced women and girls to be a part of a connected society and have the capacity and access to technology. This may be achieved through:

  1. Member States ensuring that forcibly displaced women and girls have access to affordable digital devices and connectivity, and are included in national Information and Communications Technology (ICT) programs and plans and digital education rollouts.
  2. National legislation, policies, administrative and practical measures to effectively address the barriers that cause digital gender divide among forcibly displaced women and girls
  3. Private actors, inter-governmental organizations and non-governmental organizations (including tech companies) that improve connectivity to refugee hosting communities, support products that are suitable for specific displacement contexts and are tailored to the needs of women, and fund and share research on women’s digital needs and preferences within displacement contexts.


Digital advancements present opportunities to tackle development and humanitarian challenges, but inequalities in technology access and skills, particularly among women and girls, are evident. This gender gap is more pronounced among forcibly displaced women and girls compared to host populations. Refugee women and girls have valuable insights to define innovative solutions, as they understand the challenges and barriers they face and they have the right to express themselves, participate in public life without discrimination, and benefit from the transformative potential of the digital space. They should have the choice to be part of a connected society and access technology for a better future. This joint pledge aims to address barriers such as access, affordability, safety, and digital skills for refugee women and girls.

Pledge description

This Pledge will increase the number of stakeholders who are taking action to ensure that forcibly displaced women and girls are a part of a connected society through measures focused on providing digital protection, digital inclusion and empowerment.

Member states will commit to implement legislative, policy, administrative, practical measures and necessary funding to address the gender inequalities and barriers that lead to the exclusion of forcibly displaced women and girls from technologies, internet and ICT, especially through collaborations with women refugee-led organizations (WRLOs), communities and humanitarian organizations.

The private sector, inter-governmental organizations and non-governmental organizations will commit to start initiatives or build on existing initiatives which seek to increase digital literacy, digital inclusion, accessibility to affordable devices, improved connectivity and safe access and use of the internet for women and girls across all levels of ages, (dis)abilities

Academia and research institutions will commit to conducting research and sharing gender disaggregated data on the digital gender gap to inform policy and practice.

The pledge is transformational in innovation and scale (large number of stakeholders especially from the tech sector), invoking a highly collaborative approach leveraging diverse insights, expertise and interventions.


  • Member States
  • Inter-governmental organizations
  • regional organizations
  • international Organizations
  • CSOs including women Refugee-led Organizations
  • Academia and Research Institutions
  • Private sector including mobile network operators and tech companies.

Contact details

Mike Walton - [email protected], Esther Kirimi - [email protected], Sandra Siefert Stroem - [email protected]


  • 19 July 2023: Women Deliver Conference (Rwanda)
  • September 2023: UNGA side-event TBC – UNHCR participation?
  • October 2023: UNHCR event for practitioners, TBC

Contributions towards this multi-stakeholder pledge