Fighting Digital Poverty with Paul Finnis from Digital Poverty Alliance
In this episode, we speak to Paul Finnis, CEO of the Learning Foundation and Digital Poverty Alliance, discussing his inspiring work helping children achieve their full potential through the effective use of technology with an ultimate goal to eliminate digital poverty by 2030.
"We kept finding enormous numbers of young people who were not connected at home at all or have limited connectivity," he explains. "Digital should fit into people's lives, particularly the most disadvantaged, and not be an additional burden."
Paul gives us further insight into the real-life impact of digital poverty, causing many children and young people to remain at school without having their ambitions and their potential fully realised.
We discuss how with each new development in technology, more people are left behind, worsening the existing inequities around race, gender, age, ability, and income.
Further conversation leads us into the role of the pandemic in intensifying the UK's digital divide; now, only 51% of households earning between £6,000-10,000 have home internet access compared with 99% of households with an income of over £40,001. The link between poverty and digital exclusion is obvious. In this context, Paul emphasises that providing access to a device alone cannot end digital exclusion.
As the podcast heads home, we learn a bit about Paul himself — the one tech product that has been a game-changer for him, and his idea of one problem tech can't solve (and why).
To learn more about Paul's work at the Learning foundation and Digital Poverty Alliance, visit: https://learningfoundation.org.uk and https://digitalpovertyalliance.org