Microsoft provides support to communities in three ways: technology skills training, strengthening nongovernmental organizations through technology, and engaging our employees in their communities. With our thousands of partners around the world, we are committed to creating sustainable technology solutions that make a lasting difference in people’s lives.
Commitment to local and global development
The mission of Microsoft is to help people and businesses throughout the world realize their full potential. This means mobilizing our resources across the company and around the world to create opportunities in the communities where we do business, and to fulfill our commitment to serving the public good through innovative technologies and partnerships. Our overall goal is to enable sustained social and economic opportunity for everyone, including those at the middle and bottom of the world’s economic pyramid.
The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are an important influence on our strategy and activities because of our shared emphasis on global and local partnerships to change lives, and the clarity provided by the focus on real measures of human development within defined timeframes. Our efforts are also guided by our support for the United Nations (UN) Global Compact, which shapes both our business practices and corporate citizenship strategies.
In the past decade, Microsoft has initiated or joined partnerships with a number of United Nations agencies and other multilateral organizations that have internationally-agreed development goals, including the MDGs at the core of their mission and goals. In 2007, Microsoft joined the MDG Call to Action, in which leading companies pledged to implement concrete initiatives that apply their core business, skills, and expertise in a transformative and scalable manner that will enhance growth and wealth creation to help meet the MDGs. In 2010, the United Nations held the MDG Summit in New York to review the progress that has been made in the past five years. Leading up to the meeting, Microsoft’s founder and Chairman, Bill Gates, served as a member of The MDG Advocacy Group created by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon to build further political will and mobilize global action to make the MDG Summit a turning point in our collective effort to achieve the Goals by the 2015 target date.
In November 2010, the United Nations Foundation honored Microsoft with the inaugural Corporate Award for leadership in advancing UN causes, recognizing the work Microsoft is doing to help achieve the MDGs.
By working with partners to create relevant training opportunities and innovative tools for people who are underserved by technology, we believe we can help foster social and economic opportunities that change people's lives and transform communities. As part of the Microsoft Unlimited Potential commitment, our employability and workforce development programs support organizations that work to ensure that individuals have the IT skills they need to succeed in the twenty-first–century workplace.
Strengthening NGOs through Information Technology
Technology can be an amazing tool for advancing social and economic development-enabling people to get a better education, learn new skills to earn a living wage, or start a business. Technology can also enable organizations to meet community needs by broadening access to healthcare, education, microfinance, and other services.
In the hands of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), information technology can improve productivity, increase overall effectiveness through better collaboration, and extend services to new communities in need. Moreover, technology can be a powerful force that opens exciting opportunities for nonprofits to better achieve their missions and accelerate their impact.
Microsoft is committed to helping NGOs unleash technology to advance social and economic development. Our strategy is built around ensuring NGO access to stable and more secure technology, optimizing the delivery of IT solutions, and helping them transform their operations through the innovative and appropriate use of technology. This approach enables us to offer a comprehensive set of services, products, and tools that are relevant to NGOs and their communities.
Disaster & Humanitarian Response
At Microsoft, we are driven by our passion to make a difference in people's everyday lives. Supporting humanitarian relief and disaster management efforts is core to our commitment to develop technology solutions, tools, and practices that can foster social and economic change.
Through partnerships with leading nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), international humanitarian organizations, and government organizations, Microsoft finds innovative ways to lend its expertise and familiar technology to help make communities more resilient in disaster prevention, preparedness, response, and recovery.