Hi friends, it’s Spiffy, back again on Planet Earth with an eye on entrepreneurs making the world a more equitable place! Today I’m excited to cruise around with Sangram Rane, the Program Coordinator for United Nations’ Global Pulse. Are you ready to be inspired?
Spiffy: Welcome to the blog, Sangram! Tell me, what challenge is United Nations’ Global Pulse addressing?
Sangram: Thanks for having me, Spiffy! At United Nations’ Global Pulse, we build innovative sustainable solutions to solve the world’s biggest problems, from poverty, food insecurity, and health to climate change and peace. The aim is to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Spiffy: What motivated you to do it?
Sangram: I always wanted to put my energy into creating a positive impact on the lives of not one, but many, which led to me to work at the UN. Knowing that my everyday efforts are helping someone somewhere on the planet keeps me going.
Spiffy: More power to you! Can you elaborate on how you and the organization are working towards a more equitable world?
Sangram: At UN Global Pulse, we are striving to ensure that nobody is left behind as the world makes a digital leap. Certain populations not having access to the internet, for example, will create a massive digital divide and lead to increased inequities. We are working to address this through our engagement in forums such as the Broadband Commission and Internet Governance forum. We have ongoing projects to tackle this—for example, creating natural language processing for indigenous languages for whom it currently does not exist, which will enable these populations to be a part of the ever-growing digital economy. In short, fight poverty and inequality.
Spiffy: That’s awesome! I want to know about a recent milestone or initiative that you’re proud of, and the impact that it makes.
Sangram: During the pandemic, our team at Global Pulse built a digital twin—a replica model of a UN refugee camp—to simulate potential spread of the virus based on the types of precautionary measures that can be taken. This helps teams on the ground to tackle the spread of COVID-19 in the camps. Similarly, our team also works with the World Health Organisation (WHO) in fighting misinformation and disinformation regarding COVID-19 through social media analysis.
Spiffy: Tell me about a startup or project you’ve worked with that exemplifies the impact you’re striving to make.
Sangram: Sometime back I set up a children's health fund to support an organization of parents, specifically towards muscular dystrophy. The fund raised all of its money through crowdfunding. This type of project creates an impact on multiple levels. Firstly, it raises funds that can be really helpful towards medical treatment; secondly, it creates a strong community that is united in cause; and thirdly it also raises awareness amongst a larger audience.
Spiffy: Is there anything else you would love to tell our audience before we conclude?
Sangram: I would like to highlight three qualities that have stood out to me as being generally very important in life and which I believe can be helpful to everyone in any endeavor that they might want to embark on: empathy, perseverance, and patience.
Spiffy: That’s the perfect note to end on. Thanks for talking to me today, Sangram—it’s been an honor!
Sangram Rane currently works as Programme Coordinator at United Nations - Global Pulse, where he leads on political affairs and strategic engagements. His focus areas include Sustainable Development (SDGs), humanitarian action and peace. Prior to the UN, Sangram has worked for PwC, Siemens, Development Agency East NL, UCP Europe, Embassy of Netherlands to the US and Nedap. He holds a Masters in Management from London School of Economics (LSE) and has completed his Engineering from Saxion University. (First published on the Ladderworks website on February 9, 2022)
© 2022 Ladderworks LLC. Edited by Anushree Nande. Spiffy’s illustration by Shreyas Navare. For the Ladderworks digital curriculum to help K-3 kids advance the UN SDGs, visit Spiffy's Corner here.