Skills.net gets international recognition

 

The Victorian Government’s Skills.net program is a finalist in the world’s largest community information technology awards, the Global Bangemann Challenge.

The statewide community Internet learning and access program is among nine finalists selected from 67 international entrants in the Challenge’s Equal Access to Networking category.

A jury of 28 information-technology specialists from 20 countries had judged Skills.net as one of the best of its kind in the world.

The winners will be announced in Stockholm on June 9.

More than 700 international entries were entered in 11 categories for the Challenge, including electronic commerce and information technology in education.

The Minister for Information Technology and Multimedia, Alan Stockdale, said: "Skills.net was chosen as a finalist for its success in helping more than 18,000 Victorians learn to understand and use the Internet, particularly those who might not otherwise have access.

"These have included general programs as well as targeted projects for groups such as farmers, young unemployed, the elderly, disabled, and women living in regional and isolated parts of the state."

Multimedia Victoria funds Skills.net and the State Library Service Provider VICNET, co-ordinates it. It has provided almost 100,000 hours and 57,000 training hours on more than 2000 computers since its inception.

The Global Bangemann Challenge was inspired by European Union Commissioner, Martin Bangemann, who co-authored the 1994 blueprint for the European Union’s move in the Information Age, The Bangemann Report.

For more information on Skills.net and the Global Bangemann Challenge, visit their sites on the Internet.

(News Release, Office of the Minister for Information Technology and Multimedia, May 27, 1999)