India launches global repository of Digital Public Infrastructure

The Indian government on Friday launched the Global Digital Public Infrastructure Repository (GDPIR) to bring together resources and learnings from G20 members to design and build Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI). 

“Its primary aim is to bridge the knowledge gap in the choices and methodologies required for the design, construction, deployment, and governance of DPIs. The GDPIR showcases the information in a standardized format from countries and organizations that have developed DPIs at scale, incorporating elements such as maturity scales, source codes (where available), and governance frameworks,” said a press note released by the government.

Currently, the GDPIR collates codes and best practices from 54 DPIs from 16 countries. With 12 projects, India is the largest contributor to GDPIR, followed by nine projects by Oman and five by France. It provides resources under several categories, including identity, agriculture, payment, data exchange, health, and education. 

Fund to accelerate DPI implementation

GDPIR has been developed by India’s Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY). The country’s Prime Minister, Narendra Modi, announced the launch of GDPIR at the Virtual G20 Leaders’ Summit earlier this week. 

The event also marked the launch of the Social Impact Fund (SIF), a “Government-led multistakeholder initiative to fast-track DPI implementation in the global south.” India has committed $25 million to this fund, which will offer financial support to countries in developing DPI systems. 

India’s growing tech prowess

India has successfully deployed projects such as Aadhaar, a mammoth digital identity project, and Unified Payments Interface (UPI), which allows real-time money transfer to bank accounts using smartphones, at scale. These two initiatives have played a crucial role in the development of the country’s digital ecosystem. For instance, UPI recorded 11 billion transactions in the country in October 2023. 

“India has two great implementations, Aadhaar and UPI, on a scale that no single country has done. At least not by a country that is a democracy. This makes India’s credentials very strong in the global arena where the country can help others deploy these critical elements,” said Faisal Kawoosa, chief analyst at Techarc.

Earlier this year, the G20 block on Digital Economy developed a framework for Systems of DPI. It comprised three elements: technology that is interoperable and reusable, a governance framework to establish rules of engagement, and community to enable value creation. 

The GDPIR initiative allows the sharing of successful local projects that might have universal appeal. “While digital technologies may have very localized use cases and approaches, they do have universal application and design,” Kawoosa said. 

“Its [GDPIRs] essence lies in facilitating the exchange of data and best practices among member countries. This initiative can help the guest members and other nations learn and collaborate, nurturing the growth of tailored infrastructures for their pivotal sectors, ensuring a collective stride towards global prosperity,” said Thomas George, president of CyberMedia Research. 

The sharing of digital resources and codes will help India grow its profile as a digital leader. “For India, this means evolving as an infrastructure provider in a digital economy world. This also helps India to carve out a strategic and differentiative positioning compared to other nations who are, say, strong in hardware like China,” Kawoosa said. 

Copyright © 2023 IDG Communications, Inc.


This website uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you accept our use of cookies.