Over half of the world’s population don’t have access to knowledge and information because it’s not available in their language.
This language gap prevents people from accessing information to help lift them out of poverty, get health care, recover from a crisis, or understand their rights.
It also contributes to a global communication power imbalance. Governments, humanitarian organizations, and other information gatekeepers typically do not engage in a global dialogue, they only share information from the top down. Sometimes they do not have the tools to publish and distribute information in marginalized languages. And people who speak these languages are not able to proactively share their needs, concerns, or ideas.
We are working to flip this power dynamic with Gamayun, the language equality initiative. Gamayun uses advanced language technology to increase language equality and improve two-way communication in marginalized languages. The ultimate goal is to shift control of communication, allowing everyone to share their voice and access information in the language and format they understand.
The initiative first focuses on gathering text and speech data that can make it easier to automate marginalized languages. Using this data, we can build advanced technology-driven solutions for both text- and voice-based communication. This cross-industry effort brings together technologists, native speaker communities, humanitarian organizations, content creators, and donors to fund investment in language data and technology, making it useful and accessible for all.
Over the next five years, our goal is to bring 10 marginalized languages online, creating a sustainable model to empower people through greater access to critical information and two-way communication, in their own language. Join us.
To learn more about Gamayun, or to support the initiative through funding, language data, or technology, please contact Sylvia Kaawe, Special Projects Program Coordinator, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Key supporters and partners include:
Read the latest updates on Gamayun
News: TWB’s language equality initiative selected as finalist in the Humanitarian Grand Challenge (HGC)
Blog: Conversations with chatbots: helping people in the DRC access multilingual COVID-19 information
News: TWB and KoBo Inc develop speech recognition technology to capture voices of speakers of marginalized languages
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