ICTA in collaboration with the Department of Census and Statistics, has recognized the necessity of refining the definition of Digital Literacy to align with global standards. This alignment is crucial for fostering a digitally literate nation and addressing pertinent data requirements. To ensure the accuracy of the digital literacy definition and measurement criteria, expert consultations and stakeholder contributions were deemed essential. To facilitate this process, the ICTA has established a consultative committee representing various sectors, including the community, industry, statisticians, academia, and relevant stakeholders.
The committee comprises 13 members and is jointly chaired by Professor Rohan Samarajiva and the Associate Chief Digital Economy Officer of the ICT Agency of Sri Lanka. The committee's mandate includes a critical evaluation of current questions and the development of new questions based on a well-thought-out and broadly consulted multilateral effort.
After assessing various initiatives for measuring digital literacy, the committee decided to refer to the UNESCO Institute for Statistics 2022 Report on Measurement Strategy for SDG Global Indicator 4.4.2 using International Largescale Assessments. This report, grounded in prior work that systematically addressed the challenges of defining and measuring digital literacy, served as the foundation. The working definition of digital literacy adopted from the UNESCO work stream is as follows:
“Digital literacy is the ability to access, manage, understand, integrate, communicate, evaluate and create information safely and appropriately through digital technologies for employment, decent jobs and entrepreneurship. It includes competencies that are variously referred to as computer literacy, ICT literacy, information literacy and media literacy.”
“ඩිජිටල් සාක්ෂරතාවය යනු රැකියා අවස්ථාවන්, ඵලදායී කාර්යයන් සහ ව්යවසායකත්වය සඳහා ඩිජිටල් තාක්ෂණයන් හරහා සුරක්ෂිතව සහ අනුකූල ලෙස තොරතුරු වෙත ප්රවේශ වීමට, තොරතුරු කළමනාකරණය කිරීමට, අවබෝධ කර ගැනීමට, එකලස් කර ගැනීමට, සන්නිවේදනය කිරීමට, ඇගයීමට සහ නිර්මාණය කිරීමට ඇති හැකියාවන් සමූහයයි. පරිගණක සාක්ෂරතාව, තොරතුරු හා සන්නිවේදන තාක්ෂණ සාක්ෂරතාව, තොරතුරු සාක්ෂරතාව සහ මාධ්ය සාක්ෂරතාව ලෙස විවිධ ලෙස හඳුන්වනු ලබන නිපුණතාවයන් එයට ඇතුළත් වේ.”
The digital literacy questions will be integrated into the framework of the annually conducted Labour Force Survey.