Cisco’s Francine Katsoudas Leads Efforts to Bridge Digital Divide

Cisco's EVP and Chief People, Policy, and Purpose Officer, Francine Katsoudas, is on a mission to address the digital divide by ensuring equitable access to digital technology. The company's Country Digital Acceleration (CDA) program, spearheaded by Katsoudas, collaborates with business and government leaders to drive national digital agendas and provide innovative technology solutions for local communities. With a focus on digital inclusion, the program aims to make advancements in education, critical infrastructure, sustainability, and healthcare, aligning with Cisco's overarching goal of positively impacting lives.

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He emphasizes the evolving concept of digital inclusion, stressing the importance of ensuring everyone has equal access to essential amenities in the digital era. The CDA program's success stories include reducing cancer treatment time from seven weeks to seven days through improved data connectivity. Additionally, Cisco's Networking Academy training initiatives have empowered individuals globally, with 95% of students securing jobs or pursuing further education opportunities. As it continues to address challenges in achieving digital inclusion, Katsoudas underscores the intersection of sustainability and AI as a significant focus moving forward, emphasizing that purpose should be embedded in every aspect of the company's business.

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