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  • 2015 Corporate Responsibility Report
2015 Corporate Responsibility Report

Digital responsibility

Digitization is changing our lives – how we communicate, how we stay informed, how we learn. In a digitized world media skills are indispensable when it comes to getting involved in society, which is why we work to teach people how to competently and safely use new technologies. Our numerous projects and initiatives in Germany and Europe are targeted at children and young people as well as adults and seniors.



  • Promoting media literacy
  • Enabling access to digital technologies



  • Social Commitment KPI
  • Network coverage status

All around the world, having access to modern information technologies is the basis of being able to participate in the knowledge and information society, which is why we are creating the necessary technical infrastructure and reducing the financial hurdles that prevent its use. We also help people learn how to actively and competently use new technologies, conducting custom projects for various target groups. ICT img can also be used to address social challenges. We develop our own offers and support partner initiatives with our expertise in this area.

  • Promoting media literacy: Our Teachtoday initiative provides children, young people, families and teachers with extensive practical, hands-on materials and formats for teaching children how to use media safely and competently. We also address people that have rarely or never worked with modern information technology through a variety of offers: Our employees, for example, organize courses on how to use cell phones and the internet for residents of Lebenshife facilities within the context of our Social Days. Another good example for this is the Access to the Digital World initiative supported by OTE and COSMOTE, where people over the age of 50 with no computer experience can learn the basics of using digital technology. Another key focal point of our involvement is promoting online security. Our online advice portal, www.sicherdigital.de, for example, gives people free security advice designed especially for their age group. Our free data privacy advice portal also offers advice on data privacy and security.
  • Enabling access: We offer schools throughout Germany free broadband access as part of our Telekom@School initiative. This gives children and young people the opportunity to learn how to use digital media irrespective of their family background. We also offer special rates to enable low-income customers and people with disabilities to make phone calls and surf the web at reasonable prices. More than one million customers in Germany take advantage of these special rates each year. Our national companies also work to make technical infrastructures easier to use. In the scope of Magyar Telekom's "hello holnap!" initiative for example, customers with disabilities are offered special rates and usage options in line with their particular needs.

Teachtoday is our initiative for teaching people how to use media safely and competently. It supports children, young people, parents and grandparents as well as teachers by offering hands-on tips and materials - online and at face-to-face events. In 2015 our media obstacle course took to the German roads: Awareness was raised for safe media usage in a playful manner among over 4,900 school students between the ages of 9 and 12 in 42 institutions in eleven different federal states. More than 150 children discussed topics involving the digital world at the Summit for Kids in November 2015. We documented their ideas in an interactive manifesto. The highlight of the event was the award ceremony of the "Media, sure! But secure." competition. For the first time, international submissions were accepted and projects from five countries took part. The jury presented awards to seven projects including the joint media project on refugee migration from Syria called “Homeland!?”, which was submitted by the Martin Luther King School in Saarlouis, Germany. In 2015, we also created a new media magazine for children called "Scroller," which is supplemented by an advice portal for parents and notes for teachers. The portals teachtoday and scroller are available in English as well as German.

Deutsche Telekom was involved in different projects and initiatives for digital education and improved online safety during the reporting period.

Involvement with „Deutschland sicher im Netz“ (DsiN)
We expanded our involvement with the “Deutschland sicher im Netz” (DsiN) association during the reporting period. Thomas Kremer, Deutsche Telekom Board Member for Data Privacy, Legal Affairs and Compliance, became chairman of the board at DsiN in November. We are also a partner company of the myDigitalWorld competition; the youth competition for improved online safety entered its second round in October 2015. Birgit Klesper, Senior Vice President Group Transformational Change & Corporate Responsibility at Deutsche Telekom, is a member of the jury that will select the best submissions in summer 2016. Deutsche Telekom also became a partner of the new Digital Neighborhood project in November 2015. With the project, DsiN is planning to create a Germany-wide network of IT experts from associations and non-profit organizations to pass on their knowledge of IT safety issues to people in their personal environment.

DsiN was created as part of the 1st National IT Summit nine years ago under the patronage of the Federal Ministry of the Interior. The association is a point of contact for consumers and companies and provides specific advice to raise security awareness when using the Internet.

Pilot project for voluntary social/digital work in Saxony-Anhalt
The pilot project promoting a year of voluntary social/digital work was launched in the city of Halle in October 2015. The new offers for promoting media skills involved in the pilot project extend the current concept of a voluntary social work year: Under the program, young people between the ages of 16 and 26 with an interest in modern media can work on digital projects or help people learn how to use new media at non-profit organizations, such as facilities for seniors and people with disabilities, day-care centers and clinics. The scope of the program, which is initially beind tested at around 25 facilities in Saxony-Anhalt, ranges from digital storytelling to creating accessible web content. Volunteers receive media teaching support during their entire time in the program.

The project, which is scheduled to run two years, is sponsored by the German Ministry of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth, Deutsche Telekom and NrEins.de AG. In addition to the pilot project in Saxony-Anhalt, the ministry is also supports a two-year sponsorship of a pilot project in Rhineland-Palatinate. The objective of the two pilot projects is to produce results that enable institutions offering voluntary social work positions to integrate digital modules into the traditional concept.

Technology can help to overcome social challenges. This is why Deutsche Telekom promoted the following digital initiatives during the reporting period:

  • Deutsche Telekom supports International Mapping Day campaign
    To celebrate the “International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2015”, the non-profit organization “Sozialhelden” collaborated with the World Health Organization (WHO) and ITU (International Telecommunication Union) to initiate the International Mapping Day campaign. The aim was to add even more locations with wheelchair accessibility to the Wheelmap.org online map. Deutsche Telekom called upon its employees, customers and other interested people to participate in the campaign.
  • IRMGARD app helps adults learn to read and write in German
    IRMGARD is the first app in Germany designed to help adults learn to read and write in German. The only other apps so far are designed for children and not very suitable for use by adults. IRMGARD particularly focuses on the specific needs of adults,: users are, for example, addressed and motivated by a real person on an equal footing. Deutsche Telekom co-financed the IRMGARD app and asked people to volunteer their time to promote use of the app.

In June 2015, COSMOTE launched a new program for the optimal and safe use of today’s technology by children called “Child and Safety in Technology”. In this framework, the company also launched an online platform website and a leaflet providing relevant information to parents who can now learn how to make this technology more functional and safe through the use of specialized products and services. One of them is the new COSMOTE SMILE service designed especially for smartphones and tablets, which ensures a child can only operate specific phone numbers selected by the parents for incoming and outgoing calls, and only allows access during specified times of day to apps and webpages selected by the parents. COSMOTE SMILE also detects the position of the child's mobile/tablet on a map and notifies parents when the signal leaves the designated boundaries.

Digital Bridge Program
In the 11 years since Magyar Telekom launched its Digital Bridge Program, the inhabitants of small, disadvantaged settlements where few people live have been taught how and what the internet can be used for, and how it can make their life easier. Participants in the program are helped by Magyar Telekom volunteers who provide advice tailored to the inhabitants’ individual needs. 15 events were organized during 2015. Seven were at elementary schools as a summer digital “daycare” for school pupils aged 10-14 and eight were Digital Bridges, including Digital Bridge Festivals (digital education and talent show). During 2015 approx. 1,000 people were reached, and a further 60,000 through the respective Facebook page. The 200th Digital Bridge event was staged in November 2015.

Smart Digital Program
Legislation in Hungary requires every Internet provider to provide free software on its homepage to make protection of underage persons possible. Through its Smart Digital Program Magyar Telekom, however, is doing much more than merely fulfilling its legal obligations since Telekom volunteers have educated tens of thousands of school pupils on how to use the net more safely and consciously. Within the framework of this Smart Digital Program, which evolved from the Digital Bridge Program, Telekom is contributing to the development of a climate of digital maturity and literacy in Hungary. For the fifth year in a row, children were trained in the safe use of online technologies on Safer Internet Day (see below). Within the framework of a residential project in Nyíregyháza (see below) an intensive series of lectures aimed at beginner internet users commenced for adults and seniors. This free course teaches participants what the web can be used for and how it can help them solve everyday problems.

Safer Internet Day
Safer Internet Day is an annual EU initiative accompanied by a wide range of extraordinary net community, school and technology programs. In 2015 Magyar Telekom cooperated with the Digital Knowledge Academy to simultaneously teach 1,000 children from 14 schools in 12 cities on the conscious and safe use of online technologies. Telekom’s volunteers passed on practical skills relating to the opportunities and risks inherent in the use of the net, ways of setting options and filtering content, as well as netiquette. In an interactive lecture during a 45-minute classroom session the speakers addressed basic issues ranging from password protection and filtering risky content to solutions to safeguard users from harassment. All these activities took the specific needs of the age group concerned into account.

Digital Hungary – a residential project in Nyíregyháza
One of Magyar Telekom’s long-term goals has been to spread smart city services in order to improve the living standards of urban inhabitants, and contribute to the creation of a more sustainable urban environment. Digital Hungary, the first comprehensive program for digital communities and the economy, commenced in Nyíregyháza. In the first round, Hungary's government allocated HUF 1.7bn (€ 5.48 Mio.) to the first phase of this Digital Hungary government program in Nyíregyháza. In spring 2015 Magyar Telekom collaborated with the Ministry of National Development and the Municipality of Nyíregyháza to launch a comprehensive development plan in the county capital. Under the auspices of the Digital Nyíregyháza sub-project Magyar Telekom is investing its own resources (close to HUF 0.5bn (€ 1.6 Mio.)) to carry out an intense network development in the city. The work is already underway in several parts of the city, and Magyar Telekom is planning to make at least 30 Mbps available for over 7,000 households in 2016. Many other settlements are scheduled to have new generation and broadband access by the end of 2017.

AjTy (“you too”) Senior, a project launched in 2013 by T-Systems Slovakia in cooperation with the electro-technical secondary school in Košice, provides IT courses for senior citizens. The lessons offered in 2015 focused on working with a PC and the Internet, e.g. what the Internet can be used for, how a mail account can be created, how documents can be written in Word, how to chat online, etc. 2015 was very successful in that 40 seniors were attracted to the two courses in the summer and winter term. 20 volunteers from T-Systems Slovakia taught the seniors all the knowledge and skills required. Improvements were made to the courses, e.g. in ways of communicating with the students, delivering course content after its completion, final tests, etc.

IT Courses for Seniors

For yet another year, COSMOTE supported the Access to the Digital World Program, which aims to reduce PC illiteracy amongst the over-50s and thus enhance their access to the digital world, education and lifelong learning. This initiative offers, free of charge, basic digital skills and Internet usage courses to over-50s with no previous digital experience. Two- and four-hour seminars are held to introduce the participants to the use of touchscreen technology for smartphones and tablets, and online social networking, e.g. Skype, Facebook, etc. From September 2014 to the end of July 2015, Access to the Digital World was held in three municipalities, attended by a total of 765 senior citizens with an average age of 64. Besides financial support, COSMOTE provided all the necessary hardware and technical support.

Since September 2015 Telekom Romania has been running the fourth round of the Coder Dojo Bucharest North Workshops, with over 50 children and youngsters aged 7 to 16 studying programming and computer-assisted electronics based on the Arduino development platform. The workshops are being organized free throughout the 2015-2016 school year and include training sessions for beginner programmers as well as for youngsters who have already gathered experience at the previous years' Dojos and want to upgrade their programming or Arduino skills. The children and young people attending are coordinated by volunteering mentors from the world of business or independent specialists who want to get involved in educating the younger generation. Bucharest North @Telekom Romania, the oldest Dojo of its kind in Romania, has been running for four years with monthly meetings staged at a location where logistical support and Internet connections are provided by Telekom Romania.

CoderDojo, an international movement initiated in Ireland in 2011, aims to offer interested children the chance to learn programming in an informal environment through regular sessions outside normal school hours.

Digital literacy is becoming a basic skill required for participating in any aspect of society. With its Connected Kids project, T-Mobile Austria hopes to raise awareness among students, parents and teachers regarding the numerous ways mobile Internet can be used for learning, and to advance the use of digital media at schools. T-Mobile Austria has been collaborating with Apple since 2013 to provide Austrian classrooms with tablets and mobile Internet hotspots img for 2 weeks at a time. 3,777 students at 37 participating schools and more than 200 teachers have already had the chance to explore digital learning in a connected classroom. Educational and technical support is provided to make sure students get to experience all the advantages of mobile communication in teaching.

T-Mobile launched the Connected Kids blog to make the experience of using digital media in schools and families as part of a connected classroom available to the public.

Long-term project goals include inspiring students to pass on what they learn to people outside of traditional educational institutions.

The e-Macedonia Foundation initiated the e-Classrooms project in 2012 with the aim of offering socially vulnerable people access to information, social interaction and improved educational standards and skills, and thus enhancing their employment prospects. Concurrently, the idea of the e-Macedonia Foundation is to create a comprehensive digital society in which everyone will be able to explore their possibilities and benefit from the new technologies, enjoy a free access, share information and services, and be able to participate more efficiently in their communities.

As in the past, organizations planning to open an e-classroom where the target group would learn for free to use computer programs (Word, Excel etc.) and the Internet, e-mails, etc. applied for funds from the e-Macedonia Foundation in 2015. As a result, the e-Macedonia Foundation provided €8,000 to open two new e-classrooms. The Foundation provides full or partial funds for the opening of every e-classroom as well as technical support through teaching aids, Internet links and fully functioning equipment.

So far, around 400 citizens in the Republic of Macedonia have been received practical further education through this project.

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