SDG16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

SDG16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Why it matters

SDG 16 calls for the promotion of peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provision of access to justice for all and the building of effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels. Progress on SDG 16 has been impeded by the persistence of ongoing and emerging violent conflicts around the world. As of May 2022, a quarter of humanity lived in areas of confict, resulting in the displacement of over 100 million people. This figure is more than double what it was a decade ago. [62]

The industry’s contribution

Mobile technology contributes to SDG 16 by facilitating access to information and the right to free expression. Additionally, digital identity leverages mobile as a trusted and robust solution for the underserved. Together, these lead to greater social and economic inclusion and make individuals more visible to their governments, helping them to benefit from social cash transfer programmes and other government benefits.

Governments, especially in countries with low ID penetration, are making reforms and investments in their identity infrastructure a priority, including birth registration. There are ID systems using digital technologies in 161 countries. As of early 2021, 13% of countries that had implemented SIM registration allowed mobile network providers to verify customers’ identification credentials against an approved government database or credential to facilitate validation.[63]

SDG 16 mobile impact score

No Data Found

Source: GSMA Intelligence

Maximising mobile’s impact by 2030

Lowering ID barriers to register SIM card users, especially for vulnerable populations, is crucial to maximising mobile’s contribution to SDG 16. More generally, taking steps to reduce the barriers to mobile phone ownership (e.g. the cost of a handsets) will help more vulnerable people access the benefits of mobile.

Case Studies

Case Study

STC empowers NGOs through its technical enablement programme


NGOs play a vital role in society by empowering vulnerable populations and contributing to positive change through their expertise, resources and advocacy efforts. They act as a crucial link between marginalised people, governments and other stakeholders. However, a lack of access to digital tools and resources limits NGOs’ ability to optimise their operations and cut cost while maximising their sustainable and social impact.


In July 2021, STC launched its technical enablement programme as part of its commitment to enriching lives, enhancing experiences and expanding digital opportunities. The primary objective of the programme is to empower NGOs by digitising their administrative, financial and operational workflows, which are typically costly endeavours. In total, STC’s technical enablement programme provides 11 main digital solutions to NGOs.


Since the programme's launch, it has successfully served 546 NGOs, delivering 1,487 solutions across 56 main cities in Saudi Arabia, with over 35,000 beneficiaries. It has helped to increase the operational efficiency of NGOs and enable them to implement digital solutions without incurring any financial cost. The technical enablement program exemplifies how technology can be harnessed to address global challenges and support the achievement of the SDGs.

stc Group recognises the responsibility we carry towards local and regional communities and the importance of incorporating sustainability and innovation in everything we do. Sustainability sits at the core of our operations. This has been evident in our commitment to the UN SDG Goals where we’ve identified nine SDGs that we see as priorities for our business due to their relevance to our community, geography and strategy. Our sustainability ambitions are aligned with global best practices, and we are dedicated to creating a positive and lasting impact on the environment, society and economy, while driving the Kingdom’s position as a digital hub in the MENA region.
Olayan Mohammed Alwetaid, CEO, STC