An Ivorian technology entrepreneur and smartphone designer has won the World Literacy Award 2023.

The award “recognizes individuals and organizations annually for their outstanding endeavours that promote literacy learning,” according to the website for the prize. 

Alain Capo invented a smartphone that lets people communicate in at least 16 of the languages spoken in Ivory Coast.

Last year, he told the Reuters news agency that he had made the phone so that people who cannot read and write were able to use smartphones.

Speaking at the ceremony at Oxford University in the UK, Mr. Capo said he felt honoured: “It’s an amazing honour to receive this award and the global acknowledgment of the work in literacy as we increase access to education and literacy for all.”

He also spoke about what drives him: “I’ve seen, first-hand, the inequalities of education worldwide, and it inspired me to step up and make a difference.”


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