The Bhutan government is persistently working towards increasing the penetration of social media in the country for communication and governance. To achieve this, the Department of Information and Media (DOIM), under Ministry of Information and Communication of the Bhutan government, has formed a partnership with DEF to conduct regular short training programmes in Bhutan and India for the officials of DOIM and other ministries. So far, DEF has conducted four ‘Social Media Trainings for Governance and Development’ — two in Thimphu (Bhutan) and two in New Delhi (India). The latest training was held in New Delhi from September 25-28, 2017.
It was attended by three senior officials from DOIM — Monira Ay Tsewang, Yangchen Lhamo and Rikudhanmr Subba. The four-day hands-on training covered the basics of Facebook and Twitter; digital content and creation through storytelling; digital citizenship and rights; privacy and digital security; mobile phones for creating audio visual content for social media; crowdsourcing and crowdfunding; social media for governance; monitoring and tracking social media; and social media trends and best practices. DOIM is keen on increasing the penetration of social media in the rural parts of Bhutan to make communication and interaction of rural folks and the local administration efficient and effective. DOIM also intends to launch a number of social media campaigns in the near future to address rising social concerns, such as drug abuse and waste management, in Bhutan. Bhutan has set itself on digital trajectory, and DEF is determined to add value to help it build a digital ecosystem that facilitates maximum impact. These trainings are conducted under the DEF initiative Social Media for Empowerment.