Panellist @ United Nations Internet Governance Forum
Internet governance was one of the most controversial issues at the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) and at the subsequent WSIS+10 review by the General Assembly in the wake of the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in 2015. Cognizant of the fact that any Internet governance approach should be inclusive and responsive, the WSIS mandated the Secretary-General of the United Nations to convene the Global Internet Governance Forum (IGF) for multistakeholder policy dialogue. The convening of the IGF was announced by the Secretary-General of the United Nations on 18 July 2006.
As a platform for discussions, the IGF brings various people and stakeholder groups to the table as equals to exchange information and share good policies and practices relating to the Internet and technologies. While the IGF may not have decision-making mandates, it informs and inspires those who do. It facilitates common understandings and knowledge exchange of how to maximize Internet opportunities and address risks and challenges.
The IGF also gives stakeholders from all countries, including developing countries, the opportunity to engage in the debate on Internet governance and it contributes to capacity building, allowing these stakeholders to build knowledge and skills that will facilitate their participation in existing Internet governance institutions and arrangements. Ultimately the involvement of all stakeholders, from developed as well as developing countries, from governments to international organisations, from the private sector to the civil society, is necessary for advancing dynamic public policies in Internet governance.
According to the International Telecommunications Union, almost 50% of the world's population does not have permanent access to the Internet. This problem does not only concern developing countries but also developed ones. A large part of people are not fully aware of the technological changes taking place, and key technical issues such as artificial intelligence, 5G or the computer cloud are a mystery to them.
Without equal access to knowledge and appropriate qualifications for the whole society, we shall not succeed in building the society and economy of the future. During this debate, together with a wide range of experts, we want to consider what tools and cooperation mechanisms we should create to build a future accessible to all.
Present insights on diversity, inclusion and belonging as a D&I Ambassador within my Directorate within the UK Government. Also presenting my personal experiences of being neurodiverse, being from a low socio-economic background and having three unseen disabilities.