The 16th annual IGF meeting will be hosted by the Government of Poland in Katowice from 6-10 December, under the overarching theme: Internet United.
The Preparatory and Engagement Phase is more than an introduction to this year’s IGF. It aims to engage people in IGF discussions and identify synergies between different activities to facilitate cooperation.
The pre-programme contains several session types, depending on facilitators and modes of organization.
The IGF Secretariat, supported by generous contributions from its donors, supports community-centred processes in developing Internet governance capacity.
A number of activities focus particularly on developing countries. These range from: substantive support to community engagement in Internet governance, financial support given through grants to national and regional IGF initiatives (NRIs) to strengthen their IGF-like processes, to individual stakeholders enabling them to take active in-person participation in annual IGF meeting, and youth engagement and newcomers to the IGF support.
Why developing capacity?
Developing capacity across the multistakeholder spectrum is one of the key mandated objectives of the Internet Governance Forum. The Tunis Agenda for the Information Society mandates the Forum, amongst other matters, to:
» Contribute to capacity building for Internet governance in developing countries, drawing fully on local sources of knowledge and expertise. »
The Commission on Science and Technology for Development’s (CSTD) Working Group on Improvements to the IGF recommended that it should support the participation of stakeholders from developing countries, in particular, the least developed countries (LDCs). Also, the community expressed the need for the IGF to invest efforts to balance the participation of stakeholders from developing countries compared to those coming from developed countries, during the IGF Retreat for advancing the Forum’s 10-year mandate.