On behalf of the Secretary-General of the United Nations, I have the pleasure to invite you to the 2016 Internet Governance Forum (IGF): ‘Enabling Inclusive and Sustainable Growth’, to be held from 6 to 9 December 2016, in Guadalajara, Mexico.
The 2016 IGF marks the first IGF following its 10-year mandate renewal by the General Assembly at the WSIS+10 High Level Event last year. The overall programme is being built in a bottom-up manner in consultation with the growing IGF community, supported by multi-stakeholder intersessional activities, with a view to enhancing wide-ranging and diverse multistakeholder participation, including stakeholders from developing countries, youth, newcomers to the IGF and those joining online.
The four-day 11th IGF meeting will feature interactive dialogue and debate and will address a broad range of themes and issues including, but not limited to: Internet and Sustainable Development; Access and Diversity; Youth and Gender Issues; Human Rights and Freedom of Expression Online; Cybersecurity; Multistakeholder Cooperation; Critical Internet Resources; Internet Governance Capacity Building and Emerging Issues.
I would also like to take this opportunity to invite all stakeholders to join the growing IGF community intersessional activities. These activities, including IGF Best Practice Forums (BPFs), work on the Connecting and Enabling the Next Billion(s) initiative and IGF Dynamic Coalitions, offer unique multi-stakeholder platforms for substantive collaboration on a wide array of Internet governance themes and issues. This community work will be showcased, and open for further consultation, at the annual meeting in Mexico.
Many of the growing number of National and Regional IGF Initiatives (NRIs) will be holding meetings as well between now and the annual global IGF meeting and all stakeholders are encouraged to join these important meetings. The IGF is working together with the NRIs to enhance linkages and leverage the synergies among them and with the IGF.
The 11th IGF will also aim to enhance linkages among discussions, recommendations and policy options from other relevant Internet Governance discussion fora and institutions. Furthermore, Governments, UN organizations, NRIs and other relevant Internet governance organizations and stakeholders are encouraged to take forward key ideas raised within the IGF.
As underlined in the Tunis Agenda (2005), the IGF is a multistakeholder, inclusive and transparent forum, which facilitates discussions on public policy issues related to Internet governance. The IGF is convened by the United Nations Secretary-General and as such welcomes all stakeholders in the Internet ecosystem, including all entities accredited by the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), as well as other institutions and individuals with relevant expertise, experience and interest.
Let us aim for another productive event for the IGF in Mexico, in enriching policy dialogue for the Internet to advance the Tunis Agenda and the WSIS+10 mandates.
Lastly, I would like to take this opportunity to extend my sincere gratitude to the Government of Mexico for hosting the eleventh annual meeting of the IGF.
The IGF looks forward to seeing and hearing from all of you in December, either in person or remotely.
Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs