You are here

Open Consultations - Morning Session - February 2012

Internet Governance Forum
Open Consultations
Geneva, Palais des Nations
14 February 2012
Morning Session
10:00 a.m.

>>CHENGETAI MASANGO:  Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.  We're about to start.  Could you please take your seats.
Good morning.  We're about to start.  Can you please take your seats.  Thank you.
[ Gavel ]
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO:  Can we have somebody from the room?  Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.  Welcome to the first open consultations for the IGF 2012 meeting.
I would like to introduce you to Mr. Vyatcheslav Cherkasov from UNDESA, who is going to say a few words first before handing it over to the chair.
>>UNDESA: Okay.  Thank you very much.  Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.  My name is Vyatcheslav Cherkasov.  I am from the Division of Public Administration, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, DESA.
From the outset, let me extend you warm regard and appreciation from the Under-Secretary-General, the head of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Mr. Sha, and the director of the division of public administration for UNDESA, Madam Chen, for your appreciation and the dedication of your time, efforts, and commitment to the IGF movement.
DESA would like to reaffirm its strong commitment to the key principle of the multistakeholder platform of the IGF movement, and consider that this approach allows the various stakeholders of the international community from the government, private sector, nongovernmental organizations, institutions, training centers, academia, to participate in the open and transparent discussion on the current and the future development of the IGF.
Last year, with your support, with your participation and sharing of the experience and the knowledge, the main theme and the main topics of the IGF 2011 was discussed, and your contribution to the success of this event in 2011 is very much impressive.
Actually, so taking into consideration the needs and based on your expertise, it was the first time when the development agenda was included into the directions of the discussion and implementation of the IGF forum in Nairobi.
It was the unique opportunity for the participants not only to participate in the main political discussions on the role of the Internet governance, but as well, to be able to contribute and to be able to share their experience as well as to learn about the lessons and the expertise of the other countries and the participants, which was an important contribution to the capacity-building development.
Which leads to the success of the IGF 2011.
As you might know, so that it was over 2,000 participants participated in Nairobi, and around a thousand remote participants also was involved in the discussion and various types of events of this forum.
Of course also we would like to appreciate the strong commitment and dedication of people of Kenya, the government, the respective ministries, the various types of offices, organizations, civil societies, and the private sector who contributed to the success of this event, and as well as the chair of the IGF Kenya 2011, Alice Munyua.  She is here and I would like to acknowledge that.
[ Applause ]
>>UNDESA:  We extend our applause to her.  Because, you know, that you see her.  She's not only a beautiful and pretty lady but she is also a very strong and dedicated manager and leader, and with various solid academic and managerial backgrounds.
At the same time, in Kenya, you know that the 2012 IGF will take place in Baku, and today I am very pleased to announce that we have an official delegation from Azerbaijan and the delegation is headed by the Deputy Minister of the Minister of Communication and Information Technology, the chairman of the 2012 Internet Governance Forum, and as well as the chair of this meeting, Mr. Valizada.  So that I would just have my pleasure to give the floor to him for the continuation of our meeting.  Thank you very much for your attention.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Good morning, ladies and gentlemen.  Welcome to the wintry conditions in Geneva but more importantly to the first open consultation meeting in this preparation process for IGF 2012, which will be held in Baku, Azerbaijan.
It is a great honor for me to chair this meeting, and I hope that we will make great progress in shaping the structure of the IGF meeting in Baku and the issues it should deal with.
As with all IGF meetings, we have remote participants and captioning.  The working language of this meeting is English.  I am pleased that the IGF countries champion remote participation in its meetings.
Our agenda for today is full, and I hope that you can readily agree to the proposed agenda.  I am hoping for a wide-ranging discussions and the stakeholders are -- (audio skipping) --  the debate.
It has to be our priority to shape a varied agenda for the IGF meeting in Baku that will be attractive to all stakeholders and continue to ensure that the IGF meeting addresses the key challenges that face all Internet stakeholders in today's world.
The discussions today will inform the MAG meeting that takes place over these next two days.
As you know, this is an open meeting and it is also the last meeting of MAG with its current membership.
On behalf of the Internet community, I would like to thank the members of the MAG -- (audio is skipping) -- for the last few years.
Other comments on the agenda?
If not, I will -- if you have any comments to the agenda, you can say about this one.
If not, I will proceed to ask the IGF Secretariat to highlight some of the general observations in the contributions.
Please, have you some comments to the agenda?
Thanks.  I think no suggestion to our agenda.  I ask the Secretariat some highlights, some observations, please.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO:  Thank you very much, chair -- (audio is skipping) -- 2011 was the most successful IGF we've had.  It was also the most complex.  We had over 2,000 participants, 125 governments, 68 media people, 122 workshops and other events.
We also had 47 remote hubs, of which 823 people took part in it.  We had 38 remote panelists, and over the course of the week, we had 2,500 connections coming in for remote participants in from over 89 countries.
And with all this complexity and -- this could not have been done without the help, first of all, of the IGF community and as the IGF -- (audio is skipping) --
[Audio lost]
>> -- set a dynamic stage for discussions building on the earlier IGFs hosted in Vilnius, Sharm El Sheikh, Hyderabad, Rio de Janeiro, and Athens.  The 2,000 plus registrations and strong business presence meant the participation this year was the best ever.
This demonstrates the importance of the IGF for all stakeholders -- business, civil society, and academic/technical community, governments and IGOs.  Once again the -- (audio is skipping) -- interested in the Internet governance and provided a unique opportunity to have frank and open discussions on a wide range of issues.
Like its predecessors, the IGF 2011 brought together many stakeholders and experts from a variety of disciplines and areas of responsibility -- (audio is skipping) -- best practices -- (audio is skipping) -- as they relate to respective situations that in turn resonate -- (audio is skipping) -- decisions around the world and at National and regional levels.
Participation by -- (audio is skipping) --
[Please stand by]
-- remote participation and Internet governance and development issues continue to be a key theme in many sessions as well as in a main session and we think this should continue.
Thank you for allowing me to make this initial contribution.  We look forward to contributing throughout the day.  Thank you, chair.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  We'll continue our discussions.  Please.  Okay.  I think more additional comments.  Ah.  Please.
>>IZUMI AIZU: Thank you, chair.  My name is Izumi Aizu.  I'm from the civil society Internet Governance Caucus and one of the two coordinators or co-coordinators -- (audio is skipping) -- formal statement per se, it's more personal remarks but I think it is important to address this issue at the onset of this meeting.
I'm also a member of the CSTD working group on the IGF improvements.
So first, we are very encouraged to see many of our friends in this room as well as those who participate -- (audio is skipping) --
[Please stand by]
-- are often suffering from lack of proper funding, and therefore, we don't see them here in this room today.
So we also would like to acknowledge various very kind donors who have provided great financial and in-kind support so far and we'd like to really work together in the future.
So we understand this is our job, but we hope that this is our mutual job with you to find some mutual solutions.  We'd really like to see this to get to the second round of IGF to have more enhanced multistakeholder participation.  At the beginning, I'd like to just remark this for the record.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you for your comments.
Other comments, please.  Yeah, please.
>>ICANN: Thank you, Chairman.  My name is Baher Esmat.  I work for the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, ICANN.  ICANN would like to congratulate the government of Kenya and the IGF Secretariat for organizing such a successful IGF meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, with more than 2,000 participants, the sixth IGF meeting in Nairobi has hit a record not only in terms of the number of participants, but also in terms of participation from developing countries which seems to have exceeded 60%.
With an overall theme of the Internet as a catalyst for change, access, development, freedoms, and innovation, the IGF in 2011 has built on the momentum of previous IGFs in deepening the discussions in areas that have been explored in the past, while at the same time bringing new topics to the agenda, on recent developments in the Internet sphere.
We look forward to working with the IGF Secretariat and all stakeholders towards another successful IGF meeting that will take place this year in Baku, Azerbaijan.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Can we have other comments, please?
>> Can you hear me?
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah.  Please.
>>FOUAD BAJWA: Thank you so much, Mr. Chair.  I am Fouad Bajwa.  I'm from Pakistan.  I am a civil society member.  
I was part of helping the voluntary group which took forward the IG4D main session and the preparations for helping mainstream development throughout the course of IGF 2011 in Kenya.
First of all, a very strong congratulations to the host country for organizing a very successful IGF.  The second most important thing was that we did see an increase of civil society representatives.  But at the same time, I would like to emphasize that the preparatory process for the IGF is a very important area.  This is where all this effort for including development and addressing development across the IGF was actually proposed and made.
From the open consultations to the MAG process.
What is important over here is, for example, people like me, myself, I can easily -- have been struggling for the past nearly one year to actually make it to Geneva and to help participate in these processes and make valuable contributions.  For us, it is necessary that we work together to somehow address the issue of funding for participants from developing countries.
On the second aspect, if the preparatory process itself is affected by not having civil society members participate, and secondly if civil society members are only backing out on the issue of not having resource availability, that is a very key point of concern.
I must -- I do personally agree that right now the situation all across the world isn't good for -- in terms of economic downturn, but still we have to somehow work out some partnerships or look at these aspects, even the CSTD working group has been raising these issues, so this is a very common point of interest and an important point of interest we would like to carry on in the open consultations as well as for discussions during the MAG meeting.
The third most important thing is that for the first time we were able to address the issue of development in such a broad context in IGF 2011 in Kenya.  A great contribution to the issue of development came from the host country's own continued support and intervention on the issue, and this is something that we would like to definitely see go across to the meeting in 2012 in Baku.
There have also been concerns, as part of the issues of freedom of expression, while issues with regards to the host country.  I don't know how far we can find facts on this, but this is important that we request the host country to assure us of a process where such social, economic, and political discussion happens in a very open format amongst participants, that the security is ensured within this process.  This is a major key concern that we would like to have addressed from the very beginning.  And these are some points which I bring with me from the developing country perspective.
And finally, we would like to see that the host country somehow works out with us to somehow bring in more people from developing countries, and especially around the region of Azerbaijan.  Thank you so much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you for your comments.
Please, I see other participants.  On the right side, please.
>> Thank you very much.  Can you hear me or does it work?  Hello?  Okay.  Very good.  Thank you.  Sorry.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
So we would also like to congratulate Kenya for yet another successful IGF meeting in Nairobi, in a true multistakeholder environment.  And of course we also would like to say thank you very much, Chengetai, for your hard work, and also contributing to the successful Nairobi meeting.
And the IGF by the Nairobi meeting has shown the strength of the self-developing character of the IGF process, due to strong engagement from all of us and many other stakeholders.  That is a very important platform and that is the way we would like to see it further on.
And we would like to say that we also very much would look forward to the upcoming meeting and we will try to do our best to contribute to these days in Geneva.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Please give --
>>NRO: Hello.  My name is Paul Wilson.  I'm speaking on behalf of the NRO, the Number Resource Organization.  The NRO represents the work, the responsibilities and the communities of the regional Internet address registries.
So on behalf of the NRO, I'd like to also congratulate the IGF Secretariat, the Kenyan government, the Multistakeholder Advisory Group, and everyone in fact who participated in the success of the IGF in 2011.
I'm looking forward very much to the next couple of days and the ability to contribute to the planning and the vision for the IGF in 2012.  I'd just like to mention now that the NRO has been a consistent financial contributor to the IGF and a strong supporter since the beginning.
We do support the principle that the IGF should be supported by its stakeholders in accordance with their stake in the IGF, and also their capacity to pay.  We're really absolutely dedicated to the success of the IGF and we've, therefore, decided to increase the contribution that we make to the IGF from around $30,000 a year over the last six years to 75,000 for 2012.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you for your comments.  I see there are other persons on the right side.  Please, I give floor to you.
>>PORTUGAL:   You mean Portugal?  Thank you very much, and good morning.  I would just like to congratulate the Nairobi government and to congratulate all of us that make IGF in Nairobi a very successful one and that IGF is evolving each year and it becomes much better each year.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  The other persons, please.
>>COUNCIL OF EUROPE:  Thank you, Chairman.  (saying name), Council of Europe.  Congratulations to your Kenyan colleagues and friends for hosting a very productive and constructive IGF 2011.  Many thanks also to the IGF Secretariat for facilitating and managing the IGF process.  
For the Council of Europe, the added value of the Internet Governance Forum is clear.  What it brings to us in Strasbourg, it helps us to test, shape and to a certain degree validate our Internet work in progress.  
It enables us to reach out to altogether different communities, people and bodies, that we would not otherwise and/or narrowly engage with through our traditional Council of Europe's structures and networks.  
In Nairobi, we explored together new standards on Internet governance principles and doing no transboundary hunt on the Internet.  We explored cybercrime strategies, mindful of cyber security issues.  We discussed the modernization of Council of Europe data protection rules, and we made progress in finalizing a new draft four-year Council of Europe strategy on Internet governance, which packages together over 40 actions on a range of issues including the drawing up of a compendium of existing human rights for Internet users and improving transparency by collecting and showing data and examples of good practice on laws, regulation, trends related to Internet governance.
This is how it helps the Council of Europe.  Mr. Chair, we believe putting people at the heart of the policy development processes for the Internet is vital in order to improve transparency and decision-making for Internet governance and to strengthen democracies generally.  We see that several member states of the European Union, in particular the U.K., Sweden, the Netherlands and recently Ireland are part of its presidency of the OECD are making Internet freedom, especially freedom of expression on the Internet, a priority.  Mr. Chair, looking ahead and welcoming our host, Azerbaijan, which is a member state for the Council of Europe, committed to the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms.  The Council of Europe Secretariat stands ready to work and assist Azerbaijan in 2012.  
And we echo the comments of others already received who propose the overarching theme for human rights on the Internet.  In this regard, I would propose reference be made to maximizing rights and minimizing restrictions on the Internet.  Thank you very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  I would ask Finland for comment.
>> FINLAND:  Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.  I would like to convey the satisfaction of Finland on the Nairobi IGF.  We think that the broad depth of our discussions and the large number of participants demonstrate that IGF has really -- has really evolved a long way and has begun -- become the main forum for sharing and exchanging ideas from a very broad perspective.
And we would also like to continue supporting the multistakeholder participatory model and all bottom-up organizations of the meetings so that everybody can participate already in the first phase of planning the meetings.
And we also think that in Azerbaijan, it would be important to continue discussing the very broad array of Internet issues and looking at them from different perspectives and, also, ensure that those who are not very familiar with Internet governance issues can get the relevant information from the meetings.
As far as funding for civil society participants, I think this is something that we should perhaps look more in detail in the CSTD working group when we discuss funding issues.  As the funding increases, it is logical that we could find more holistic and systematic ways of supporting civil society participation, especially from developing countries.
So we welcome this suggestion and look forward to continuing working in the CSTD working group as well as in the planning of the IGF meeting in Azerbaijan.  Thank you very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you for your comments.  I ask ISOC, please.
>>ISOC:   Thank you very much, Mr. Chair.  I will be very brief.  The Internet Society would like to congratulate Kenya for being our host last year and also all who participated in the planning and in the successful meeting.
In particular, we would like to acknowledge the technical know-how that enabled the engineering of a stable IPv6 network at the meeting venue.  I'd also like to say at this point that The Internet Society will be increasing its contribution to the Secretariat significantly this year from $10,000 to $50,000.  We wish the very best to Azerbaijan, our hosts in 2012, and wish to reiterate our commitment to the success of the IGF this year and in the future.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  Yes, please.  (saying name).
>> Good morning, Mr. Chairperson.  I wish to thank the Chair for giving me the floor.  My name is (saying name) from the United Nations Economic Commission from Africa.  I wish to thank our colleague from UN-DESA for opening the meeting.  
And we take this opportunity to congratulate the government and people of Kenya for hosting the past IGF which was a good success by all participants.
The IGF allowed Africa to establish the what we call the African Internet Governance Forum, which was put in place by all African stakeholders this year and the African Union Commission.  
And the next meeting of the African IGF is planned to be held in Cairo, Egypt, during the second half of 2012.  In the meantime, we are working stakeholders to organize regional IGFs and also subregional IGFs so we can have meaningful participation in the Azerbaijan IGF.  Thank you, Mr. Chair.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you for your comments.  I see many persons want to suggest comments.  But I ask to pronounce your names very slowly for our scribing here.  Our persons cannot hear your names.  
And I ask Brazil for some comments.
>>BRAZIL:   Thank you, Mr. Chairman.  Everybody's hearing?  Okay.  Thank you very much.
I would like to repeat my colleagues' congratulations to Kenya on organization of the last IGF and to the Chair of the IGF organization related to this meeting.
I would like just to announce that following Finland's representative, regards concerns, Brazil would like to announce that we will sign in the next few weeks an agreement with UNESCO to create in São Paulo a regional center of a Category 2 related to information society in order to put forward an idea that we have presented in the last IGF that is related to training of not only government officers but also civil society to understand and to be able to participate on the IGF discussions and debates and meetings.
I hope this center will allow us to widespread the knowledge -- the needed knowledge that people need to have to participate in this debate because as I have said in the meeting in Nairobi, Brazil's main concern is with -- is broad in the participation, especially from representatives of developing countries.
So I would like to announce it, and I would like to say that we are trying hard to follow European Union's example, but it is not very easy to allocate money from the federal budget to such initiative.  But we are still trying.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  I ask the lady on the left side.
>> NOMINET:  Can you hear me?  As was said, the 2011 IGF in Nairobi was the strongest yet.  And I would like to add our thanks -- Sorry, I should say my name.  I'm Laura Hutchinson from Nominet, the registry for dot UK and the U.K. IGF Secretariat.  
I would like to add to my thanks to the Kenyan hosts and the organizing team and the IGF Secretariat.  In particular, we were pleased to see strong business participation in 2011 Nairobi and also improved participation from developing nations.
The high-level ministerial pre-event gave an interesting angle to the IGF and helped raise awareness.  It also helped to secure parliamentarian engagement throughout the IGF, and we think that this is important to continue in Baku in 2012.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  I ask that (saying name).  No?  Okay.  Please.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO:   It is China first and then the U.K.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Please, China.
>>CHINA:   Thank you, Mr. Chair.  Thank you for giving me the floor.  China would like to join others in expressing our gratitude to the government of Kenya for hosting the 2011 IGF which is very successful and we would also like to congratulate Azerbaijan for hosting the next IGF and we wish it success.
We would like to concur with previous speakers in expressing that continued efforts be made to promote development agenda in IGF.  And, in Nairobi, we have -- make some progress on promoting the development agenda in IGF by including the ICT apportionment into the main sessions, but we think more have to be done in order that Internet can play a very important role in promoting the economic and the social development in developing countries.  We all know it is still a huge and widening gap between developing countries in terms of Internet infrastructure as well as applications on Internet.
So as a global forum, we think that IGF has a mandate to look into the development issues and to make more tangible output on this.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  I give floor to U.K.
>>UNITED KINGDOM:   Thank you very much, Chairman.  My name is Mark Carvell from the U.K. government, Department of Culture, Media and Sport.  
And I'd like to underline the U.K. government's continued support for the Internet Governance Forum.  It has a proven track record.  I would like to echo comments made by colleagues here with regard to the hosting of the Nairobi IGF.  Alice Munyua did a fantastic job and minister, Mr. Poghisio, we very much appreciate his contribution to ensuring that the IGF continues to evolve and the success of the Nairobi IGF, which others have commented on, is quite remarkable in that respect.  And we look forward very much to building on that success with the IGF in Baku and our appreciation to Azerbaijan for hosting the next IGF.
We continue to support the IGF.  We are able to make a contribution of 15,000 pounds this year to the funding of the IGF Secretariat.  And as with the European Commission and other donors, we hope other stakeholders, governments will be able to step forward and contribute as well at this crucial time for the evolution of the IGF.
We're looking for a successor for the post of executive coordinator to be appointed at the earliest opportunity to ensure that the IGF is in good hands with a strong Secretariat and able to continue to address the importance of ensuring that the IGF does reach out to all stakeholders.  And we note very much the concern expressed earlier with regard to civil society participation -- that's fundamentally important -- and also the participation of developing countries and least developed countries.  It is vitally important that this IGF embraces stakeholders, communities across the world.  So very much hope that this issue of facilitating and maximizing participation is addressed.
The record on developing remote participation is very good and, again, great success in Nairobi.  That needs to be built on to ensure that the hubs are made -- that awareness of the hubs is increased so that the ability for people to participate remotely is maximized.  That's a very important objective, I think, for these consultations and the work of the Multistakeholder Advisory Group.
Development -- the development theme of Nairobi, I think, moved forward a lot more, was very impressive.  And I think that should continue to be a principle theme.  Access to the Internet, its contribution to promoting growth and economic opportunity, these are all key issues.  
And we hope very much that the process of setting the agenda and main themes takes full account of that imperative objective of maximizing the opportunities that the Internet affords and overcoming the obstacles to access and opportunity.
And our minister, the Honorable Ed Vaizey, who was in Nairobi, participated in the ministerial forum and stayed on for some of the workshop activities, was particularly impressed by the amount of information that was emerging, the amount of insight into best practice, and sharing expertise that was manifest in the discussions in Nairobi.  
And he does look forward actually to participating in Baku.  And I hope other ministers and senior officials will, likewise, look at the opportunity that the IGF will present in Baku for exploring a lot of policy issues that would not develop coherently without the engagement of business and civil society and technical experts and people involved in the critical infrastructure, like ICANN we heard from earlier.  
So bringing all these experts together in Baku is a supreme opportunity for policymakers, and that's one of the reasons why U.K. government sets great store by the IGF.
One further point, the proliferation of regional and national IGFs, I think, is highly relevant in terms of securing participation.  Maybe there's an angle there with regard to the developing countries, people are not able to make it to the global forum, they have an avenue through national and regional IGFs, and how those fora interact with the global IGF is something that we can usefully look at as well.  
U.K. is very active with the Commonwealth states.  We've got a very important cybercrime initiative getting underway now, which came out of the Commonwealth IGF discussions at the last two (audio dropped) IGFs.  So very important there for that.  
Other fora intersect effectively at the global fora.  I think those are my comments for now.  Thanks very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  Thank you for your comments.
>> (Speaker off microphone).
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Please, microphone.
>> My name is Robert Guerra.  I'm with the Citizen Lab at the University of Toronto in Canada.  I will be making some comments this afternoon on ideas for the 2012 IGF.  I would like to make some short comments on the 2011 IGF.  
I would like to thank both the Kenya host and the Secretariat and the variety of donors that made possible pre-IGF meetings that allowed for both civil society and other stakeholders to get together to strategize, to learn about the IGF and more effectively participate during the meeting.  
There have been numerous comments made, rightfully so, on the level of civil society participation.  It is always a challenge, and it has affected other stakeholders as well.
I believe that funding is available but isn't necessarily as coordinated as it could be and in a way that would make an impact for the IGF.  And we must recall that it is not just participation of the IGF, but it is building the capacity of all stakeholders to talk about issues and then also leverage that at a national and regional level.
So I hear the good efforts in terms of the CSTD working group and others that are working on these issues.  And I would say as part of the MAG conversations as well and others that outreach efforts be made to those that have supported both formal and informal support of civil society at the IGF, both as a caucus but also as activities to address some of the key issues, including freedom of expression and other issues that are key given all the developments over the last year.  Thank you so much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  Please.
>> QUSAI AL-SHATTI:  Thank you, Mr. Chair.  Qusai Al-shatti from Kuwait Information Civil Society.  First, I would like to thank the Kenyan government for hosting such a wonderful event in Nairobi, the sixth IGF.  The meeting really was a good start for the second place of the IGF which we look forward to continue for the next five years.  
I think the discussion on themes and of the organization of the event went well, and we really appreciate the effort on that.  
I would like just to echo the comments that was said by my colleague Robert on the funding of the civil society.  
And we have noticed that the participation of civil society is facing some, let's say, obstacles within the IGF, especially in terms of funding and the ability of different civil society members to participate, especially when the event is in an area that is geographically far from where they exist -- or where they perform or they work.
Therefore, we would like to see in Azerbaijan more CS participation and through more innovative ways of funding for civil society members and representatives to participate there.
I would like also to take this opportunity to announce that in the Arab world, in our region, we are planning to organize an Arab IGF in early October.  An open consultation was held by the end of January and first of February, and that open consultation recommended the launch of the Arab IGF, and that was endorsed by the Executive Bureau of the Communication Ministers of the Arab states and Collective Information Technology Society proposed to host the first Arab IGF in early October 2012.  And we hope that we will see participation in that forum not only from the Arab region but also from the various stakeholders around the world who is interested in the issues related to Internet governance.
Finally, I would like to wish the Azerbaijan Government all the best in organizing the seventh IGF which we look forward that it will become a success and continuation of success of the earlier sixth meeting.  Thank you, Chair.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  Thank you for your comments.  
Any persons?
>> Hello.  Good morning.  I'm (saying name) working for CENTR, which is the European ccTLD organization.  
I would like to join the people that have, well, talked before in congratulating both the host country and the Secretariat for organizing last year's IGF.  I have been participating myself in all IGF meetings since Athens.  And every year surprisingly the IGF is growing.  It has become larger but also becomes better organized and it works smoother.  So congratulations.
Last year, CENTR in cooperation with the other regional organizations -- other ccTLD organizations on the other continents organized, again, a workshop which was -- well, in our view, was one of the most successful ones we ever organized at the IGF.  
For 2012, we already decided that we continue the coordination with the other organizations so we go back to IGF to explain and talk about our business, the DNS -- the ccTLD country codes domain names.  
But more and more, we also feel we need to go to IGF and have more context with other organizations, with other stakeholder groups because it makes no sense for us to go to travel to an international meeting, where we meet with the same people we meet at our own meetings, we meet at ICANN meetings to discuss the same issues.
So for 2012, we are really looking into further cooperation broader than just our own community and looks forward to having discussions in Baku and workshops with other organizations.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Okay.  Thank you.  We spent a lot of time for discussions, but we have persons which want to say some comments.  In here, indicated four and maybe five countries.  And I ask to give to five countries and after, according to our agenda, we have possibility for the discussions of structure of IGF.  And we can have possibilities at your speech in this topic of our agenda.
I maybe ask for four or five persons have comments.  And after we finalize our comments, according to our agenda, we will pass to the other items of our agenda.
I will give the floor to Indonesia, please.
>>INDONESIA:   Thank you, Mr. Chair.  My name is (saying name) from Indonesia.  On behalf of Government of Indonesia, I would like to congratulate the U.N. IGF Secretariat and the host country Kenya who organized the sixth IGF meeting very successfully.
We look forward to support the seventh IGF meeting in Azerbaijan, and hope we will be successful also.  And for the next meeting, I would like to propose the IGF to continue discussing the cloud computing and cybersecurity in the afternoon and also discussing the easy access of Internet as well as facilitation of the multilanguage in the Internet. Thank you very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  I ask Canada, please.
>>CANADA: Thank you very much, Chairman.  I would just like to make some brief remarks.  First of all, to offer our sincere appreciation to the Kenyan government for hosting such a successful Internet Governance Forum last year.
We would note that the increased participation from the region really does, in our view, convey that this forum is well-suited to the purposes of capacity-building, and we are keen to see that continue as the forum continues to evolve over the coming years, and of course this relies upon the full participation of all stakeholders, and certainly civil society are a critical part of that.
And to conclude, we look forward to a successful IGF again this year in Baku, Azerbaijan.  Thank you, Chairman.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  I ask Argentina, please.
>>ARGENTINA:  Mr. Chairman, very briefly, I would like to, as the Argentina representative, thank the Kenyan government and the Kenyan people for organizing such a fantastic and inclusive IGF in Nairobi, and we look forward for the IGF in Azerbaijan.  Argentina will participate and will do our best with our people to be there.
I would like to also comment as a member of the MAG and as an academic, the organization of the fourth South School on Internet governance to be held in Colombia, we expect this year to have around 100 students from all over the Latin American region and some others from Europe as well, and I would like to tell you that this is the fourth time we do this school.
The main purpose is to bring more people from Latin America into the IGF.  We are very few in every meeting for different reasons, and we want to change that.
And I would like to thank the contributors to this school.  Many of them are here today.
Thank you very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  I give floor to Hungary.
>>HUNGARY:  Thank you, Chairman.  I would like to follow up on the comments which have been made and I would like to congratulate Kenya and especially Alice for the excellent work.
I would like to congratulate also Chengetai and the Secretariat.  And last, but not least, UNDESA, my thanks too.
It was a great event and we had great experiences, and now let me change my hat.  I'm the co-coordinator of the Dynamic Coalition on Accessibility and Disability, and we had some experiences on this field as well, and we'd like to share with you, Mr. Chairman, our experiences in the organizing the event in Baku in 2012, and probably we will have an opportunity to talk about organization issues for people with disabilities.  Which, in fact, is one-seventh of the world population.
Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Okay.  Thank you for your comments.
And unfortunately I must ask our last speaker for their comment.  Please, Egypt.
>>EGYPT:  Thank you, Chairman.  Chairman, like previous speakers, actually, it would be our remit not to reiterate our congratulations and appreciation as the Egyptian government to the Kenyan government and our Kenyan colleagues who made the IGF in 2011 a huge success.
We wish also to recognize the role of the IGF Secretariat, DESA, the MAG as well as the whole IGF community in making such a success.
Mr. Chairman, we wish to note the participation level, particularly from developing and LDCs, which was really impressive in Nairobi.  The overarching theme in Nairobi also was particularly well set and became very relevant and very timely.  This contributed, we believe, to expanding the IGF community through new participants who took part for the first time in an IGF at the Nairobi IGF.
In 2012, such success aspects should continue in Baku, Azerbaijan, building upon what we have learned over the last six years.
Specifically, we think the theme in 2012 should continue to be relevant and reflect developments in a way that continue to reach out to new relevant spheres.
The ministerial meeting in conjunction with the IGF also helped raise awareness about the unique model of the IGF and the process itself, and also it shows the topics of importance at the IGF to the ministers.
Mr. Chairman, the IGF continues to be an inspiring model.  In Egypt, we have joint efforts with our African and Arab colleagues in launching two important regional IGFs, the African IGF and the Arab IGF.  We are grateful for the role entrusted to us as the first host of the African IGF in Cairo in the second half of this year and also add the Secretariat of the Arab IGF which will be hosted in Kuwait in October 2012.
Lastly, Mr. Chairman, we look forward to the seventh IGF in Azerbaijan and look forward to working with colleagues to ensure it's yet another impressive success.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  I want to express my great thanks for all speakers for their comments.  The IGF Secretariat and our steering committee, we will analyze your comments and take consideration for our activity.
And according to our agenda, I want to pass our next point.  This is presentation by the host country delegation, and I ask Azerbaijan delegation for their presentation.
And this presentation, you can find some answers to your questions which are in here.  Please.
>>AZERBAIJAN:  Good afternoon, ladies and gentlemen.  I'll make a small presentation on our hosting of the next seventh IGF, IGF 2012.
Azerbaijan, as we know, as you may be aware of, it's an ancient land of fire.  The population of Azerbaijan is a bit more than 9 million.  The capital of Azerbaijan is Baku.  The time zone is GMT+4 hours.
If you'd like to call to Baku, you can dial the plus 99 and 4.  The local currency is Azerbaijani manats which equal to 1.10 USDs.  The electricity current for touch is 212.  The plug form is the standard European type.
The city, Baku, is situated on the western coast of the Caspian Sea in the southern part of the Absheron Peninsula.  The climate of Absheron Peninsula is moderated well with a hot dry summer and short mild winter, and we are planning to host this event in November.  In November, the temperature is approximately 15, 20 Celsius.  Baku is a place of the different cultures and religions.  The main industrial center in the region.
During the (indiscernible) received in 2003, the president of the republic declared the goal of Azerbaijan is to turn black gold into human gold.
Today, this is becoming as a reality.  According to the ICT indicators accomplished by ITU last year, it shows that Azerbaijan is the fastest growing economy in terms of ICT.  According to the prognosis in next 10 years, income from ICT sector will increase rapidly and surplus revenues from oil and gas sectors.  That's why the government assigned the Minister of Communications and Information Technology to be a focal point for conducting this event.
That's why we can see the IGF as a platform to share our experience and of course we are continuing to learn from other experiences as well.
The Minister of Communication and Information Technologies has great experience in conducting various global and regional events.  The ministry is also coordinator of the implemented strategies and state programs.
And we can see some leading indicators of ICT.  Number of mobile users, number of broadband Internet per 100%, broadcasting of digital TV, number of Internet users per 100%, and other leading indicators.
Okay.  This is the first option of conducting opening and closing venue.
The first option is the Palace of Heydar Aliyev, and this is the inside view of the premise venue, and this is the second option of the opening and closing venue.  This is the Baku Expo Center.
And this is the venues for the main sessions.  The sessions will be held in three points.  These are the next to each other.  The first one is Park Inn Azerbaijan, the second one is Hilton Hotel, Baku, and the third one is Absheron Marriott.
Please don't try to book the hotels now in these premises because we are going to launch a special agreement with cooperative rates for IGF participants for this meeting.
Shuttle for airport arrival and departure will be provided free of charge for IGF participants.  Now we are working on a shuttle schedule from the identified hotels to the venue, but a good number of hotels will be in a safe walking distance from the venue.
As you may be aware of that, we are going to host this year Eurovision as well.  It means that the participants will be more, but as you know, the participants will be more than the IGF participants, and it means that we will have a chance to refresh our great practice again.
And this is the transportation services for the people with limited capability, and these kind of services will be provided, of course, free of charge, of course if we will receive a list of the people with limited capability beforehand.
Our logistic issues.  The first one is the visa, which we are now in the process of consulting with our minister of foreign affairs on the visa issues, but our aim is to make it as easy as possible, but we are -- we also plan to have a line visa help desk open three months before the event.
The major flight connections.  The major flight -- there are major hubs nearby our country.  For example, Istanbul, Moscow, Dubai, Vienna, and Doha.  We also have direct flights from London, Paris, Milan, and et cetera.
About the shipping of the meeting materials, we'll assure assistance for customs clearance again three months before the event.  We can't ask you to plan it earlier.
Regarding the hotels, we have hotels to feed different categories from AT U.S. dollars effort.  This includes guest houses all the way up to five-star hotels.
All between roughly 10, 15 kilometers of the venue, which usually takes 20, 30 minutes.
And I'm ready to answer your questions, if you have.
>> (Speaker is off microphone.)
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Put on your microphone.
>>ROBERT GUERRA: My name is Robert Guerra.  I spoke earlier.  I have a couple of comments in regards to accommodation.  I think the soonest information will be made available on the negotiated rates, both for the high-end hotels but also the guest houses I think would be particularly important.
Many delegations, whether it's business or civil society, travel in large groups and like to have accommodation that brings the group together.
I would say, as I mentioned earlier, at times there are many pre-IGF activities that take place, such as the GigaNet and some civil society meetings, Alan certain spaces would be available ahead of the IGF I think would be particularly important.
In regards to visa issues, I think one of the issues I think that's come up, there are some neighboring countries of Azerbaijan of which there have been challenging visa issues, and I know that's been expedited for Eurovision, and I think making sure that people know what the visa requirements are, whether visa fees will be waived as was the case in Brazil, or in other countries, I think the soonest some countries -- or some delegation have far more visa requirements than others and as soon as that can be done would be most appreciated.  Thank you.
>> (Speaker is off microphone.)
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Microphone, please.
>>AZERBAIJAN: Thank you for your question.  Regarding to the hotel and the visa, I forgot to mention that we'll launch the -- let me say the host country Web site in two, three weeks, and of course we consider the hotel issues and we are going to make a special agreement contract with the hotels, with all hotels, starting from the guesthouse till the five-stars, and they will be cooperative rate for the IGF participants and it will be reflected at IGF host country Web site as well.
And regarding the visa, as you know that for the Eurovision Song Contest, getting the issuing of the visa will be simplified, and now as I mentioned before, we are in the process of consulting with other ministry of the foreign affairs on this issue and we'll do our best to make it as easy as possible.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Okay.  Thank you.  I -- you have a comment?  Please.
>> Thank you, Mr. Chair.  I just want to -- first of all, let me introduce myself.  I am from the permit mission of Azerbaijan to the United Nations here in Geneva.  
In addition to what was said by my colleague, just because I'm the representative of the minister of foreign affairs, I want to emphasize that the visa processing is going to be simplified.  This is an ongoing process now, and there are a few options.  Actually in the past we used to issue to the most simplified version of visa processing at the airport.  I'm not saying it is going to be possible but this is going to be viewed -- this is going to be considered by the minister of foreign affairs.  Whether the participants will be issued right straight from the airport.  But the normal visa process takes five to seven days, normally, and there is -- we don't see any problems with visa processing.
But just for our information, the issue is going to be reviewed and reconsidered again whether we can provide the best simplified solution for the visa processing for the IGF participants.  Thank you, Mr. Chair.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  I want to give the floor to Mrs. Swinehart.  Please.
>>THERESA SWINEHART:  Thank you very much.  Thank you for the very nice presentation and also for hosting this upcoming event.  We appreciate that there's a lot of work and resources that go into that.
I just had a practical question, and perhaps I misunderstood the slides.
Is it the intention to have all the events at the same venue or is the intention to divide them up between three or four different hotels?  And I wasn't sure from the slide.  There were some hotels that were listed as venue locations, so I wasn't clear if we're hosting everything at the conference venue or if it's divided up.  That has some practical implications on the ability to move between workshops.  Thank you.
>>AZERBAIJAN:  Okay.  Thank you for the question.  Regarding the opening and the closing ceremony, as I have already stated, we have the two options.  We'll select one of them, but regarding the main sessions, it will be divided in three hotels which are next to each other, and it is very easy to move from one to another.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Yeah, please.
>> Also just to clarify what the delegate from Azerbaijan said, in the hotels the plan is to have all the workshops done in one hotel, so if you're moving between workshops, it will be fine.  It's all in one hotel.
The main sessions are in the other hotel, and the other events, the forum's in the next-door hotel.  Or if we need -- if need be.  But I think we most probably can put them all into two hotels and have one hotel just for administration, et cetera.
That's the plan as it stands now, and the hotels are right next to each other.  There's no long walk ahead for people, et cetera.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Please.  U.K., please.
>>UNITED KINGDOM:  Thank you very much, chair, and thank you very much for the presentation on the planning for the IGF in Baku.  That's very helpful.  Very good to get confirmation of the dates as well.
Which are provisional in the minister's diary.  And my first question is whether, in fact, there has been a decision taken on whether to hold some kind of ministerial event which we saw work so successfully in Nairobi.
So if there is some information about the thinking with regard to ministerial participation, that would be very useful to have.
Secondly, following on actually a comment from Argentina earlier on the importance of youth participation, the U.K. has been very keen to promote the engagement of youth, young people, in the IGF and I hope the accommodation planning and so on will take account of that.
Thirdly, I'd like to congratulate you on deploying London taxis as part of your transport program.
[ Applause ]
>>UNITED KINGDOM:  I can't recommend them too highly, and that's a good message for our -- what's left of our motor industry.  Thank you very much.
[ Laughter ]
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Okay.  Please answer to the questions.
>>AZERBAIJAN:  Regarding the question, the conduction of the pre-event -- namely, the ministerial meeting -- yes, we are going also to conduct a ministerial meeting before the -- hosting the IGF.  Approximately, roughly, it was the 5th of November.
>>WORLD BROADCASTING UNION: Yes.  Can you hear me?  Yeah.  (saying name) from World Broadcasting Union, and here representing also Eurovision.
In fact, I want to link the two events, the one in May, the Eurovision, where we will have special conditions for visa for TV crews and journalists.  This kind of condition will be also applicable to the IGF event.  This is the first question.
The second question, who will be our partner for the host broadcasting of the IGF event.  It would be (saying name).
>>AZERBAIJAN:  Yes.  We'll do our best to apply all conditions which we are already applied for the Eurovision, we'll do our best to apply these conditions for the IGF.  Let me say the facilities are participants for all.
Regarding your country part, we'll consider.  The discussion is ongoing.  It will also be delivered in a short time.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  ICC, please.  Please, Ayesha.
>>ICC/BASIS:  Thank you very much for the presentation and all of this information about your planning process.
I just have a quick clarification question.  Will it be necessary if we're going from one hotel to the other to go through security each time, just in terms of the flow of the day?  We're often racing around and it's difficult to take the time to go through security, so I'm just wondering if that might be something you can clarify or look into.  Thank you.
>>AZERBAIJAN:  As you know, our country is stable and securitied, but except that please also be informed that there will be, as a rule, the U.N. securities and also the government will provide security staff for the U.N. event premises as well.
Okay.  Again, it depends on U.N. rules and demands.
>> The U.N. team -- U.N. security team has not visited the site yet but we'll keep that in mind.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Please, Pakistan.
>>PAKISTAN:  I am Fouad Bajaw.  I'm from civil society in Pakistan.  A few points of concern.  A very good presentation by Azerbaijan, but at the same time, the question is if we are going to move between multiple venues, it would be a problem for people with special physical needs to move between venues like that.
Second thing, a great amount -- deal of IGF success which I've observed is it depends upon having most of the activities in the same venue, because people do decide at certain occasions to move within the same venue between workshops and main sessions.
Then there's another problem.  If we have multiple venues, there might be a possibility that people will just stick to one site and not move to the other site.
The security issue.  Obviously there's a great deal of what we've observed as U.N. security procedures in place, and continuously having special people move from one venue to the other and getting checked continuously on both or three venues, that would be a concern.
On the visa issues, as I come from a developing country, trust me, there are certain visa issues have to be accommodated in advance.  The example which was set by the host country of IGF 2009, Egypt, and then later on by Kenya for IGF 2011, they helped us sort of get names beforehand through the IGF Secretariat to the governments and thus, the visa arrangements were made much easier.
It has always been a problem to actually leave our countries without a visa, and visa before departure is very necessary in the case of people from developing countries or where those countries which have already security issues going on in them.
That has to be looked at.  Once again, is there a possibility to look at single venue for workshops and main sessions.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Okay.  Please answer it.
>>AZERBAIJAN:  Okay.  Thanks for the question.
Regarding this first point, I mean, the physical -- the persons who have the physical needs, during the first site visits, we discussed this issue as well, and that's why I would like to note that we are planning to involve (saying name), who is dealing with the physical needs of persons with physical needs, and that's why if you'll have the list of them, we'll provide each of them with the assistant.  And during the events, during the event dates, every physical need person will be accompanied by one person.
Regarding the second issue, the venue, I would like to again note that the distance between these venues is about 500 meters.
And the next visa issue which I already mentioned.  We are dealing with this process and after lessons learned from all previous IGFs, and we'll take also into consideration of your proposal regarding the simplification and let me say delivery of the visa time.
And the last issue regarding the single venue, we'll discuss and we'll take it into consideration.
And you'll be informed via the Web site which will be launched in the next weeks.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA: The European Union, please.
>>EUROPEAN COMMISSION: Thank you, Mr. Chairman.  For clarity, I am making this intervention on behalf of the European Commission and not the European Union as a whole.  We have some issues with the Chevalier which I hope will be solved shortly.  I just wanted to express our trust that the host country government will be fully able to accommodate all the concerns that have been expressed so far.  I would not underestimate the logistical concerns that have been highlighted.  We would also like to suggest to try and focus on the substance of the meeting, on the content part of the meeting.  Again, this is not to underestimate the concerns that have been raised, which are fair concerns, but at the end of the day we are trustful that the IGF Secretariats in those countries will be able to address these issues.  
I would like to make a question which relates to what my colleague from the U.K. has already raised, specifically the ministerial meeting which is being planned before the IGF.  Now I think I heard the host country representative saying that the ministerial meeting will be roughly on the 5th of November.  I would just like to signal that in order to ensure broad high-level participation from ministers, it is important that this date is fixed as soon as possible.  Ministers' agendas, as we all know, tend to become full very, very quickly.
Secondly, as you may know, Neelie Kroes, the vice president of the European Commission with the portfolio for the digital agenda attended the Kenya IGF in 2011.  She enjoyed very much the energy that could be felt during that meeting.
It is very important that the agenda for the ministerial meeting that will precede the IGF is, again, fixed as soon as possible, is discussed as soon as possible, as it may be difficult to -- at least from our perspective -- to put it perhaps not very diplomatically, to convince ministers to attend a ministerial meeting if the agenda is not clear, the agenda and the participation list is not clear, as soon as possible.  Thank you very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Please.
>>AZERBAIJAN:  Thank you for your comments.  The exact date, fixed date, will be confirmed as soon as possible in order -- as you mentioned.
We understand that it is very difficult to assure the highest participation for the ministerial meeting and we will take into consideration and the exact dates will be confirmed as soon as possible.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you for your interventions.  
Now, I want to go to the other topics of our agenda where we have topics regarding logistics and others.  And you can say your questions in this moment of our discussions.
We will now turn our focus toward broad structure.  Now we will discuss the structure of our next IGF and the main sessions, workshops.  And I ask the agenda given indicative at least of issues.  And please feel free to add other perspectives as necessary.
Now, we have to facilitate an open debate.  I'm proposing that we group these topics into three distinct but interrelated areas.  Firstly, we should discuss the structure of IGF, 2012, the main sessions, feeder workshops and workshops.  
Secondly, we will have comments on other events such as open fora and, finally, logistic issues.  If you wish to add the other perspective, can I suggest that you try and fit them in one of these three areas.
I will first give the floor to the IGF Secretariat to give us some of the comments received in connection with these items.  Please, I ask you.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO:   Thank you, Chair.  I'll be brief because I feel it is more important for suggestions to come from you.  
In the inputs for the structure of the IGF meeting, there were comments relating to the opening and closing sessions.  While there was recognition of importance of these sessions, it was also considered important to take into account the need to use the relatively small amount of time available for the IGF meetings.  Basically, I think, this point related to the opening and closing sessions should be of a limited duration.
For the main sessions, it was stressed that a continued effort should be made to find ways to report on the capacity-building outcomes in a consolidated way.  Feeder workshops, which incorporate all stakeholders, should be prioritized.  
There was comments saying there were too many workshops going on at the same time, which were held in parallel, therefore, fragmenting the audience and reducing opportunities to -- for delegates to participate and learn from the debates.
It was also commented that the IGF should continue to encourage the MAG to facilitate workshop mergers where multiple workshop proposals contain similar or duplicate content areas and allow the aggregation of diverse workshop submissions.
Feeder workshops, also a question -- and this is a question from the IGF Secretariat.  Should we continue the feeder workshops?  Were they a good thing?  Or should we find another mechanism?  
Another comment says it also remains to provide a setting-the-scene session that helps provide the necessary introduction to newcomers, to Internet governance discussions.
And, yes, that's the brief summary of the inputs.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Okay.  Thank you.  Thank you.  Before our lunch, we'll have one hour.  And this is open discussions.  And, please provide some suggestions to the mentioned issue related to the structure and main sessions, workshops, others.
This is issue related to content of our forum, and we can discuss these issues.  Please.  Yeah, give your -- E.U., please.
>> EUROPEAN COMMISSION:  Thank you, Mr. Chairman.  I'm speaking on behalf of the European Commission to address the points that have been raised by the IGF Secretariat.  Concerning the duration of the opening and closing session, we would agree that within reason it would be helpful to keep the duration of those sessions to the minimum necessary to allow for longer discussion in workshops, whether feeder workshops, open sessions, et cetera.
The real strength of the Internet Governance Forum counts from the possibility for stakeholders to really interact with one another.  Coffee breaks and lunches are normally a great occasion to do that, but workshops should be the main workhorse for doing that.  So we would suggest, again, within reason to rebalance the current allocation of time ensuring that workshops have enough time for discussion.
Concerning the suggestion for the MAG to encourage the merging of workshops, there our suggestion would be to do that within reason.  Our experience is that there is some times certain tendency to merge workshops beyond what is really logical given the workshop description.  
Another strength of the IGF is in its diversity, the diversity of points of view, diversity of participants.  So rather than merging when there is no real reason to merge, we would encourage to find ways to ensure that the outputs of the workshops are maybe on similar topics but conducted with different participants and different speakers, that these workshops are the possibilities to engage with one another and then to provide their results whether to feeder workshops or otherwise.  We stand ready to provide further comments as the discussion on the IGF proceeds.
On setting-the-scene sessions, I'm not entirely sure how they would work.  I'm not entirely sure I understand what they would entail.  But as a general principle, the European Commission would be very much in favor of ensuring that all participants of the IGF have a basic understanding of what we are discussing.  
Sometimes -- again, to maybe be not as diplomatic as I should be, sometimes I have the feeling that there is a certain tendency among all IGF participants to assume that everybody that participates has the same level of knowledge.  And this goes against the goal and purpose to enlarge the participation as other colleagues before me have said.  So we would encourage to find a mechanism, whether it is setting-the-scene workshop or something else, to ensure that participants and new participants do not feel intimidated and lost, to put it very bluntly, within the IGF.  Thank you very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.
Please, yeah.
>> DIPLOFOUNDATION:  Thank you, Mr. Chair.  My name is Jovan Kurbalija.  I'm director of DiploFoundation.  And I would like to use this opportunity of some delay in the agenda to thank Kenya for hosting extremely successful IGF.  And following the presentation of our friends and knowing personally of the hospitality, I'm sure the IGF 2012 will be very well-prepared.
We will definitely benefit from the fact that Baku will host quite a few significant events, including, of course, EuroSoc but also an annual meeting of Directors of Diplomatic Academies in September.
I didn't use the new taxies in Baku.  But last time I went there, it was quite a few years ago.  I was (indiscernible), and it was a wonderful experience with the taxi driver showing me Baku, this lovely city.  I hope that we will be spared from the hazardous wind which may spoil our sightseeing in Baku, which happened in November.  
Based on personal experience, for those of us or you who are interested in dress, please do not miss their dress which they call Bakustic dress, which is simply great.
We have, I'm sure, all building blocks to extremely successful IGF.  And it will be up to us in IG community and MAG to make sure that we will have a rich and relevant policy content for the IGF.  
And on that point, I would like just to make a few conclusory reflections.  First, Baku -- IGF Baku will have the test of relevance.  IGF is in the transition, and IGF's future will depend on the relevance of discussion which we will have there.
If we took time to make additional efforts to engage governments, especially from developing and small countries, and especially from the region as Kenya did the last time, governments should consider the IGF to be a space where they can both express their views and benefit from policy solutions by addressing the increasing number of challenges in governing the Internet effective and future debate.
More active participation of governments will strengthen the multistakeholder nature of the IGF as well.
It is time also in the preparation for IGF 2012 to create new interfaces towards new policy spaces that are developing worldwide very fast.  As we saw recently in policy discussions and debate around SOPA, ACTA and related to highly topical issues, we have to remain relevant in the preparation for IGF 2012 and in IGF Baku.
It is also time to strengthen capacity-building for Internet Governance in order to increase participation from developing countries and it has to start now.  It has to be a process.  It has to be relevant and directly related to policy discussions at the IGF in Baku.
It is time also to mainstream e-participation in the work of IGF, and we should make a really important effort to move e-participation from experimental to mature phase.  It will require financial support, training and including the way IGF is organized.
Those are just a few points.  And I will conclude with the reflection around our hosts, the working group of IGF improvements and our efforts, we must ensure that transition -- that successful transition of the IGF which should remain the policy space for inclusive and effective discussion on Internet governance policy issue, which we'll be facing more and more in forthcoming periods.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  Please, U.K.  
Please, Yrjo Lansipuro.
>>YRJÖ LÄNSIPURO:   Thank you, Mr. Chairman.  My name is Yrjo Lansipuro from the ISOC Chapter of Finland.  And I would also like to, first of all, thank Kenya for IGF last year.  And, actually, I take my starting point from the -- one of the last sessions we had in Nairobi where the Indian representative was able to shed some light on why India, Brazil, South Africa wanted to have a commission, committee of United Nations to provide a one-stop shop in Internet governance for those developing countries who don't have -- can't afford to go to all these meetings we have.
And I think that this idea of one-stop shop is very good.  But the address is wrong.  The address is not 1st Avenue, New York, it should be IGF.  So, basically, I think this is a fantastic challenge for the IGF to provide a one-stop shop at every IGF, a stream of events which could be followed where those participants who want to have an annual dose of information on what is happening in the various areas of Internet governance could get that.  
In practical terms, that would mean structuring the IGF so that there would be a stream for these people.  And I think that this idea has been alluded to by some speakers already here.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  Brazil, please.
>>BRAZIL:   Hello, thank you, Chair.  Sorry.  The last time I spoke, I forgot to say my name.  Raimund (saying name) from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.  
Just a clarification.  Brazil has changed the address of this stop shop.  We have gave up to put forward the idea of search for a place in the U.N., just to clarify.  We are searching for a new kind of proposition.
But I would like to come back to Andrea's proposition and talk a little bit about the organization of the time of IGF.  Since the IGF is an opportunity to learn about the Internet governance issues, especially for those countries -- for those developing countries.
I'd like to just propose we start to think about some synthesis sessions, which would be somehow a closing session of the main themes that would present some -- not outcomes but some syntactic debates that have been carried out in the IGF to try to make track on the main issues that would be very useful for not just to resume the debates that have occurred but also to put forward some ideas to the next IGF, that would be kind of chain -- linking chain between the existing IGF, the current IGF, to the next one but not in the next meeting, two or three or four months after.  We think the IGF itself, it is not easy to do.  It is not simple to do.
But I think it would be very useful to try to sum up some of the very rich and very important discussions that occurs in the IGF, and maybe this would help us to do what Finland representative has proposed, to make IGF more important in this map of Internet governance place of discussion.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.
Jennifer, please.
>> ICC/BASIS:  Good afternoon.  My name is Jennifer Warren, and my comments are on behalf of the ICC/BASIS.  Thank you for this opportunity to comment.  
We wanted to focus on two aspects of the structure of the IGF as we go forward.  One is the opening and closing ceremonies, and the other is media.  
In the context of the opening and closing ceremonies, basically, we'd really like to emphasize comments that have already been made by one or two colleagues today.  These ceremonies are obviously an important part of any international meeting, regional or global.  And it is obviously also very important to provide political leadership with visibility and a role.
However, we do not -- we think it is important also to retain the true multistakeholder nature of the IGF.  And so opening and closing ceremonies that are perhaps disproportionate in time to the overall event may overwhelm the nature of the multistakeholder aspects of the IGF.  So we'd like to make sure that they're proportionate and allowing us to maximize the dialogue opportunities across all the stakeholder communities.
With respect to media, we would like to propose more consultation and participation of the private sector and the other stakeholder communities in the press conferences.
Doing so would allow perhaps a fuller reflection of the breadth and quality of the dialogue and discussions that are going on across the key themes of the IGF.  So toward this goal, for example, the IGF could look to coordinate among stakeholders and provide them with notice of when a press conference would be called and invite multiple stakeholders to -- representatives of the multiple stakeholder communities present to participate, again, to show kind of the breadth and nature of the discussions going on which, again, would be part of a more global messaging.  Thank you very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.
UNESCO.  Microphone, please.
>> UNESCO:  Thanks again, Mr. Chairperson.  Even though we accept there are any problems of quality, the nature of quality of IGF (indiscernible), we should also accept it is made of various building blocks:  Government, civil society, private sector, academia and other pressure groups.
As you know, these building blocks and their frameworks are at the regional or logistic levels, as indicated by myself in the morning when I spoke about the launch of the African IGF.  And also the delegate of U.K. spoke about the Commonwealth cybersecurity program.  We also have the Francophonie, which is very active in the Internet governance issue.
My reflection, Mr. Chair, brings me to the issue of having the possibility of facilitating regional workshops during IGF.  I think this issue was not really accepted during the last IGF.  But if we did not have a regional workshop in Africa this year, we would not have the African IGF.
I think if the stakeholders want this to happen, this may be organized just at the meeting of the IGF.
In addition, I would like also to support the capacity-building tracks like this was done in Nairobi last year.  This really would bring stakeholders the same level of comprehension and understanding the way forward.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  Please.
>> JOHN CARR:  John Carr from the European NGO Alliance for Child Safety Online.  I just wanted to pick up on a point that was made by my colleagues from the European Union and also from the U.K. government about diaries.  
Obviously, politicians have got an unusually stressful life, unlike the rest of us, but just to make the point, it is -- in the previous years, we've often not known until very late in the process exactly when our workshops would be taking place.  I don't just mean the time of day but the day of the week on which they would in the event be happening.
That's made it essentially impossible for us to get a number of very prominent people from the world that we inhabit from the NGO sector and also you might say from industries.  Senior executives of many of the Internet companies that we work with, their diaries are every bit as cluttered and every bit as difficult as politicians are.  And, yet, it is very important, I think, that people like that can attend the IGF and do attend the IGF.
So if it's not possible to have precision about precisely at what time on what day different events will be happening, it would certainly help us with our planning if we could know at least very early on at least what day of the week it was that our workshops are going to take place because we want to bring some senior people to participate.  
We want people to be able to take part in the process; but we cannot do that, we simply cannot do that if we only know one month or two months before precisely what day of the week it is that our workshops or our events will be taking place.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  U.K., please.
>>UNITED KINGDOM:   Thank you, Mr. Chair.  And, first of all, I'd like to concur with what our colleague from the UNESCO has just proposed with regard to a workshop for the regional IGFs.  The workshop in Nairobi, I think, was a good initiative in bringing together representatives of the regional IGFs.  And as I tried to indicate earlier, we feel that the role of the regional IGFs is becoming increasingly important in the global landscape of Internet governance.  And the news about convening the Arab IGF in Kuwait is particularly welcomed.  
I mean, for Africa, now we have a Southern African IGF, West African IGF, East African IGF, which has a long track record, one of the first regional ones, and the Arab one.  So this is excellent news.
And some coming together and interaction in Baku, I think, would be very welcomed, indeed, without going to the extent of trying to formalize a relationship.  I don't think that's desirable.  Each regional IGF has its own modus operandi and agenda and so on.  But it is the interaction, I think, that's very important.
Secondly, I'd like to emphasize our support for clear objective setting for workshops and main sessions and articulating those objectives in the form of questions, which are long -- well-established very early on in the preparatory process.  
That has two advantages, I think.  Firstly, it assists with the MAG's important work in trying to identify convergence and opportunities to merge proposals.  If questions are similar, then there is a good basis for negotiating a merger.
But I do very much support the commission -- European Commission's view that this effort to merge one -- merge workshops should not be at the expense of innovation and new ideas and new proposals.  Respecting diversity, I think, is key to the success of the IGF.  So the overall number of workshops should not be the determinant.  The number of workshops proposals reflects how open and successful the IGF process can be.  But, as I say, question setting is a useful tool.  
Secondly, the question setting, I think, helps with the kind of proposal that Brazil was making, that you have some kind of synthesis where you might have a session reviewing, Well, how much progress was there in exploring those questions?  Did some solutions start to merge through consensus building, and then did new questions arise out of discussions?  So some synthesis -- synthesizing exercise at the end of the IGF, I think, is very useful.  It then gives the sense of what is actually being achieved here,  not through some decision-making process -- that's not what the IGF is for -- but to see what progress is being made and what is coming out of the discussions through some synthesizing, I think, is very useful.  Thank you very much, Chair.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.  Please.
>> GLOCOM:  Thank you, Mr. Chair.  Adam Peake from GLOCOM in Tokyo from civil society.  
I just wanted to again touch on workshops.  Every year we hear comments that there are too many parallel workshops.  And every year, we have the same comments about merging of like workshops.  And we have been trying to do that merging for the last three or four years, and it has not been very successful because people have invested an enormous amount of time, effort and energy in creating their own workshops.  They have an enormous investment in them and wish to see them go forward.
So I think essentially I would like to ask the MAG to be very careful when you do start merging of workshops.  We have over 100 events that come through a multistakeholder process that's purely bottom-up, is -- it is a great uniqueness and success of the IGF.
This is a purely user-generated program.  And it's something that, you know, you do not see in any other forum.  So, yes, they can be better designed.  Yes, talking as the U.K. just said, there could be better criteria established.  And we could ask that they follow proposals more quickly, that speaker lists are made available and more information is published so that h people can decide which workshops they want to go to.
But reducing the number and trying to force merging I don't think will work, and it may just undermine one of the greatest successes of the IGF, which is this enormous bottom-up swell of people wishing to contribute and share information.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Thank you.
I ask the gentleman on the first floor.  Robert Guerra.
>> ROBERT GUERRA:  I just wanted to make maybe two constructive comments on the structure.  Having participated in a session that got canceled but still took place at the IGF in Nairobi, I think it showed the model of ad hoc sessions which are sessions where there are participants in the room that are issue experts but they are moderated but not necessarily comments, brings a novel approach and a conversation about an issue among the different stakeholders.  So I would suggest maybe having a set number of workshops that use innovative approaches for dialogue could be particularly good.
I think another thing that I've not seen as much or could be useful in the planning is perhaps some sort of -- the use of polling of participants both before and after the meeting just to see what they have learned and what are some of the issues to see how some of the participants do over time.  
And I think in terms of a third type of structural, I guess, improvement would be something that I alluded to and others have mentioned as well, that some of the stakeholders do hold sessions before the IGF proper starts.  And some of these sessions could be particularly very helpful in terms of capacity-building over the course of a day or two so they can more effective and the lessons learned from these small workshops and how they could participate if they were better coordinated amongst the different stakeholders, could be of great strategic value to the give.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:   Okay, thank you.  Mr. Izumi Aizu.
>>IZUMI AIZU:  Thank you, chair.  We have two multis, the multistakeholder and multilingual, and so I'd like to draw your attention to the multilingual aspects of the IGF.  I said this last year but nobody really took it seriously.  I'd like to propose that some of the sessions and/or workshops will allow the organizer to designate any of the U.N. or six U.N. languages as the primary working language and let English go to the second place.
Where by default all the U.N. languages translations are prepared, so I'm not asking any additional increase in the cost, if there's five or six interpreters there, because none -- so far it has been that English is always the main language and all the others are somehow secondary language.
I agree that our working language here be English, but this will allow, say, the Spanish-speaking people or French or Chinese or Russian or Arabic to be the host of that session and then talk to the same name -- you know, language groups.  Although the Japanese intonations are handicapped because we are not inside the U.N. languages, although we have more than a hundred million people and outnumber some of the U.N. language people.
Anyway, so that this will give attention to some of the linguistic diversities which the Internet can connect to.  I don't mean that we will sort of separate into the different linguistic groups but let some non-English speaker feel like they are the host of some of the issues, not all the entire chute issues.  That will perhaps give some more new views in the new round.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Ms. Cade, please.
>>MARILYN CADE:  Thank you, chair.  My name is Marilyn Cade.  I serve as the chief catalyst to IGF USA, which is one of the initiatives focused on broadening and deepening the awareness of Internet governance.  I wanted to make a comment in response to the experience of -- very positive experience, I think, last year of bringing together the national and the regional IGFs in an exchange of experience.
There were goals of doing something much more formalized, but many of the organizers and participants in the national and regional initiatives are also heavily involved in catalyzing workshops, open forums, and bringing others together to participate in the global IGF.
I'm looking forward -- and I would just also note that every year more initiatives emerge and they're all very different.
They have certain commonalities and I think the really important values that we hold at the global IGF of acting on an equal footing, being organized by multistakeholders, not being dominated by any particular group, certain other important and hearing all voices, those are characteristics that we all, I think, want to see in any initiative that utilizes the brand of the IGF as an initiative.
But I think from my own survey analysis of the reports of the national and regional IGFs, that more information sharing will be positive, but that it's probably important to take into account also the fact that each of these initiatives has local, national, and regional work to do, as well as a goal of participating in the global IGF.
Many of them now are standing up remote hubs to build on the participation that takes place in their locale.
I will look forward to interacting with other organizers and those who are involved in the regional and national IGFs, those that exist today or those that are just emerging, and perhaps we could have a short interaction while we are here today to think about what might work produce I feel to ensure there's a strong reflection into IGF in Azerbaijan.
Thank you, chair.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Argentina, please.
>>ARGENTINA:  Thank you, Mr. Chair.  My name is Olga Cavalli from the minister of foreign affairs of Argentina.  I would like to support from Izumi Aizu said.  We organize every year a workshop about the usage of native -- Latin languages and Native American languages, especially Spanish, in the IGF and the Internet, and we usually majored in Spanish, and so if we could broaden, perhaps, the transcription from the Spanish channel or other tools that are available.  Not to put more expenses in the budget but use what is available for hosting smaller events like workshops in other languages, that would be great.  Thank you very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  The Europe union, please.
>>EUROPEAN COMMISSION:  Thank you, Mr. Chairman.  I'm making this intervention on behalf of the European Commission.
I would like to support the idea which has been advanced by Brazil, if I'm not mistaken, to have -- and supported by the U.K. as well, I believe -- to have some kind of synthesis during the IGF, not after the IGF.
This should not change the nature of the IGF as a nondecisional body, but having some kind of synthesis of what has been discussed there would be very helpful.
I would also like to support the idea that is coming from different parties.  I would like to stress the importance that this is reflected from the positions of different parties of national and especially regional IGFs.  
In Europe, we have a very important and very successful experience which is EuroDIG, the European Dialogue on Internet governance.  Other regions of the world have started or are implementing or are continuing similar experiences.  It would be very important that we continue and we support that these regional experiences can have a proper place during -- throughout the schedule of the IGF.
On the issue that has been raised on multilingualism, as you may know, the European Union has 23 different official languages, so this is an issue that is very close to our heart.  On the other hand, we do understand -- and I speak by experience -- that providing interpretation and translation is a challenging and costly endeavor.  
However -- and I'm going to say this to be absolutely clear because I -- the commission does not want to be -- there to be any doubt about it.
We are one of the donors of the IGF.  We do not direct what the IGF Secretariat does with our contribution, but it would be exceptionally good if the contribution that comes from the European Union as well as many other donors, if part of this could be used to strengthen the capability for the IGF to provide some form of multilingualism, because as others have said before me and as we know in the EU by experience, the ability to express yourself in your language cannot be reviled, and if you want the IGF to be truly inclusive and truly multistakeholder, well, we need to work more and to work better on that.  Thank you very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  I ask ICC, please.
>>ICC/BASIS:  Thank you, chair.  Ayesha Hassan speaking on behalf of ICC/BASIS.  I just wanted to pick up on a couple of the comments that have been made regarding workshops and how to continue to improve the scheduling in that regard.
I'd like to support the input from our colleague, John Carr, about perhaps it would be helpful if the preparatory process in the MAG and the Secretariat work very hard this year to have the announcement of workshops, the date and time, much further in advance.  That will really go a long way to improving the range of speakers, as well as the preparations that the organizers would do for the workshops.
So I would support that.
I think we also want to continue our efforts to ensure that workshops are well-prepared, that solid information is available well in advance so people can plan on which workshops they'd like to attend, and also keep working towards non-duplication.
We have had the challenge -- it's difficult to streamline and merge beyond a certain point so I think the points made this morning in that regard are helpful for the continued MAG discussions on that issue as well.
This year, you know, workshops -- there was a real effort by the Secretariat to encourage workshop organizers to post white papers before or after the IGF that related to the issues that were part of their workshop's discussion.
We'd be interested in knowing, you know, whether workshop organizers and participants found that the white papers that were posted were helpful and how can that be built upon this year, if it was helpful.
A last comment would be about how to take more stock of the workshops and their value add.
Perhaps exploring the idea of some kind of survey, whether it's on line or a paper sheet left in the workshop room so that participants can give feedback if they don't have a computer or what have you.  Perhaps that would be an interesting way to start capturing more feedback about individual workshops.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  China, please.
>>CHINA:  Thank you, chair.
China would like to support the idea raised by our colleague from Japan Argentina to enhance the multilingualism in IGF, and we think that it would be helpful to -- also helpful to raise the profile and influence of IGF in non-English-speaking regions in the world.
And we also would like to make a general comment on the structure of IGF.
It's about some duplication among issues that was discussed in different main sessions, which we think that needs some refinement in future IGFs.
As we know, we now have a kind of stable structure of IGF which consists of six main sessions, each of which are focused on specific aspects of Internet issues.  But during a discussion, we found that some similar topics were discussed in different -- under different sessions.
For instance, we discussed the human rights issues pertaining to Internet in the session on security, open and privacy session, but we also discuss it in the session of access and diversity as well as in the emerging issues.
It's true that we think it's -- they are related to the similar sessions somehow, but however we think that it's better to centralize the discussion in one session which is most appropriate for this topic, so that we can have extensive and effective discussion on this topic and also can allow other sessions to have more time to focus on the core issues of its main session.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Council of Europe, please.
>>COUNCIL OF EUROPE:  Thank you, Mr. Chair.  I just wanted to pick up on one point, which was the mention of diversity and being an observer to the MAG and hearing their different concerns about trying to merge and sometimes the tension in over-merging and then people lose sight of their identity in their proposal and the people they want to bring to Internet Governance Forum meetings.
You know, learning from my experience involved in shaping, you know, plenary sessions with a lot of other people like the security, openness and privacy session in Nairobi, for example, and trying very hard to include everybody's view is not easy.  And I think we have to bear that in mind.  I'm also involved in the EuroDIG, and we've received already over 70 proposals for themes and for workshops and further events and it's quite clear that inclusion is key to the success at least for EuroDIG, and we need to find creative solutions.
We need to find ways to speak differently and to lead discussions differently, to change the duration of spaces.  Not only 90-minute sessions, but 60-minute sessions and 15- to 30-minute sessions, and try to mix up and be more innovative with the way we talk with each other.  And that's something which hopefully will come through this year when we meet in Stockholm on the 14th and 15th of June.  
So I think we need to do more here in this meeting and in future planning meetings to include the people who are not here for different reasons that you've mentioned.  And I think we really should spend time prioritizing time now about who those people are, what are their -- why are they not here, making efforts to contact them, and finding funding to get them to future meetings.  There is funding.  We've heard there's threads of funding different places, and I think we should spend time getting those key people here and making space for them so they feel included, because perhaps they don't feel included.
I mean, for example, we'll all be in Baku in November, I think, and in the pan-European space, there are 14 national Internet governance platforms.  They should be all be there.  Some of them are very close to Baku.
So we should spend time in trying to get them there.
Also from a, you know, pan-European regional flavor, which is always the incumbent thing when you have a global event.
So I think we really should spend time on those people who are not here and trying to make sure that they are involved at an early stage.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Okay.  Thank you.
APC, please.  Yeah.
>>APC:  Thank you, Chairperson.
I'm Anriette Esterhuysen, Association for Progressive Communications.  And as someone who arrived late, it would be useful to know where we are in the agenda, so if the chair can enlighten us on that, but I just have a few comments based on what has been said this morning.
I support the idea that there's some form of synthesis that takes place during the event, and one way of doing this could be to have a -- and I think this is a proposal that has been made previously -- two days of workshops and open forums followed by then some form of synthesis and then two days of roundtables and main sessions.
I think this would also accommodate the need expressed by John Carr and Ayesha Hassan to know in advance when workshops would take place.
And then a few other comments.  I'd like to endorse Jennifer Warren's comments earlier this morning about -- or this afternoon about opening and closing ceremonies and retaining the multistakeholder nature of the IGF.
With regard to Ayesha's comment about workshop white papers, I personally -- and I know that the APC network -- have found this very useful.  It's useful for the preparation as well as for the postworkshop reporting as well as for workshop participants.
I also support the idea of online or hard-copy evaluations of works and main sessions.
And I support China's input that main sessions and how they're structured and how the content is defined can be improved.  Main sessions has been a challenge for us in the IGF for the last few years, and I certainly think they need serious attention from the MAG.
And then finally, I think Lee Hibbard's comments about the integration and also other people's comments of national and regional IGFs are extremely important, but it's also important the other way around.
I think it's also very important to -- you know, we participated in several regional IGFs, including last year the first southern African IGF, and it's also challenging for first-time participants in a regional IGF to grasp the scope of the global IGF and the dynamic relationship between regional and global.
So I think there needs to be a more dynamic relationship between the global, the regional, and national IGFs, and they should be multidirectional.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Al-Shatti, please.
>>QUSAI AL-SHATTI: Thank you, Mr. Chair.  
On the issue of workshops and the plenaries, we have been talking about the setting of the schedule and the fact that there are many workshop conflicts with the plenaries.
Actually, if we look at Nairobi, we found many workshops, many participants in workshops, in the best of times, many participants in the plenaries, and they were there.
So the issue of organizing workshops and the timing that may conflict or coincide with the plenaries, we didn't see that reflects on the -- on lowering the participations, not they're in the plenaries or in the workshops in Nairobi.  Actually, it's a positive sign to have many workshops in the IGF.  This means that people have interest to participate and not only participate, to contribute also.  So maybe fine-tuning some workshops and merging them together, this is an issue that needs to be worked on, but the fact that we have many workshops along with the plenaries at the same time we did not notice in Nairobi that it affected the participation in both of them.
What I think that needs to be done on the workshop side is that we see lack of reporting back on what happened in the workshop.  The plenary is always documented but not necessarily what was discussed within the workshops.
Also, we noticed that in some workshops, the -- let's say the main speakers of these workshops did not commit fully to the topic of the workshop.  The workshop sometimes talks about something, but the input from the speakers would go in a different direction.
This is something that needs to be fine-tuned when it comes to workshops.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Egypt, please.
>>EGYPT:  Thank you, Chairman.  My name is (saying name).  I'm from Egypt.
I want actually to stress the importance of remote participation.  Several previous speakers have spoken to this point, but I think we can also expand this, the current model for remote participation, which only captures live participation to also (indiscernible) participation.
Several other meetings, especially within the U.N. organizations, they upload Webcast audio and video recordings to the Web site immediately after the sessions.  We think this model should be reflected also in the IGF.  Technically, I think it's not so consuming in terms of staff and resources to upload audio recordings, especially, to the website immediately after sessions from workshops and other sessions.
This actually enables right participation regardless of the time zone, which might be challenging for some people.
You want also to build on the momentum during the period which the IGF takes place.  A lot of news coverage worldwide takes place and so many people actually will be encouraged to use these recordings if they are available.
Currently it actually takes between several weeks to a couple of months until this material is uploaded on the IGF Web site.
Finally, I wish also to echo a previous proposal by EC and U.K. to allow for space for interaction among regional IGFs.  We think this is very important, especially for the newcomers, I would say.
There is a lot to share between regional initiatives, and there is a lot to learn from each other.
Also, the idea about the synthesis session during the IGF.  We think this is -- this is really helpful for newcomers and it will really increase a meaningful passengers from developing countries and least-developed countries.  Thank you, chair.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Okay.  Thank you.
>>LUCINDA FELL: Thank you.  I'm Lucinda Fell from Childnet International in the U.K., and Mark from the DCMS already mentioned the young people who came out, and the question was asked:  Who is missing from these discussions?  And I think one of those groups of people is young people, but looking around the room, I think there are also other groups such as disability groups who aren't perhaps represented today.
One of the reasons that young people are unable to take part in these discussions is partly due to funding but also because of their schooling and the time cost.
That's also really prohibitive for them to take part in the regional IGFs which would be something also really important for them to do.
So my colleague and I committed to attending these meetings on their behalf, and we really want to see their voice raised at these meetings and their representation at the IGF, particularly in the main sessions.  We've run workshops now in Sharm El Sheikh and Vilnius and last year in Nairobi as well with these young people.  We had a merger last year, which was great but that also meant that only half of what they wanted to say got heard, but we want to see them in the main sessions and we want to see greater representation there.  Thank you, chair.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Now I want to give the floor to China, but -- and I ask if you'd go to the other topics of our agenda and discuss the other areas.
Please, China.
>>CHINA:  Thank you, chair.  Sorry for taking the floor again.  I just would like to give a brief clarification on my previous comments.
Actually, our comments is not to reform the main sessions.  Actually we think that we don't have any difficulty with the current structure of the main sessions and we think it works pretty well.  Our comments is just on the allocation of the issues among these main sessions and how we can avoid duplication among these issues.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Please.  Mr. Nii.
>>NII QUAYNOR: Thank you.  My name is Nii Quaynor.  I'm from Ghana, from the National Information Technology Agency.
I have a question about this new word which I've just certified "synthesis" and I'm wondering whether this is just another word for something that we all agree we will not be trying to do, which is to be arriving at decisions.
In other words, this is just another way of migrating gradually towards that approach.
It seems to me that during the actual event, it may not be a good time to even synthesize, because you will not see all the things that are happening.  However, if that is the case, it may be better for a proposal for a workshop to be made that tries to do that.  You may find it more effective to assess each workshop as it is happening, so that maybe later on when it gets pulled together we can get a sense of what each of the workshops were doing.  I thought I may make that point.
My last comment is on the idea that there are too many workshops in parallel.
I thought that was rather a very good thing, in that it helps people from developing countries with varied backgrounds to choose which of the workshops are most accessible to them, and I pray that that gets retained.  Thank you very much.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Okay.  We have only five minutes before our lunch, but I see four persons is wanting to speak, and please -- going to the other events and discuss these other issues.  Please.  Brazil, please.
>>BRAZIL:  Thank you, chair.  30 seconds.  Just to clarify the distinguished representative of Ghana, at least in my speech the word "synthesis" is not related to decisions but to something that is made in another kind of meetings.  That is, you need a commission of report that don't discuss this session, it's not to discuss anything, not to debate anything, not to vote anything, but to present a report on the issues that have been discussed in the workshops related to the main issue.
So this session will not be an opening debate.  Rather, it would be a really a report on the things that have been discussed.
Why I think it's important to be during the IGF is because things are clear -- are close to the consciousness of people that have discussed and from this point, from the end of the IGF to the next event of -- related to IGF, almost nothing is really decided or put forward.
So I think there is a point where the discussion is very fresh and clear.  It's just that.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  I ask very briefly say your comments, please.  European -- no, no, no.
>>EUROPEAN UNION:  Thank you, Mr. Chairman.  Very briefly, in reaction to the intervention by the distinguished representative of Ghana, I would like to clarify that our support for having a synthesis in the IGF is definitely and absolutely not a support for the IGF becoming a decision-making body.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Adam, please.
>>ADAM PEAKE:  Thank you.  Adam Peake, GLOCOM.  Just very quickly, most conferences end each of their sessions by handing out a questionnaire and the workshops and the main session.  It's like, "Was it any good, were the speakers good, was the topic relevant, did you learn something, what did you learn," and so on and so forth, and I think that's been missing from the IGFs.  It would be very helpful to have a short summary paper that's given out at the end of every session so that when we come to stock-taking sessions like this one, we can actually refer back to these.  And I know it sounds like a lot of work for Chengetai and the Secretariat to evaluate, but you've got lots more money, I hope, this year.  And that could be very useful.  It may help us have a more informed stock-taking session and to really see where the strengths are and what worked well.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Sweden, please.
>>SWEDEN: Thank you very much.  It's Maria from Sweden here.  I would just like to echo some of my colleagues talking about the importance or as they say the development of the regional and local IGFs.  And having the possibility during when you structure the meeting of the national -- or sorry, the global IGF, having the possibility to have an interaction between what has been happening in the regional and national IGFs and also could feed that into the global IGF.  And also the other way around, actually.  So the interaction is between the levels of these IGFs I think is very important, and I think as also of Council of Europe said, we are very, very happy to say that Sweden is going to host the European dialogue, the Internet governance in Stockholm in June.  And the reason we do that is, of course, to increase the awareness of the Internet governance discussions between the governments, but to also between all the stakeholders and try to contribute to that one.
So having like this good examples from various parts of the world, the regional and national IGFs, we could feed that into it and increase the possibility to have that dialogue in the structure of the global IGF.  That would be very good.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  Japan, please.
>>JAPAN:  Thank you.  I'm from Japan, but not representing my government at all.  I'm from the civil society.  Anyway, briefly, in relation to the synthesis, as many of you are members of the CSTD working group which will have the meeting next week, we are discussing about outcomes or outputs, robust upsets or messages, and none of these have been sort of made a strict consensus but we have close to some kind of rough consensus.  We are very much keen to listen to what these outcomes of the IGF 2012 will look like for the second round, so that we can have a good sense of this meeting and next week's meeting, so I'd like to hear more opinions in the afternoon session about this.  Thank you.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Thank you.  And last one, Mr. Jamil, please.
>>ZAHID JAMIL: Thank you.  Zahid Jamil from Pakistan, with DNDRC.  
I just wanted to say that it's interesting to see the consensus that is being formed with Ayesha from ICC, with APC, Adam, and others basically talking about having something that will survey at the end of a workshop what participants thought the workshop is going to be like.  I think we're moving towards that.  Sounds like a very good idea.  
What I also wanted to add with that was, since we're thinking about Internet social resources, we could think about live Twitter feeds so people can move around rooms, et cetera, and actually have that done if that's possible.  It might be an idea.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  Okay.  Thank you.  Thank you for your comments, for your speech.
And now we are finished with our first session.  Now we have two hours for the lunch and after 3:00 p.m., we invite you to continue to have discussions.  You have something, please?  Yes.  Some announcements, please.
>>ELMIR VALIZADA:  And after lunch we will focus our discussions on the two main topics of our agenda.  This is other events and the logistics.  And after, we will discuss the main themes and subthemes of the IGF.  
I want to inform you about one announcement and we have an invitation.  The nomination committee of ICANN has invited you to a cocktail reception in the delegates restaurant, Building A, 8th floor, Palais des Nations today, and this is held on 18.  Please join to us.  Thank you.  
Now time for the lunch and after we will wait for you in here.  Have you a comment?  Thank you.
[ Break ]

Contact Information

United Nations
Secretariat of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF)

Villa Le Bocage
Palais des Nations,
CH-1211 Geneva 10

igf [at] un [dot] org
+41 (0) 229 173 411