IGF 2017 WS #203
A missed link on trade negotiations, multilingualism and multiculturalism in a digital era.

Short Title
A missed link on trade negotiations
Proposer's Name: Mr. Gonzalo Navarro

Proposer's Organization: Asociación Latinoamericana de Internet (ALAI)

Co-Proposer's Name: Ms. Adela Goberna

Co-Proposer's Organization: Asociación Latinoamericana de Internet (ALAI)


Ms., Carolina, AGUERRE, Academia, Centro de Tecnología y Sociedad - CETyS- (University of San Andrés) Ms., Adela, GOBERNA, Private Sector, Asociación Latinoamericana de Internet - ALAI - Mr., Gonzalo, NAVARRO, Private Sector, Asociación Latinoamericana de Internet - ALAI -

Additional Speakers

Ady Beitler (Inter-American Development Bank - IDB-)

Ady Beitler works at the Inter-American Development Bank in programs that promote international trade and investment, particularly in the areas of information technology and intellectual property. Currently he leads the project ConnectAmericas, the IDB's digital platform dedicated to helping companies from the region do more business internationally - exports, imports and foreign investment

Carolina Aguerre (Centro de Tecnología y Sociedad -CETYS-)

Carolina Aguerre is a professor and researcher at the University of San Andrés in Buenos Aires. He is a member of the board of directors of the Technology and Society Center (CETYS) in the same institution. She holds a PhD in Social Sciences from the University of Buenos Aires and a Master's in Communication from Goldsmiths College, University of London. She was executive director of LACTLD and member of the MAG (IGF).

Marcela Otero (Dirección General de Relaciones Económicas Internacionales de Chile - DIRECON-)

Marcela Otero Fuentes is a Civil Engineer of the Catholic University, who works as Director of Multilateral Economic Affairs of DIRECON (Chile). With a track record of more than 20 years in foreign trade positions, prior to her current appointment she served as Counselor of the Chilean Mission to the World Trade Organization (WTO) and President of the Committee on Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures of that organization.


Intended agenda:

Introduction: 1-2 minutes introduction delivered by the in-presence moderator, who will briefly introduce the topic and the debates around this area.

First round of key speakers: 3 minutes aprox per key speaker. As the idea of this roundtable is to make the audience participants, each key speaker will count with 3 minutes aprox. to introduce their perspectives on the topic. The presentations will be short but concise, what will allow a better understanding of each speaker opinions on the subject. After this first round, 2 minutes will be granted to the speakers, in case they want to reply any of their colleagues speakers.(Total time: 27//28 minutes).

Moderator will open the floor for comments/questions

First round of opentable: 3 minutes aprox per participant (total time allocated: 15 minutes). The microphone will be open to other intervention delivered by the participants. After one in-presence participant speech or question, the in-presence moderator will ask the remote moderator if any remote participant would like to post a question or comment.

Moderator will announce when first opentable is over and deliver the microphone to the next key speaker.

Second round of key speakers: 3 minutes aprox per key speaker, six speakers. Same dynamic as in the first round will be applied (Total time: 27/28 minutes)

Moderator will open the floor for comments/questions.

Second round of opentable: 3 minutes max. per participant. Same dynamic as in the second round will be applied (Total time: 15 minutes)

Moderator will announce when second opentable is over

Final remarks: the moderator will close the table, by reading some final remarks, stating all the positions argued during the workshop (total time: 1-2 minutes)

Total time distribution:
Introduction: 1-2 minutes
Total time speakers: 55 minutes (divided into two rounds of 27/28 minutes each).
Total time participants (remote and in person): 30 minutes (divided into two rounds of 15 minutes each).
Closing: 1-2 minutes
Total time: 90 minutes.

Session Report (* deadline 26 October) - click on the ? symbol for instructions

IGF 2017


- Session Title:  “A missed link on trade negotiations, multilingualism and multiculturalism in a digital era. (WS203)

- Date:  Wednesday, December 20

- Time: 11.50 - 13.20
- Session Organizer: Gonzalo Navarro (ALAI)

- Chair/Moderator:  Gonzalo Navarro         
- Rapporteur/Notetaker:  Adela Goberna      

- List of Speakers and their institutional affiliations:   

  • Juan Carlos Lara - Derechos Digitales

  • Marília Maciel - DiploFoundation

  • Carolina Aguerre -  Centro de Tecnología y Sociedad - CETyS- (University of San Andrés)   

- Key Issues raised (1 sentence per issue):          


  1. Convergence of the digital and the trade world

  2. Differences in the legal traditions

  3. Trade and human rights

  4. Implementation of the trade agreements

- If there were presentations during the session, please provide a 1-paragraph summary for each presentation:                 

Marilia Maciel talked about how the protection of privacy, the rights of consumers and other issues are part of the current foreign trade agenda. However, she also claimed that these issues are currently much more connected to technical issues. For example, this year the WTO was much more proliferated in relation to the production of bibliographic material. She explained that this is very good because - although there is no mandate - since now we can better understand the position of the member countries. She continued by saying that there are many topics that are known by the Internet community but were never explained in such a way that they are accessible by other groups. The digital world and trade world are converging. Finally, she gave a series of examples on how different law traditions show the importance of taking care of multiculturalism.

Juan Carlos Lara explained that free trade agreements are usually proposed to advance trade agendas and are not always in line with the human rights agenda. In this regard, he commented that when some countries, for example, do not have data protection laws, but should have them due to their commitments in free trade agreements, it can have an impact regarding human rights, as it is being done guided by commercial reasons. Juan Carlos also commented that the problem exists when the agreements are not being negotiated between equal parts, as those with greater power can imposed certain conditions over the other.

Carolina Aguerre asked who should have the mandate or the right to impose discussions to advance in  trade. She said that various controversies exist and highlighted that last week the WTO did not renewed the mandate regarding e commerce, what in her opinion shows that there are different perceptions and scenarios on this subject. She pointed out that the implementation of this type of agreements, for example, still represents a big problem and discussion.

- Please describe the Discussions that took place during the workshop session (3 paragraphs):     

The discussion that took place during the workshop was basically about the scope of trade and the relation with party legal tradition. Mainly, the panelists discussed over the topic of how the different trade agreement should affect or not the local legal frameworks.

The panelist deeply addressed the different controversies that exist around trade and how diverse foras are becoming everyday more relevant for the development of Internet.  Moreover, some of them analyze the relation of certain actors within others. Finally, the panelist also discuss how the implementation of the trade agreements could challenge local and regional frameworks.   

- Please describe any Participant suggestions regarding the way forward/ potential next steps /key takeaways (3 paragraphs):    

Regarding steps forward or potential next steps, all participant agreed (in different ways) that trade agreements are starting to shape some parts of the digital development. This means that the Internet community (all stakeholders) will have challenges in order create awareness about all the impacts that certain trade provisions could have in diverse digital topics (data protection, copyright, etc).

Gender Reporting

- Estimate the overall number of the participants present at the session: 30 

- Estimate the overall number of women present at the session: 10 / 15

- To what extent did the session discuss gender equality and/or women’s empowerment?: Not discussed.

- If the session addressed issues related to gender equality and/or women’s empowerment, please provide a brief summary of the discussion: -