The following are the outputs of the captioning taken during an IGF virtual intervention. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Okay. Good afternoon, good evening, and good morning, ladies and gentlemen. This is the second day of the MAG meeting of the June open consultations event MAG meeting.
Just a few statements that we have to do before the start of the meeting, is that this meeting is being recorded and transcribed and also live-streamed through the IGF YouTube channel.
The links to the agenda and the transcription and documents and prerecorded videos are available on the IGF front page.
Please make sure that your microphone is muted at all times. And if you want to make an intervention, please use the online request system. The link has been pasted into the chat right now and it's also available on the front page of the IGF website.
For some reason, if you cannot log into the floor request system, please send a message in the chat and we will put your name in the queue.
When it's your turn to take the floor, the chair will call your name and give you the floor.
If you -- and, please, if you can, please switch on your video, as the chair said. It improves the atmosphere and it's also very helpful for the interpreters.
Please start your intervention by saying your name and affiliation. And also, can you please speak at a measured pace, not too fast, not too slow. This helps the people whose native language is not English and also helps the scribes.
Please also try and keep your interventions short. And one other thing, this is a MAG meeting, so MAG members do have preference. If you are not a MAG member and still want to take the floor, yes, you're free to request for the floor, and the chair will call your name according to the situation.
Once you have finished your intervention, please remember to mute your microphone again.
And I think that's everything I have to say beforehand.
And with that, I would like to call on the chair, Anriette Esterhuysen, to start the meeting.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks very much, Chengetai.
And thanks to everyone for all the work you did overnight. Welcome to the second to last day of this marathon MAG meeting of IGF 2020, the second meeting.
So I'm going to say it officially, good morning, good evening, and good afternoon, depending where you are. Welcome to the observers and the MAG members, the secretariat, and to our scribes, who have just confirmed that they can stay until 15:30 UTC, and then we will lose the scribes. So if we run late, we will lose our scribes.
So, everyone, what we've done, myself and the secretariat, is we have adapted the agenda a little bit today based on the experience of yesterday.
So I want to just run through it with you. We've just adjusted the time allocations and the task a little bit.
This plenary session, which will run from 13:00 to 14:30, so for an hour and a half rather than the initial hour we allocated. And this is where you will report back on your work. And thanks very much, everyone, for -- I was watching and stayed online. You all worked really hard yesterday.
And then we will look at various other things that we need to discuss today. So we'll have the reports, the breakouts. We'll display the final list and the subthemes. And if there's anything else that you wanted to raise, you can, based on your discussions.
I want to note here, it's very important for everyone, I think, just to reiterate, that this is a working meeting for MAG members. So I will give MAG members the floor before observers. But, observers, if you want to request the floor, please do. If there's time after MAG members have spoken, we'll give you the floor.
And thanks to those observers who wanted to sit in on the breakout groups yesterday. And also thank you to the MAG members for your willingness to be so inclusive by allowing observers to join your breakout groups as observers.
So just one more little reminder. Again, I think, Chengetai, you did mention it. Please mute your mics if you are not speaking. Otherwise, we will have to mute you.
Okay. So after this session, Luis, if you can just go down a little bit.
Okay. I think, Luis, this is not the correct agenda. Is it? No, it's not.
Sorry, we changed the agenda, and I think somehow we have a little break in between in the revised agenda.
So while Luis brings up the revised, annotated agenda, what we've done is to just put in a ten-minute break between plenary session II and plenary session I -- plenary session III. The purpose of that just being that we can kind of I understand line the workshop evaluation and selection process. And just to give you all randomly into groups time to spend ten minutes together just to talk, to just make sure that everyone is on track and happy with the decisions about the workshops.
Wai Min, I see you are with us. Welcome. It's really good to have you with us.
Wai Min from UN DESA in New York.
>>WAI MIN KWOK: Yes, Hi, Anriette.
Just to say hello.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: If you want to say something while we're waiting for the --
>>WAI MIN KWOK: No. No. Please go ahead.
I'm just listening in. Thank you, Anriette.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Okay. So we will have that -- let's not panic. Luis will put it on for us soon.
There will be the first plenary on workshop proposals, report-backs, finalizing that decision. And then we'll have a very short break, automatically clustering you randomly into breakout groups just for you to informally check in with each other and kind of celebrate the finalization of what has been a huge amount of work for MAG members, which is the workshop evaluation process.
We will then go into plenary session III. That plenary session is where we are beginning to look at main sessions. And we'll have some discussion in plenary. We've prepared some slides for you just to summarize proposals that are put on the table thus far.
And I am -- just -- Good. That's the agenda. Thanks, Luis.
If you can just make it a little bit bigger, I would appreciate that.
Thanks very much.
Okay. If you can move to plenary session III. For the output from the first plenary session, plenary session II will be the final list of workshops and subthemes. And this is the workshop -- list of workshops that we will then have to put through a second round of vetting, where we'll ask proposers to -- to tell us how they're going to run their session as a virtual session.
So to jump back to plenary session III, we'll have a general discussion about main session ideas that are already on the table. We'll give you some time to just think about that, about how to approach these main sessions. And -- but I think we really do not want to spend too much time. As you'll see, there's only from 14:40 to 15:30 UTC allocated to that. So that's 50 minutes allocated to that. And, hopefully, we can make it shorter, the idea being that you do the substance of your discussion in breakout groups, not in the main session. We just want to raise all the issues, look at the big picture. And then you'll break out into four groups. You all know which time slot you've been assigned to, who your facilitator and rapporteur will be. Thanks very much to the volunteer facilitators and rapporteurs.
And then we will break into those groups. The task of those groups will be to come up with proposals, topics for main session, to also look at the design of these main sessions, if you can. And the scheduling of main sessions, because with a virtual IGF, we are going to have to be quite creative to make sure we schedule the main sessions in a way that is as complementary to the program. And I think that really covers it.
Luis, can you just move a little bit?
Down. Thanks very much. Yes, so that's really it. The Zoom rooms have been created. We won't come back for a plenary. We'll close when you break up into your breakout groups. This will be different from yesterday because you're not going to be automatically clustered into the breakout groups. You have information which has been made available to you to tell you which breakout room you need to join, which breakout room, and which time zone.
So I know that's been a bit lengthy. But any questions on the agenda?
Luis, if you can show the speakers queue. And I'm going to look at the list.
Oh, I have another request for you. I just remembered.
Please, MAG members, can you speak. It's very difficult for everyone, including myself and the secretariat, to follow input in the chat. So I really want to urge you to take the floor, unless you have some reason that you cannot. But just so that we try and keep the discussion in the main body of the meeting. Of course, you can still use the chat session, but I do really encourage you to speak when you want to make inputs.
Okay. I'm trying to see. I see the speaking queue is empty. I'm checking chat. No issues there.
Przemyslaw, I think you are with us again from Warsaw. Good to have you. So welcome to you as well, to our host country for 2021.
>>PRZEMYSLAW TYPIAK: Yes, pleasure being here.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Please, just jump in if you want to say anything, by the way.
I don't see any questions. I assume that our agenda is now adopted and now, therefore, I declare this meeting is open.
>> Anriette, sorry, can I comment?
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Yes, go ahead. I see Ananda has his hand up as well. After you, Ananda. Please, go ahead.
>>ADAMA JALLOW: Okay. Hi. My name is Adama Jallow from The Gambia, long-time MAG member. Sorry, I couldn't get in the queue, as Anriette mentioned. I will just jump in.
It is just a question that I have regarding the breakout sessions that we are going to go straight. I was wondering -- I'm a bit lost on that side -- if Luis could just give us a brief explanation on how we're going to get to our --
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thank you, Adama. It's a very useful question because I know there were questions on the list as well. I know Anja was just responding to them.
Let's first hear from Ananda's question and then, secretariat, if you can respond to Adama's question just to give very clear instructions of how the breakout will happen at the end of Plenary Session III.
>>ANANDA RAJ KHANAL: Thank you, Madam Chair. Ananda Raj Khanal, government stakeholder from Nepal.
Yesterday's agenda there was a topic called "planning," but we didn't discuss planning, IGF planning as such. Is there any time slot that we will be discussing this IGF planning? That's my question. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Ananda, are you referring to planning of the virtual IGF? I mean, everything we're doing --
>>ANANDA RAJ KHANAL: Yes, yes.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: -- is a form of planning the IGF.
>>ANANDA RAJ KHANAL: Many, many issues associated with planning.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: So, Ananda, in your breakout groups today, I think it's in the agenda, if you can begin to look at virtual implications of doing main sessions for virtual IGF, the secretariat and I actually discussed this, this morning.
We thought should we ask you to do more planning for the virtual IGF during this MAG meeting. And we assessed that, and then we came to the conclusion that it's better not to try and pack too much into this meeting. And you know it's a virtual IGF. So when you make the decisions about main sessions, you can take that into account.
Similarly, with the workshops, we still need to look at what will be the second round of vetting.
But we thought we should rather give everyone a chance to absorb some of the ideas and implications of having a virtual IGF. It's a very dynamic discussion going on in the list at the moment about the ideas, the different ways in which a virtual IGF can take place.
So we decided to not put too much virtual IGF planning into this meeting. We can have a call in ten days or so to do that but rather to focus on what the original goals of this meeting were, which was, number one, final selection of workshop proposals, subthemes, and main sessions.
But I'm open to suggestions for us to change that. We will have time tomorrow. I suspect -- because we're making good progress of our work -- that we probably can spend some time talking about it tomorrow.
Any other points on this question? And as I said, I'm encouraging you to speak, not to use the chat.
So I don't see any other hands. Or no one in the speaking queue. Secretariat, can you please respond to Adama's question about giving very clear instructions of how today's breakouts will work.
>>LUIS BOBO: Thank you, Anriette. So I'm going to answer that. So you can see me now.
Basically, all of you -- I'm going to share my screen, okay? Basically, you should have received a link to this document I'm going to share now.
You are seeing it. Here the are four rooms according to the Doodle poll that was done where you were assigned. So the first one is at 4:00 today UTC, then 8:00. 4:00 in the morning for tomorrow and 8:00 in the morning, all UTC. Here we have the facilitators, okay?
So, basically, here there are four links you have to connect to, to attend these meetings. It's like these meetings, so you're just going to click there and then you have access to these meetings, the ones you are assigned here. That's all. Very easy.
The only instructions are for facilitators. This is for Roberto Zambrana, Paul Rowney, and Jutta, Juliana Harsianti. And I don't know the facilitator of group 4. You have to start the meeting. You don't need to do anything special. You should know how to start a meeting. Otherwise, I can private chat with you during this meeting. Basically, you click here but you have to log in with this credential here. And the password I will send to you in the chat.
I know Roberto knows it. Jutta also knows it. Juliana, I'm going to chat it to you. If you have any doubt of starting the meeting, just tell me in the chat today, okay? But you should be okay because you have already hosted meetings before.
And for the rest of the people, you just click on the link and then you access the meeting. The meeting is automatically recorded, and that's all.
I hope that clarifies. Happy to answer the questions in the private chat.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Luis. Any other questions? I don't see any. So on that note, let's start with our plenary.
I'm sorry. Something happened with the agenda. We did add a break that was not here now. At the end of this session, there will be a 10-minute break. It's fine. We will just remind you when it happens.
So at this point, breakout groups, are you ready to report? Let's start today in reverse alphabetical order. So let's start with -- no, in alphabetical order. Let's start with data.
Data, are you ready to report?
Secretariat, we have prepared a summary. Are you ready with that? We have prepared kind of a visual compilation of all your breakout group reports. So if possible, if we can put that on screen.
Maria Paz, if you can get ready to report in the meantime.
>>MARIA PAZ CANALES: Sure.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Secretariat, are you able to do that? Let's just pause a minute. I really have to thank everyone for your diligence in reporting and working. It makes life much simpler for us.
Okay. Maria Paz, please go ahead.
>>MARIA PAZ CANALES: Okay. Thank you very much, Madam Chair.
This is Maria Paz Canales. I am a MAG member, representative of GRULAC region. I am one of the cofacilitators of the data track, together with Chenai Chair.
So we went yesterday to the discussion in the breakout group, taking into consideration all the feedback and comments that we received in the plenary session from the other MAG members, and mainly also taking consideration the order number of the proposal that we were requested to do, that it was increased from the original instruction provided for the first screening. So from 12 sessions that we were supposed to select in the first round, we moved to fif- -- sorry, 17 sessions. That allows us the possibility to go back in some of the decisions that were some kind of contended or not so clear for the rest of the MAG members.
So in that regard, because there was an issue, very polemic yesterday, I want to clarify that we will use the number of proposal mergers. We will be sticking only with one proposal of mergers -- sorry. Here in the screen, there is a mistake, because still in the number 1 say merger with workshop 75, and that is withdrawn. Sorry. It's more clear down where the written explanation is there.
So we are not proposing any merger for the top 10% high-scored sessions in the track. We are just proposing one merger, that it's regarding the session 182 and 318. This is the discussion regarding privacy implication with COVID-19. We think that this session still it's possible to merge with no major difficulties, because each one of the proposal only have three speakers announced. So in logistic terms, it will be relatively easy to try to reach the proposers and to make them to work together. And there is complementarity in the sessions. Both sessions were very good, were high scored. Improving in the report that I did yesterday, now I included also all the scores so the MAG members can more easily check on the (indiscernible) score of the selection that we are proposing to move forward.
We will keep the proposition of moving the workshop 229 as the main session, as we mentioned yesterday.
Can we move down, please.
And from the session, the two -- if we undo the mergers that were proposed yesterday and with the additions already proposed yesterday, we complete a number of 15 sessions. So we were in the position to pick two new ones that previously were in the yellow basket to attempt to the green basket. So we proceed with the same criteria that we did the last time.
Can you scroll down a little bit more, Luis, please, until the yellow part.
So we proceed with the same criteria that we used for the selection of the previous one. We tried to identify thematic gaps in the program for the data track. And according to this criteria, I considered the highest score in the yellow basket. We are proposing now to include two additional sessions, which are the 250, Can Excel sheets have ethics? Governance in Global South. You can see there the score. And the other one that will be included, according to the identification also of this thematic track gaps is the workshop 236 that it's in the -- number 15 in the list, that it's dealing with issues regarding data flow. Because from the previous determination, we just have one session in that subtheme. And now with this addition, we will have two. And also, this was a very -- sorry. Sorry. The new one is not that one. The new one, it's governing cross border data flow and sustainable development. The previous one was the one that I mentioned before. So the governing cross border data flow and sustainable development is the one that will -- I'm sorry. I think, yeah -- is the one that it will increase the diversity of the topic of cross border data issues.
And this one is very interesting, in our opinion, because it's a session that is being proposed and featured a lot of participation from SMEs. And this is a group that, in general, IGF tried to reach and we would like to have much increased participation from them. And it's not always easy to include them. So we think that also because of this reason, it was a very good addition to the program.
It has a main issue that need to be improved, that this session is currently a panel. But one of the member of our groups, Timea Suto, she kindly offered to help us to work on this issue with the group, with the proposer, if the final decision is to keep this session in the program, as we are recommending.
So with that, we will complete the list of 17 sessions proposed from our track, with a question mark about the main session that we are proposing, that if Lianna is not taken by the MAG as a main session, we can still keep it in the track as a session for the track.
And if you scroll down, Luis, you now can see the distribution of the session in the subthemes, which is fairly balanced now. So we have the -- in the different (indiscernible) regionally, you have in the governance dimensions for data-driven technologies, four session; In digital identity, two; in data-driven emerging technologies, four; in data-driven business model, we have two; in data access quality, interoperability, competition, and innovation, we have three.
;And in the impact of digital sovereignty and Internet fragmentation on trust, two.
So that provides a very fairly distribution. And this is our proposal.
Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Chenai and Maria Paz, and everyone else in the group.
Does anyone have any questions for this group?
And, Maria Paz, in response to your question about your main session, we have flagged that for discussion in the main session plenary after this.
So no questions, no comments.
Well, I think shall we try applauding this group for having completed their work?
[ Applause ]
I'm going to try and clap for you. I hope you can see me.
So thanks very much for that. I know it was difficult. And thanks for taking on board the input from the group yesterday.
And now let's move on to environment.
Are you ready?
>>TIMEA SUTO: Yes, I am, Timea here. Trying to find my camera as well.
Here I am. Hi.
So while I'm just waiting for Luis to share the document that we -- that we sent this morning -- here we are.
Thank you, Luis.
So just to give a quick overview of what happened yesterday with the Environment Working Group, I think we finished pretty early, on time, which allowed me to jump into Maria Paz's group and listen in to the second part of their discussion. Thanks for that, by the way, for allowing me to do both.
What we did in the Environment Working Group is, we discussed taking on board what has been said in the main session, how many sessions should we have in this track, if they're -- if they all go through our quality control screening, and how does diversity and distribution of themes look like.
So I took on board the advice from the chair and some of you yesterday that we should make sure that this track is still substantial and we have enough sessions that really make it for a track in the IGF program and that people who feel passionate about the theme of environment in the context of digital issues and the IGF, they are still happy and they don't feel discouraged from applying this in the future.
So with that said, I know that Roberto's calculation gave environment five slots. Ben's calculation gave environment six slots. We advised for 14 slots. It's a bit difficult to find a good number.
But what the team decided is we put forward an ideal scenario of 12 slots, 12 workshops. These pass our quality scrutiny. But we advised the MAG to look through these, and if there needs to be more cuts, then that should be made in the order of -- in the reverse order of the ranking, so taking from the bottom up of cutting one by one.
So how we look like now --
Luis, if you can scroll down for me a little bit.
So we have -- the first four remain our green basket. Those are the ones that we have ranked above a score -- a total score of four. So those should be regarded as our green.
If we go with the sessions for the minimal scenario, we will have to have six workshops. There's no way for us having five, because number 5 and number 6, as you see there, have the same exact score, so there's no way of choosing between them. So we would advise if we have to cut back to the minimum, that would be six.
But going further -- and I'll show that to you when we come to the diversity analysis -- our minimum advice scenario would be to have seven sessions, because that rounds out pretty nicely the diversity and the themes. But as I said --
And if you can scroll down a little bit more -- with the next slide, these are the sessions that we would like to add to those that passed our tests. The light yellow ones are the ones that we see are good as they are. The orange ones we have comments for. But we definitely see all of these as adding new ideas and more diversity to the sessions.
So we put it into the hands of the MAG and you all of how many sessions we should choose, but these are the 12 that we would like to share with you.
In terms of how they cluster into subthemes, the same remain that I presented to you yesterday, and those should be two slides down, Luis, if you may. So this is just our red basket that we discarded. And these are the ones -- the four themes that we -- that we see under the environment track.
I just want to point out that if we go with five or six or even seven sessions, that fourth subtheme track disappears, so session 218 and 231 are in the second half of our yellow basket. So we would -- we would lose those extra perspectives that focus on climate change, misinformation, and knowledge sharing within the track.
And then just to show you really quickly the diversity graphs of how everything looks like, if you scroll down one more for me, please, that should be -- one more.
These are the 12 workshops that we put forward. So this is how it looks like. You see that these touch on all of the tags that the proposers have put forward. There -- the gender balance skews towards -- towards female a little bit, at some point fifty-fifty. And there's a pretty good stakeholder group balance, as much as I can tell. And the regional group is also -- I think that that's the best we can have in terms of diversity, you know, of these tracks.
If you go down one more, you can see here the top six, how it looks like. You can see the gender is skewed into the other -- other angle. There are -- the regional groups are dominated by two, especially, (indiscernible) and Asia-Pacific. And that two themes are missing. But then if you add in that seventh that is our minimal scenario -- and that's one slide down -- so -- and that is my last slide. If you can just move for me. Thank you.
You see how that additional seven actually balances out in terms of gender, in terms of themes, and also gives a little bit of an extra diversity in terms of regions.
So, again, to sum it up, we advise that we have 12 sessions, but if we have to have less, we hope that we can have at least seven. And all the stats are there. And I'm looking forward for the MAG to share with us your thinking on the numbers.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks very much, Timea, and thanks, everyone else.
June, you've asked for the floor. Please go ahead.
>>JUNE PARRIS: Hello. June Parris, MAG member. Also a co-chair for environment.
I wish to reiterate what Timea and the chair said earlier. With environment being a new track, I think we need to be -- have consideration from the MAG to give us at least seven. I personally would love more than that. I would love about ten. So I just wish to add to that with -- and support for Timea in the work that she did, which was very complete. Because we only had such a small amount, we were able to go through them thoroughly so we are sure about the results that we came up with.
And thank you very much, Timea.
>>TIMEA SUTO: Thank you for all the help to the team, June and Karim and everybody on the team. Sorry. I forgot to say that.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Well, thanks very much. And I think -- I think yesterday I recall counting that we would 14 in environment. And I think what you've done, how I understand it, is you've used quality as a measure and you've come up with 12 that you would like to see. And I see no reason at this point to reduce it down from 12.
Is there anyone who would like to suggest that we reduce it? Is there a feeling that it needs to be lower?
I know that we've done the proportional calculation. But is there any MAG member who feels that we should stick to proportional numbers of workshops in the track? Or is there a consensus that we can give environment some additional space because it's a new track?
>>JUTTA CROLL: Anriette, may I speak?
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Please. Introduce yourself and go ahead.
>>JUTTA CROLL: Jutta Croll, MAG member in my third member, from civil society. I'm from Germany.
I do think that in relation to the overall number of 19, 12 is a bit high. But that's my gut feeling.
Also, I acknowledge that it's very important to have the environmental issues on the agenda. So I'm not sure how we can balance these two things. But looking at the statistics -- and they come from the community, the workshop proposals come from the community, so I do think -- if the community really had the feeling that they need to put more emphasis on that, I'm wondering why we only got 19 compared to the numbers of workshops in other tracks.
So I am just not sure how we can balance that. I completely understand what you say, and I've already seen that the group has done a very good job in setting priorities. So I just would like to know how others feel that in this case we would only drop seven out of 19 if we accept 12.
That's my two cents.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Jutta.
And, JI, you've asked for the floor. Please go ahead.
>>ZHAOYU JI: Thank you, Madam Chair. Sorry I have some problem with my camera, so I will speak without the camera.
I would like first to thank all our chairs for different breakout groups for all their efforts.
Regarding the question you posed to us, I got the same gut feeling with Jutta that, you know, the quality and the proportionality might be an important factor that we need to take into account. Otherwise, that would, you know, be a little bit unfair for other -- other tracks.
For the low numbers we have received -- I mean, the total number we have received in the track of environment, I think maybe there is something we need to deal with -- we need to do for next year's meeting.
Make much more efforts to encourage people to think about any proposals in this respect or the related areas. Thank you very much.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks. Thanks very much for that.
>>JUNE PARRIS: I understand what Jutta is saying is a relatively small amount of entries for this track, I suspect that a lot of people who sent tracks in had already decided what they were going to write about. So I believe that environment came as a shock to lots of people.
I suspect that people just thought there would be three tracks this year and had already prepared their proposals. Again, I'm begging, please.
[ Laughter ]
That's all I can say.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: You know, I think -- I'll give the floor to the other speakers. But I think we should also keep in mind, well, that it's new and we know that in the IGF there's a lot of continuity.
It could also be with how we've defined it. "Environment" is quite a narrow definition. In most government and U.N. processes -- and I think for many civil society organizations as well -- "environment" is often defined as part of being sustainable development.
But, you know, the thing is, if we don't have enough sessions in this track, we're not going to be in a position to judge whether there's validity in continuing it or not.
But let's carry on with the speakers queue. Jennifer and then Helani and then Roberto.
>>JENNIFER CHUNG: Thank you, Chair. This is Jennifer. Hope you can see and hear me. Okay.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Yes, we can. We can see and hear you.
>>JENNIFER CHUNG: Thank you. Jennifer Chung, third-year MAG member from the private sector. First, I wanted to congratulate the environment track working group for their good work. It is actually very useful to see the different scenarios and how statistics will fluctuate. It gives us a nice snapshot of how we can make our positions.
Echoing, I think, concerns from Jutta and also Zhaoyu, we have to be very careful when we are saying we are going to favor one track over the other.
But I also want to say that as a new track, we should do -- we should definitely support it because we as MAG did decide this was one of the four tracks. So it's 25% of what we were hoping -- I'm sorry. Let me take that back, not 25%. It is one of the four tracks that we're hoping to focus on for this year.
Another angle I think we can consider is rather than looking at sheer numbers of the workshop proposals, because people might not be so comfortable or they might be curious and a little cautious about submitting a proposal in a brand-new track, we could perhaps put the spotlight on this new environment track in a different way. I'm not proposing a main session. It could be a main session. It could be another way to highlight the importance that we place on this track. So rather than just trying to look at massaging the numbers, I think we should also look holistically and see how we can give the spotlight to this new track in the overall agenda. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Jennifer.
>>HELANI GALPAYA: Thank you, Chair.
Jennifer pretty much said verbatim what I was going to say. I think, given that this was included after the community consultation, then we should also say that the number of proposals that we actually got across all the themes are also reflective of what the community wanted. So playing around with the numbers would actually put all the other proposers at a disadvantage.
But I'm fully on board with the need to encourage this session. And I actually think a main session or some other way to highlight it will spark off a lot of ideas of people saying "oh, God, it didn't address everything I wanted. Next year I am going to come back and propose all these other sessions because I really want this on." Thanks.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Helani.
And, Helani, by the way, it's very nice to have you speak in the MAG meeting.
>>HELANI GALPAYA: I've always been --
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: We would like to see more of you.
>>HELANI GALPAYA: Indeed. I have had too many disturbances in the background every meeting so I have been reduced to typing. So I'm really happy.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: That's fine.
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: Thank you very much, Madam Chair. Good morning, good afternoon, good evening. I'm Roberto Zambrana from Bolivia. I'm a MAG member in the technical community. Yesterday, as you remember, I suggested to Timea's group, which actually did a great job, to increase, not to keep to four but increase one our proposals.
Now that we see, hear explanation, I think it's really valid to keep the four subthemes they were proposing. And that passes over having seven -- seven proposals, which are the best proposals they choose. So I think that's a good number. But I'm not reluctant to increase this number either.
But I think it's important to have the overall looking to other tracks. We need to define the final number that we're going to allow in terms of the different groups. And maybe after that, considering the final numbers of the other groups, too, that we could give another -- another chance to increase.
For now, I think seven is a good number, too. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Well -- so you're opposed to the 12 that they've selected? You are suggesting they reduce it to seven?
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: Until we check the overall composition of the different groups.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Okay. Paul.
>>PAUL ROWNEY: Thank you, Paul Rowney, MAG member. I just wanted also to remind us that the discussion of introducing the environment track is something that arose out of last year's IGF. It was discussed in our face-to-face.
There was a discussion on whether it was a track in its own right or whether it was a cross-cutting issue that would be absorbed in the other tracks. The decision that we made was to set it up as a track in its own right.
That said, we shouldn't compromise the quality of the workshops just to push new numbers because it's a new track. Now, I think we should get the right number. And I'm not going to state my preference. I could do, I guess, but not right now.
But maintain the quality, see how it goes, and let's see how the track evolves into next year to see if we do get more workshops. It might fade away. It might grow. We don't know yet.
There's other forums that deal with environment that might be better forums for this discussion. But, yeah, it's a new track for the IGF. And let's maintain the quality and not try to push quantity. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks very much, everyone, for your input. I see there's some in the chat as well. You know, I know -- because Timea checked in with me on this yesterday.
I know they've not compromised quality. So I think the 12 that they've proposed today are all ones that they feel are good enough and that have scored high enough.
I think we should not reduce it at this point, but I think there is a clear feeling here that if we have to reduce, then we need to relook at this.
I just want to make one additional point to what has been said. I think the main session idea is very important. But I think we should also keep in mind the community. The IGF is a bottom-up process. So we're going to get session proposals from people that come to the IGF. People that are specializing in environmental and ICT and Internet governance issues are probably not represented well enough in our community. And we'll never change that if we don't create an opportunity to invite them.
You know, I'm thinking back of the U.N. Secretary-General addressing the IGF in Paris and talking about the need for multidisciplinary participation as well as multisector, multistakeholder.
And I think if we're not going to create -- it's a carrot and a stick thing in a way. We need sessions in IGF that will attract people from the community. And there are people that are working on technology and environment. And if we don't have the sessions, they're not going to come. And if we don't have the people, we're not going to have the good session proposals.
So I think we need to approach this over a slightly medium -- medium to longer term to really see where this goes and what the demand is for this area of work in the IGF.
I really like the idea of a main session. And I think we've heard from UNEP this week, or last week, in response to the roadmap. Within the U.N. system, they are very concerned with technology as well and digital cooperation.
So maybe we can draw on that for a main session and invite Ms. Andersen, the head of UNEP, to come and speak at a main session.
What I propose now is let's move on. I think the mood in the room is probably divided about whether we should reduce from 12 or not at this point. I think let's leave it for 12 now, and we'll revisit if we have to. So I suggest we move on now. Timea, you wanted to come back and speak, so you can have the last word on this.
>>TIMEA SUTO: Thank you. Thank you, Chair. And thank you to everybody for comments. You're basically echoing the discussion that we had yesterday and the one that I keep having in my head on my own as well.
But just wanted to flag something that I don't want it to be missed. If we cut down to seven, we are losing that fourth subtheme that is on the screen here. So I just want to underline that. We can be creative of how we do that. I think I speak to everybody on the environment team's behalf, if we are called upon to organize again intro and closing sessions or main sessions or anything else to give this theme a better focus or better visibility, count on us to do that.
Let's talk further. And I'm happy to go with what the group decides. Thanks, everyone.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks. Thanks very much, Timea. Thanks, everyone.
We'll look at the numbers as a whole later on in case we want to reopen this discussion.
Thanks very much for your work. So a round of applause --
[ Applause ] .
-- to you as well.
Inclusion, are you ready to report? Paul, are you on standby?
>>PAUL ROWNEY: Yes. Yes, Thank you, Chair. So, yes, we want the quantity. We want all of our workshops included.
Okay. So based on the discussions of yesterday, we looked at the number of 24. We had 18 that we had already identified. We went back, reviewed. Basically we looked at the workshops -- we first looked at all the workshops that scored over 4. And 4 seems to be quite a common benchmark across the different thematic groups. So we elevated all of those 20. Most were already in the 18, in any case.
We then looked a little deeper because this started to skew the balance of the program a little bit. So we looked at the next workshops, which were 21 and 22. And both of these were addressing a similar theme but from different angles. They are addressing education. One was focused on eLearning and how to tackle accessibility challenges online. And the other was more around educational opportunities and challenges in the time of a crisis, such as COVID.
What was interesting is the workshop 107 will was predominantly from GRULAC, and GRULAC was quite heavily underrepresented as a region. And the other one was more towards WEOG. So the general consensus was that we would like them both but on the condition of merger. We can go a little deeper into our thoughts on the characteristics of each workshop that should be merged over.
We then looked at workshop 23 and identified workshop 25. This is the rankings, which are workshop numbers 122 and 20. And, again, these are quite similar. They're both addressing local content and language but came from two different perspectives. One focusing more on building the data sets in the African languages and the other exploring the future of endangered languages, and it cites specifically in cyberspace. There were a lot of commonalities.
Again, we felt both workshops needed to be there but couldn't be there.
And we felt that there is a good case for a merger between workshops 122 and workshop 20. We then looked at bringing balance back because this was scooted a little bit, so we needed to bring balance to availability, affordability, and to design and policy for social inclusion.
And we identified workshop 37 that was addressing community network connectors and digital inclusion for availability, affordability, and access.
And we identified workshop 289 to bring a balance into the design and policy for social inclusion, which was focused on women and the platform economy, access, autonomy, and agency.
So this gave us a very strong list of 24 workshops. We have identified a few as a backup in case some of these might want to pull out. So we actually have five workshops that we've lifted that should be looked at depending on the thematic subtheme that the workshop might decide not to participate to fill that gap. If we look at the stakeholder diversity that this new list of workshops or the amended list of workshops brings us -- and if Luis can just scroll down to the workshop diversity -- it's similar. And in some ways, it's improved. In other ways, it started a little further away. It has increased civil society a little bit, but it is still in line with the overall civil society speakers.
It did increase the technical community and government a little bit. So it is still in balance on the regional perspective. We did increase that a little bit. That's good. And on gender, I was told that this is a better result. So we're on the right side of the line on gender.
The other change we made actually was to our subthemes. This was actually identified yesterday, that our workshops that were lifted into the top including the 24 as they stand now, none are addressing the environment. So we've actually dropped environment from the subtheme number 3, which is on page 1. And the subtheme now is designed on policy for social inclusion.
I'm going to end there. Our document is shared, and the working document is also shared.
And I also want to thank the participants of the working group yesterday. It was a brilliant session. We had a very lively debate and discussion. And I think we all agree that this is the right number for inclusion. And these are the right workshops to be motivated to move forward. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks very much, Paul, and everyone else in your group. Sylvia, you've already asked for the floor.
So, please, go ahead.
>>SYLVIA CADENA: Thank you very much. Sylvia Cadena from the technical community for the record.
Paul, I just wanted to ask you on the governance and policy subtheme, if you could explain what the difference is between the other subtheme that talks about policy? Just trying to figure it out, if they are totally separate or how maybe to combine those two if it's possible, just not to have those two little sessions alone on a subtheme. Of course, if it is totally different, I understand.
But I would like to know more about the differences between those subthemes. Thank you.
>>PAUL ROWNEY: Very good question. And to be honest, I can't think off the top of my head why we have them separate. Maybe Roberto.
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: Yes. In a part, Sylvia, you got the point. What we did was to review the content of the proposals and actually the weight was in the substantial theme rather than the policy aspect. And in other cases, as we were reviewing some other proposals relating with policy also where we -- they were more aimed to a proposal on policy. That's the way that we in some cases assigned those to policy and some others to the substantial subtheme.
That's why we don't have in general terms -- among the 70 proposals, we just have I think only five proposals related with this sixth subtheme of policy.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: In fact, I was going to ask the same question. And I was going to suggest that you actually move those other two workshops into the other groups, maybe into design and policy for inclusion. And the reason is really because the IGF, everything is supposed to be about governance and policy.
In some sense, this MAG hasn't really struggled with this, I think. But I know that in the past, MAGs have had to reject workshop proposals that do not deal with governance and policy that are about project implementation, for example.
So I do think you might want to rethink having a subtheme for governance and policy when you also have a subtheme for design and policy for social inclusion.
I don't know. But aside from that, I think you can think about that. I don't know if anyone else has comments on that. But thanks very much for your excellent work.
Does anyone else have questions for you? I don't see any hands.
>>PAUL ROWNEY: Anriette, I just wanted to just respond. We will definitely take that back to the group. There was a rationale for separating it. I think we will revisit that and make a decision.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: I think just think about it because in a way, I think all your other subthemes are also addressing governance and policy in one way or another. So just think about that.
But thanks very much. And you've come up with a number of 24. So I've been adding up totals. We are now up to 53 accepted workshop proposals.
And if we are ready to say thank you and approve this group, let's move on. So well done and thanks for your hard work.
[ Applause ]
And it seems it's gone relatively smoothly as well. So thanks very much, Paul, and everyone else in this group. And, Trust, are you ready?
>>BEN WALLIS: Yes, good morning, good afternoon, and good evening.
Sylvia might have something to add. I can share what I had on the MAG list yesterday.
And I should say that I'm Ben Wallis with Microsoft, for the record.
And I'm sure that the presentation is coming up on the screen. But I can already start.
So in our breakout yesterday, the trust evaluation group made some slight revisions to the recommendations that we sent previously.
We stayed with the -- with the proportion, so we kind of reduced from 36 to 33 the number that we were proposing be taken forward, which is 41% of the 80 slots that were envisaged.
The workshops are ranked so that the secretariat knows exactly which ones to approve once it's been decided how many slots there are overall and what proportion are allotted to each track. And then that also allows the secretariat to know which workshop to turn to next if one of the approved workshops decides it can't go ahead in a remote IGF setting.
In deciding how to rank these 36, we largely stayed with ranking by the score that they'd received, without focus on quality. But we did decide that we should retain those from the yellow basket, because they'd all been lived up to improve our tracking in various ways. So we took the simple approach of moving the bottom five of our green basket down to the bottom of our list of 36. I say 36 because we've kept a reserve list alongside the 33 we propose to be taken forward.
And moving those -- those five down to the bottom didn't have a negative impact on the balance between the subthemes, as those bottom five, those that were ranked 26th to 30th in our top 30 green basket, they're spread across all of the subthemes except the smallest one.
We -- the major change, I guess, or one other change to mention is that we decided to make one of our workshop proposals a conditional approval. Workshop 81 is about U.S.-China relations. It includes speaker slots for both U.S. and Chinese government representatives. And the proposers had listed a U.S. State Department official as a tentative speaker. But Susan had checked in with the State Department. They didn't recall receiving the request. And given the topic, a potentially contentious discussion, we were concerned that the session shouldn't go ahead with the representative of one government but not the other. So we recommend the workshop be approved, but only once the organizers can confirm to the secretariat that they have confirmed speakers from both the U.S. and Chinese governments.
And, finally, yesterday, for the subtheme structure, we had a table listing all of the workshops in a table format. And during the discussion, we were -- it was discussed whether we could show that with a flow, a logical flow between the different subthemes. So we've done that. I think, if you scroll down the document until it goes from a portrait to a landscape mode, it'll -- that's another change we made. It's not a reallocation of workshops -- keep scrolling -- but it's just kind of additional thinking about how the subthematic structure would work.
Almost there. It's the next page down.
And while we -- that looms into view, too wide for the screen, unfortunately, let me just pass to Sylvia to see if she has anything to add.
Sylvia, luckily for me, is very adept at using spreadsheets, so she was able to keep on top of the stats. We made a good team in that respect.
Sylvia, is there anything you'd like to add?
>>SYLVIA CADENA: Thanks, Ben. No, not really. The stats didn't change that much from the previous report that we provided. And you explained that, and everybody has the report in their MAG books to explore.
The only bit that we might take a look is when those profiles are updated, to review -- when the speakers update their profiles, just to review how the stats play out based on the information that we shared yesterday about universities being listed as civil society and not as technical community. So I think that will probably have a big impact on the -- on how the chats actually look like.
And, yeah, that was it.
Anriette made a question about if it was a requirement to ask people if they are willing to speak before submitting a proposal. And yes. But then there are folks that didn't have their profile already loaded on the IGF website, so there are -- there is another field where people added other speakers that were contacted, according to them, the organizers. We, of course, don't have any way of verifying that. But for whatever reason, they didn't have all of that confirmed.
But, yeah, that's all for me.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Ben. Thanks, Sylvia. And thanks, everyone else in the group.
Any questions or comments for the group?
I don't see anyone asking for the floor.
By the way, I really like your new subthemes.
>> I think for flow --
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Go ahead, Mary. Just introduce yourself.
>>MARY UDUMA: My name is Mary, MAG member on my third year, representing the technical community. But I'm from Nigeria.
I don't have technical question for them, but I wanted to ask whether they're -- whether you had workshop organizers that had gaps in their -- speaker gaps and whether those were identified and whether -- or whether the potential speakers could be contacted or pointed to them to be able to contact them to be speakers.
Just a question.
>>BEN WALLIS: So I don't know if I perfectly understand the question. Thank you, Mary.
>>MARY UDUMA: Sorry if you didn't understand the question. Please let me say it again.
>>BEN WALLIS: Yeah.
>>MARY UDUMA: I'm sorry. I'm sorry.
I'm saying while you are evaluating, because I saw in the inclusion some of the proposals will say that they had to contact some other -- some speakers that they have not yet -- they had gaps.
What I noticed is that there were some of the proposals that there were speakers -- there are gaps in panelist or speaker slots. And if this is yes and they said they will still contact them, is it possible to point out or refer them to some -- or propose to them some speakers that would fit into their proposals?
Just a question.
I don't know whether it is clear or not.
>>BEN WALLIS: Yes, that's clear now. I'm sorry. Because we talk about speaker gaps partly in terms of what types of stakeholder or region are underrepresented, that's a gap. So that's why I got confused, not the way you asked the question.
I don't think we went into that level of detail in our group. With those that didn't score as highly, that scored under four, the yellow basket proposals that were to be lifted up, we did include recommendations of how they might improve their workshop. And that included types of speakers they should aim to invite to help improve diversity. But it didn't go into the detail of suggesting individuals that they could invite to fill gaps.
So I guess --
>>SYLVIA CADENA: Yes. The other thing that I could add to your question, Mary, is that on the comments from the -- the group, the email that will be sent to the workshop organizers, there are comments there from different MAG members about gaps to fulfill. But we took the diversity definition the way that we define it in terms of if they were addressing the three dimensions of diversity. We didn't consider the other things as big gaps, because that's how the definition was drafted and established by the MAG.
So there are some recommendations, especially for the ones that were originally marked as yellow, that, as Ben mentioned, but because we had the largest number of proposals, we didn't went through that level of detail. But I guess when they start confirming, we can also start looking at ways of helping them to improve any aspects of their proposals for their online (indiscernible).
>>MARY UDUMA: Thank you very much.
>>BEN WALLIS: Can I -- This is Ben. I just want to say one more very small thing, Ben from Microsoft.
The image you can see on the screen, with the flow of the subthemes, I would be very happy to provide a slide that has more attractively placed arrows. There was a little bit of an issue once I pasted a PowerPoint into the Word document. And I know it doesn't look very pretty. So that doesn't need to be the final version. But thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Any other questions for this group?
So I think we have to congratulate you. Thanks very much to the old rockers, as they described themselves, Sylvia and Ben, with no offense to MAG members that are younger or older, and to everyone in your group. You had a lot of proposals and you were a big group, and thanks very much for all your hard work.
So I think we can congratulate you and applaud you.
[ Applause ]
I don't see anyone asking for the floor. The secretariat has prepared a slide for us just with the numbers so you can see what the numbers are.
Secretariat, can you bring that up for us, please.
And we have just enough time to finish our session on time.
So that is what we have at the moment. We have 86. We have a distribution of number of workshops per track that is proportional, with the exception of environment. We have maintained quality control, but we have allocated a slightly larger number to environment at this point because it's a new theme and, you know, all of the factors that we have taken into account.
So I think the real question at this point is, do we go with 86 and trust that we might lose some when we ask people to resubmit or submit with their design proposals for a virtual IGF? Or do we want to reduce the numbers? So that's really the question on the table at the moment.
Does anybody have any other -- Chengetai, I mean, secretariat, I'd like you to speak.
I see Jennifer has asked for the floor. But I think it's good to get secretariat's perspective on this as well.
So, Chengetai, can you just comment and give advice at this point.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Anriette, can you hear me?
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Yes.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: As I said, it is the mandate of the MAG to come up with the schedule and program as far as the sessions are concerned. So it's all fine, just as long as the costs for holding it aren't that exorbitant. And since it's online, it's not going to be that exorbitant.
The participants are happy with it, that we don't get, you know, any Zoom fever, I think there was a quote from yesterday, and we lose a lot of participants halfway through the program because it's too heavy. And the attendance statistics that we have from this meeting will also be good, because that is what we are measured upon. And as, you know, there are a few competing initiatives out there, so we should still maintain those strong statistics.
But we're just here to do what -- to share the advice of the MAG, and we'll give that advice to the Secretary-General's office and see what he says. But he normally follows the advice of the MAG.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks for that, Chengetai.
And, Jennifer, Jutta, Paul, and Roberto, please take the floor, but can you try to be brief so we can finish our session on time on the half hour.
>>JENNIFER CHUNG: Thank you, Chair. I will be very brief, just in direct response to your question to us.
I think that, you know, we can't go for a number in the hopes that some people would drop out. We definitely need to go for a number. And if people drop out, then they drop out and we adjust, you know, our schedule in that manner.
I don't want to delve too much into the discussion that I think we are probably going to have regarding the virtual format of the IGF, but just to say that -- just to highlight that we do have the luxury of time if we are creative.
So I think that's all I wanted to add. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks. Thanks, Jennifer.
>>JUTTA CROLL: Yes. Thank you for giving me the floor. Jutta Croll, MAG member in my third year for civil society. I'm from Germany.
I do think that, first and foremost, we need to look for quality of the proposals. I do think all the groups have now done a very good job in ensuring that the best-scoring proposals ended up in this list of 86. Also, we cautioned at some point, like we did in the trust group with that proposal with Chinese and U.S. government representatives, it would only be really good if they are both showing up there.
So with regard to the second round of vetting that we need when we get back to workshop proposers, asking them whether they will be willing to run a virtual session at the IGF, I do think the MAG should dedicate some time how we will deal with that. Obviously, if you get back that your proposal is accept for the global IGF, you will be very happy and say, "Okay. I will cope with the situation that it's a virtual session." And then afterwards, difficulties may just occur to you.
So I do think we should take some time with the MAG to develop some guidelines for workshop proposers how to best deal with that situation that it will be a digital, a virtual session at the IGF so that they can take a proper decision whether they are really up to run that session and they're not just let's hope that some will drop out, but let's hope that most of them will find a good way to stay in the program and have a good-quality session.
That's my two cents. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Absolutely. Because our job remains that it's good event with quality sessions.
Paul, go ahead.
>>PAUL ROWNEY: Paul Rowney. I just wanted to add to what has already been discussed as well. I don't think we can say a number right now. There's still other variables that we haven't concluded on. It really comes down to retaining people, keeping their interest. That comes down to how many days we run the IGF over, how many tracks we're running, how many of these workshops are running virtually in parallel, how many hours we're going to spread this over a day.
There is a risk that we have too much. We've got -- in addition to this, we've got the main sessions. We've got the dynamic coalitions. We've got the open forums. We've got day zero. We've got other sessions that are also running. It's a packed program.
Is 86 the right number? I don't know. I don't think we can make that call. But once you add everything together, it's a lot. And we might end up losing people, confusing people, diluting participation. It might take us in the wrong direction. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Paul.
And do you have a proposal though? Or you're just expressing some concern at this point? Or are you saying you'd like us as the secretariat to prepare what this would look like? How many of these sessions are 90 minutes, how many are 60 minutes.
>>PAUL ROWNEY: That -- that's not what I'm saying. We need to get a better understanding. How many main sessions are we having? How many DCs, open forums? How many other sessions? How are they running in parallel? How many days are we planning to run this over? They are all material, I think, to concluding on this number of workshops because it has to fit into the overall. And right now we're just looking at one portion of the overall IGF without looking at the rest.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Sorry. I'll continue with the speaker line.
I just want to respond to Paul. I think that's very wise, Paul. And maybe we can consider giving these provisional approval and not only based on a second round of vetting but also based on the design. Or we want to wait before we communicate the final decision of the MAG to the workshop proposers until we are a little further along with the design of the overall event. So I think that's very useful input, Paul.
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: Thank you, Madam Chair. Roberto Zambrana from Bolivia, MAG member.
I agree with most of the things that have been said. But I would like to make a suggestion about the communications with the proposers. I think it would be good to explicitly say that we accepted their proposals but maybe we can do it like that, not that -- not to the whole 86 proposers but to the ones that we already selected in the first round of the presentations we made.
I think we're going to have a number of around 60 of the first round we made. And we know that those are very good-quality proposals, and I think it would be good to tell them that they were accepted.
And, of course, that in this case we're going to have a virtual IGF. So they made all the preparations and to receive their final acceptance going in this new -- in this new virtual way.
The others, the remaining -- let's say the remaining 26 that we already know that we went to go a little bit more about the quality, the things that maybe in some cases could be improved, perhaps we could tell them that initially we considered your proposals and that we will need maybe -- maybe we could even suggest the things that we already looked at as not problems but things they could improve and tell them. And also, of course, to tell them we're going to have a virtual -- a virtual IGF and to adjust to this.
And, finally, there are some other mergers also. And, of course, in those cases, we need to tell them that they have to consider if they agree with the mergers.
And that could be good if we have that kind of communication. And after that, we will receive all the confirmations and maybe we could look to the numbers again, seeing how are we going to allocate them in the overall program. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks. Thanks, Roberto.
I have a question for clarification, but I'll raise it later.
Timea, you were next.
>>TIMEA SUTO: Thank you, Chair. Just to add to the points that were mentioned before, I really agree with Paul and Roberto and others who have spoken before, that we need to see the entire program to be able to make a decision on the numbers. I think that is very important, that we -- we know also how many DC, NRI, open forum, special session, premier event, main session, or anything else that we have in the program.
There might be creative ways to work with this. NRIs might want to work in different time zones than the main part of the program. There's an issue there.
People might want to still have pre-events and after-events that are not part of the actual program. That might also happen.
But what we need to be able to provide to the people that we identify what we want on their sessions with their proposals and their workshop is really what kind of support are we prepared to give them. Because I think if we go to them with a question: Do you still want to have your session? I think it's a pretty quick and rash answer that people will say, "Of course, I still want to have my program. That's why I proposed it." People will want to know why -- what was it that was that's needed there. How is an online session run? Who will be the technical facilitator? What platform will be used for it? Is there interpretation or not? How can people engage? It's a lot more that is in the background. And how much of that can we really provide? Because Luis is a magician, but there's only one of him. So we only need to know how much is there for us to provide. And that can also help us make a decision on is it 86 or is it 4.
[ Laughter ]
So we really need to think about that. And then there is also a point that I think Hana raised in the chat that is very relevant. I think if we want some consistency in the program, we might want to also discuss the length of the sessions. And that also needs to be communicated consistently to the organizers. Are we allowing anybody to go with 90 minutes, 60 minutes? They are choosing? Are we choosing? We need to be able to think about all these things together before we make a decision.
So this is a really good provisional list, and I applaud all my colleagues for the great work done in selecting the workshops. But I think we do need to consider everything together. And before that, I would caution us not to reach out to the organizers just yet.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Timea. All very useful input.
>>PAUL CHARLTON: Yes. Can you hear me?
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Yes, Paul, we can hear you.
>>PAUL CHARLTON: Okay, good. I've been listening carefully to the discussion. My own, I guess, personal preference is to err on the side of having maybe a slightly smaller, more concise program. I agree with what a lot of Timea and others have said about we need to proceed carefully and not rush to make judgments about a particular number.
I was particularly struck by what Jennifer said at the beginning of the conversation when she said that whatever number we pick, it has to be a number we're comfortable with and we cannot and should not assume that we will end up with a lower number because some people will drop off because they won't be able to do their sessions virtually.
That may be -- that may well be the case. But I do think we need to be comfortable with the number up front. So I just wanted to weigh in on that. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Paul.
>>NEBOJSA REGOJE: I actually put my hand down. Okay. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Okay. Secretariat, is there anything in the chat that we need to -- that's important, or is it all related to what we've said already?
Chengetai has just shared the numbers. By the way, these have not been vetted yet. But, yes, there were 31 open forum applications, 45 day zero, 72 IGF village booths, 16 dynamic coalitions, and seven NRI meeting requests.
So there's quite a lot. And I think we need to -- we need to put all of that into our basket and discuss what to do with it.
So my take-away from this is -- I have one question, though, before I will try to summarize the key points that came out of this.
And, Roberto, this was in response to you. You were talking about sessions that we wanted to give them suggestions for improvement. My assumption actually is that unless there is really an exception, like the exception we heard of from the trust track, is that you've approved proposals that you don't think need improvement. I think if you have proposals in your slate that need improvement, I think you might want to rethink whether you're including them or not. Because my assumption is that you really have taken only those that you feel are really, really very good.
So I'm just -- I just want to check in on that. If there are workshop proposals that you feel need improvement, I would advise the groups to perhaps reconsider.
I guess, what you have done is to try and have subtheme balance. So we don't have to dwell on that now. But I do think at this point, we really want to ensure quality as being really the primary measure.
Maria Paz and Sylvia, if you can go quickly. And then I will just try to summarize the key points that came out of this, Maria Paz, do you want to speak? Go ahead.
>>MARIA PAZ CANALES: Thank you very much, Madam Chair. This is Maria Paz Canales, civil society representative from GRULAC.
My comment, it's only to make a suggestion in terms of how to confirm they're still interested in some of these activities. And I would like to use the example of what is going on with the organization of RightsCon that was also mentioned in the email thread about this virtual organization of the IGF.
I think we shouldn't assume that for all the other activities, like the zero-day events or the booths, everyone will keep the interest that they originally manifest considering a physical, in-person IGF. So I think saying they did it in RightsCon in the first stage, to more fairly assess the scenario, it would be to send a message to those and ask them to confirm if they are still interested in the scenario that we are setting for the IGF. Then we can work with a number that is updated to the current situation and take it from there.
And I will reiterate something that was said in the thread in terms of the needs of, like, finding a bond-back structure for the time, allocation. Also follow the example of RightsCon in terms of that for the flexible time schedule, to ask the organizers of the group to self-identify what would be the time zones that would better suit them and provide them the responsibility to organize with their session participants, with their speakers, and everything. That worked very smoothly because in that way, you distribute the responsibility of identifying the times and reduce the workload of the secretariat that would be very heavy. So I will leave it there. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks. Thanks, Maria Paz.
>>SYLVIA CADENA: Hi. Thanks. It's Sylvia Cadena, MAG member, technical community in my third year.
Well, first of all, thank you very much, Chengetai, for putting the numbers on the chat. That is very useful. I think it is very important to us. My colleagues have expressed to reconfirm interest.
I have always been very taken, let's say, by the fact that in reality all of the -- the force of the MAG to select workshop proposals normally don't even account for even half of the program of the event. So I am always pushing for having open forums reduced considerably. Those efforts have not been very successful over the years.
But maybe this year is an opportunity to take that a little bit more seriously.
If you look at a little file that I shared earlier today, I was playing a little bit with time zones and trying to figure it out, how it would look like if it was not having a little Zoom fatigue, not having full nine hours' days and things like that. And taking it slowly, using 90 minutes and 120 minutes for main sessions and not even counting everything that was there, I got to 11 days of activities. So -- over 24 hours and spread around five different time zones.
So it is humongous if we are thinking about all of these numbers of sessions. So confirming interest is very important. The earlier we can do that, the better. Even if the language on the message saying -- tempting the waters, that say to try to figure out what they are, right?
The part that doesn't really worry me is the booths, independently of how it is managed in the end. Last year they did quite -- they did quite a lot of effort, the secretariat, to ask the booths not to -- and the German host to not print materials. So there was, like, a little page on the shared app where they could load all their materials and things like that. So it could be simple things like that or videos, so they can have the little page where they put all that information in, and that kind of like box ticked in terms of having booths and things like that.
But I think the NRIs' collaboration sessions, it is important they check really, really what they need and the same for everything else. Because if you look at those -- it's really a lot of sessions when you add one thing after the other. It's a lot of time to try to accommodate what lots of people said about not having a full day, having breaks in between, having main sessions for all of the thematic tracks. And then a few others that were mentioned. So I made some rough calculations, but it's pretty full on.
[ Laughter ]
So when you look at that, it's pretty full on. So, yeah, just -- we have a lot to consider. And it's always -- like, in the last couple of years, we have given the selection process to the secretariat, kind of like our work is done, sort of. And then they manage the communication with the organizers. They put together those spreadsheets to try to figure out where all the -- how the puzzle fits.
This is -- this is a puzzle that's going to take a lot of minds to solve. And I think we need to -- when we say "get creative," it's not that easy. But, anyway, just a -- thinking while I'm talking.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks. We're going to come back to that. We're not dealing with those things yet. But it's good to begin preparing for dealing with those other formats.
Lianna, you will be the last person to speak in the segment. We are canceling the break because we are running late. And then we will be back on track.
>>LIANNA GALSTYAN: Thank you very much. Lianna Galstyan speaking, civil society, third year in the MAG, Armenia.
I'd like to have some clarity on what we've been speaking about, a second vetting, et cetera. So I'd like to know how that would look like for us as MAG members. Will we go through all the workshops again or giving the proposers a second chance of changing their proposals and coming up with new things, how they are managing the online, the virtual meeting.
And, also, I would support the idea of preparing some guidelines for these proposers because they didn't know actually to deal with the virtual one.
They had an interaction for the online participant. But since everyone now will be on this online platform, they would consider it carefully about the moderators.
But I'd like to know for us as MAG members, how would we do the process? How long will we -- I mean, we're gathering the information in the chat and the track that you are starting and creating a mailing list. But it would be good for us also to know when will be the decision made. I guess it's not at this meeting in these couple of days.
But, anyway, some clarity with that on our further work will be appreciated. Thank you.
Also program duration, also. Like, when will we come up with the decision for how long, the duration of the overall meeting.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks very much, Lianna, everyone.
So this is -- We have a big achievement. We have agreed on workshops, but there are quite a few "buts" for us to consider.
So I think the first point is that many of you are pointing out that we need to look at the overall design and that it's very difficult to -- There's a feeling that 86 is too many or that it's a lot. And then, I think quite correctly, we shouldn't settle on a number if we aren't prepared to deal with that number.
So what I sense here is that we need to do a little more work on the overall design of the event, and then we'll be in a better position to judge on whether we can actually accommodate 86 or not. So that's one thing.
We need to look at the other formats, the Day Zero events, the open forums et cetera.
I think Maria Paz's point is very, very important. You know, most people who organize Day Zeros do that because they are taking advantage of the fact that people are together physically for a global IGF. So they might very well not want to do that if they can't -- if they can't benefit from that. So I think that this is -- it's really good for us, the secretariat, for you to look at this. And we might want to just ask everyone who has submitted a proposal so far for the non-workshop sessions if they still want to go ahead. So we need to look at that. I suspect there will be quite a dramatic change.
And then we need to look at how much support and what support we can give to these sessions.
And I think, Timea, my takeaway from what you are saying is that we need to be clear on that before we enter into the second vetting process. We need to first establish, number one, more or less what is the design of our event, over how many days, you know, what time zones, and we need to have some certainty on what our capacity is to support those sessions. And that raises other questions, such as do we outsource support? Or do we -- do MAG members volunteer to support sessions? So there are all kinds of questions there we need to look at related to overall design and administration of the virtual IGF.
And then I think the vetting, we need to start talking about what's involved in this vetting.
I think, Lianna, your point is very important. And what I'd like to suggest, we don't want to just give it back to the Workshop Process Working Group, they've worked so much already, unless they are raising their hands and volunteering. But what I suggest is that we do some brainstorming on the list. We can create a subject thread for that, for the second vetting process. And then if there are some MAG volunteers who'd like to work on what that would involve, I think that would be very useful, particularly people who have had some experience recently in organizing virtual events.
And then I think finally, and also taking this from Lianna's last intervention, we need to revise our time line. So our time line needs to shift a little bit now, in fact, maybe more than a little bit. And I think that after this meeting and before we have our next MAG call, and -- we can work with the secretariat to revise what that time line is like. So, in fact, I'm proposing at this point, and I -- secretariat, let me know if you think this is okay -- that we delay communicating our decisions to the workshop proposers until we've had our next call. Because by the time we have our next call, we'll probably have a better sense of the time line and of the overall parameters of what the virtual IGF will be like.
So I don't see any speaking requests.
>>MARY UDUMA: Hello. Hello.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Yes, Mary. Go ahead.
>>MARY UDUMA: I did put -- I did click the speaking queue. I don't know why my (indiscernible) is not sharing. Sorry that I'm intervening like....
First, I want to say that the number 86 looks large for me. I don't know how we are going to cover that. And, again, as we said when we were doing the presentation, if we do statistics on the percentages of proposals we had as against the number that we are approving, I think there would be some of the tracks that we need to adjust for.
And yesterday, (indiscernible) we are talking about (indiscernible), so why do we have to go to 86? That's one.
And the other thing is, if we put side by side with -- like others have said, then it will give us a better eye view of what we are coming with. What I mean by that is, if we say a workshop, 86, the other -- or the other activities, open forum and so on, so put them side by side and see whether there are -- you know, (indiscernible) to take a decision. So for me, 86 is large. We should look at it and see what we can do and get back to.
The 80 was a bit better for me, because I don't know whether we have all the resources in terms of technical to be able to run 86 workshops and how many of them can we run from our -- in terms of the support that we need, technical support that the secretariat will need to be able to do all that.
So that's what I'm saying. I don't go with the 86 number. I think it is large.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks. Thanks for that, Mary. But we can't change that number now. Because if we change that number now, it means that the groups need to go back.
So I think let's stay with this number now, but with the awareness that there's concern about the number. Let's look at the design of the event. Let's look at the vetting process. And then we'll look at that.
I think if any of the groups feel that there's a workshop that they've put through that doesn't deserve to be put through, then it shouldn't be there. But I trust, actually, that you've already done that, you've applied the quality criteria. So I think that if these are 86 good sessions, that's a number that we have on the table now that's been approved, I think let's not worry too much about that now. We'll be able to assess that number better when we have a better idea of what the design of the virtual IGF will be like.
If you think that, you know -- we also can look at it from the 65 that we had last year. But also, I think, as Sylvia and Maria Paz have pointed out, we might have fewer other sessions. So let's not panic about this now, but let's pause before we give proposers final confirmation.
We also need to think about the vetting process.
And I just want to -- I haven't been able to follow everything in the chat, but I saw one comment in the chat that I think it's worth noting at this point. And that is that we will probably have to have another MAG meeting, maybe not a three-day meeting like this, but something that's more than just a call. I think, Jennifer, that was your point. And I think that is -- it's important to note that.
But let's not feel too panicky, either. IGFs have had large numbers of workshops before, and often the constraints have been physical constraints. And, you know, once we look at what our IGF looks like, we might feel a little bit differently about this or we might feel that we have to cut the numbers. And then we'll come up with a way of doing that.
I think work for us to start in the next week is the second vetting process and the revised time line and to begin to look at what support we can provide and what support we need for a virtual IGF. But we can't deal with all of that today.
So I think on that, I'd like to close this plenary. I don't want to close it with people feeling anxious about the 86. I think feel positive about the fact that there are 86 good sessions that have been approved.
And if the number turns out to be too big, and it might, we'll find a creative and constructive way of dealing with that.
So we don't have time for a break, but thanks very much, everyone. This is a huge -- a huge chunk of work that you have just (indiscernible). So feel good about it. Celebrate.
>>ADAMA JALLOW: Hi, Anriette. Sorry. Can I come in?
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Yes, go ahead.
>>ADAMA JALLOW: Sorry. I've been trying to get to the queue, but because of Internet issues, it's just flipping.
Thank you for giving me the floor, Chair. I just wanted to give my opinion regarding the whole matter of the 86 workshops.
I believe the 86 workshops is okay for me and that we can or should be able to accommodate that. But we have to really clarify on a few things that is regarding stretching the workshop -- the meeting days. We haven't really talked about or we haven't really considered coming to conclusion, if we are doing more than four days as the physical meeting, will we stretch it into two weeks or more than that.
I think if you have a conclusion on that, it would be very essential in this case to really know how to accommodate all of this or if we have more workshops that we want to accommodate.
And the other point is also to try to reach out to the organizers and organizers to make sure all of them are able to adapt to the virtual meeting as the prior initiated for us to do it physically. So it's important to know so that at the end of the day we would know if some might be able to adapt to it or if there might be dropouts.
But all the case, there should be a backup, that is like to have -- I think Arsene and Jennifer mentioned that in the chat, there should be -- there can be a waiting list if there are dropouts if organizers feel they can't adapt to a virtual meeting.
These are a few points that I wanted us to really look and put into consideration. But for me, the 86 workshops is quite okay and we should be able to accommodate that.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Adama. That's good. I'm glad that some people feel comfortable with the number. And I recognize that some people don't.
I think that -- I mean, my sense is that there's some anxiety. So what I want to do now, just to help us cope with that, is to ask for volunteers. You know, if there -- I know you've all worked hard, and I know the Workshop Process Working Group has worked incredibly hard. But can I ask people that want to work on this vetting process about how are we going to communicate to proposers that we want them to tell us how they're going to run their -- their session virtually, and also beginning to try to establish what type of support we need to provide to them, can I ask people that are willing to work on this to just put their names in the chat. And then secretariat can note it down. And then maybe that will give us a little bit of a reassurance that we -- that there will be some amongst us who begin to apply their minds and time and energy to what is clearly a concern for us.
So people that would like to, that are willing to volunteer to work on second-round vetting and establishing, you know, what support we need to give workshops -- this is about workshops, not about virtual IGF as a whole. This is specifically about workshops -- please put your names in the chat.
Okay. You can carry on doing that, and I am now going to close the session on workshops and congratulate the MAG, IGF 2020, for your work. So well done, everyone, and it's actually been very impressive.
So we can't have a break. We've gone on too late. I'm really sorry.
So now we are going to discuss main sessions. I know we're not going to be able to take the issue of the virtual IGF away from our thinking. And that's good. You know, we can consider that.
So now we are going to continue until half past 3:00, 15:30 UTC. We do need to be efficient in our time.
The purpose of this session is to look at which main session ideas are already on the table, to come up with new ones, to look at what we can and can't do, and also to begin to look at how we want to approach the introductory and concluding sessions.
We're going to have some discussion in plenary. Secretariat will put a slide up for us. But then you're going to break out. And you'll be able to have this discussion in new breakout groups and in time zones that are hopefully not too tough for you.
But let's just look at where we are now, what we are starting with.
So, secretariat, if you can just put that slide that you've prepared up for us, please.
This is just -- this slide summarizes what's come out of the open consultation discussion and what has emerged from the MAG thus far this year, previous discussions as well as the suggestions from the trust -- sorry, the data track for one of their workshops to be converted to a main session.
So let's just hang on a sec.
Luis, are you looking for it?
>>LUIS BOBO: Anriette, yes. It's over here. Update on the state of preparations?
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: It's the slide that Chengetai prepared --
>>LUIS BOBO: Yes, yes, yes. It's here.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: We prepared it this morning.
>>LUIS BOBO: Yes. And it was uploaded, so this is strange.
Give me one moment, please. I'm going to put it --
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: I'm sure everyone needs -- if people need to take a short little bathroom break.
Did you manage to find it, Luis?
>>LUIS BOBO: I'm working on it.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: I think I've got it here.
>>LUIS BOBO: Here it is.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Good. Otherwise, I can share my screen.
>>LUIS BOBO: Okay.
It's here. I'm going to open it now.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Okay. Great.
>>LUIS BOBO: Okay. It should be this one.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: That's it. That's it.
Thanks very much, Luis.
So, everyone, what you're seeing in front of you now are just -- these are the main session ideas we've started with. In fact, a new one emerged today, which is the one on environment.
Though the one is the main session proposal that Roberto and Karim and others have been working on since January. And their latest definition of that is to call it committed actions, or definitive or committed actions for enacting and enabling the remaining billions.
And then from the open consultation, there was this, I think, very strong input that we need some kind of main session for dealing with the digital roadmap, digital cooperation roadmap. And that ongoing discussion about IGF Plus and IGF as a platform for digital cooperation.
Then there was a proposal to look at emerging issues -- and that came from ISOC -- particularly in the light of the sort of Internet way of networking, different ways of approaching new and emerging issues.
And then there's the NRI session, which they had a lot of consultation to come up with their proposal for a 2020 main session, which was to look at the role of the Internet in emergency situations.
And then we've heard from the Data Workshop Evaluation Group that they had a workshop which was a very big picture look at how things have shifted around data governance. And they felt that would work better as a main session.
And then just to flag here, I think if you're not aware, just to remind you, I know that Wai Min is probably with us, he may want to add something on this, but we can assume that the specific pandemic issues will also be dealt with in the high-level sessions, which would have been organized by the host country, but which will now be organized in partnership with U.N. agencies.
So I'm -- just look at the next slide for me, please. Thanks. Thanks, Luis.
The second slide.
Okay. So the second slide disappeared of this one. That doesn't matter. I think the second slide had just other considerations that you needed to think about in terms of the main sessions, and that I think, if I remember correctly, that was introductory and concluding sessions.
You did that last year. And I think the feedback was very positive, that having these thematic introductory and concluding sessions worked very well.
And then the other thing I just would like you to consider in this plenary discussion, but also in your breakout groups, is the impact of having a virtual IGF on main session scheduling and design. You know, just, for example, we want to make sure that main sessions don't clash or that they are not in time zones that are completely inaccessible to large numbers of people.
So you don't have to go into that in too much detail now, because we still have to look at design. But just to put that into detail.
So on that, I'm opening the floor for general discussion and input. And, Luis, you can go back to the first slide, please.
Anyone ready to request the floor? Any ideas or reactions? Remember, you'll talk more about this in your breakout groups. But just to get us going at this point, any inputs?
Jutta is asking if this slide is available. Yes, it's in the repository. And I'm sure that Luis will make sure that you can all see it, Jutta.
Sylvia, you have the floor.
>>SYLVIA CADENA: Thank you, Anriette. I think that having a main session associated with the work of the tracks is very important. I can see on the proposal for -- from Roberto and Karim that that is associated with the inclusion track. So it would be really good to add that note or that information on the slide that you have there or information for the MAG members to discuss during the breakouts. The same with the one for data, for example. So that means that there are a couple of sessions that are already in the same spirit of the conversation we had earlier around the environment track, to have those sessions.
The organization of that main session is full on because it has to have high-level speakers and that is a challenge. So it is important to be open to the input of more MAG members to assist in that process. And that is quite a remarkable amount of work that is required for that. And I just don't want the MAG to -- especially new members to not consider that. I'm not sure about the ISOC emerging issues. I haven't -- I don't think I've seen any document or anything that they have submitted.
Normally main sessions are proposed by MAG members. So it would be really good to see who from the MAG is proposing this and on what track or how it will work because ISOC will have to work with MAG in the organization of the session. I don't think it will -- it will work if -- as a main session if ISOC is not consulted with the MAG in the design of that main session.
So in terms of the introductory and concluding sessions, I think that one of the advantages of having it happening online is that there will be more work on the preparatory part. So it will be probably a lot easier to get recordings and the pitch that we did last year for what different topics were going to be covered in different sessions, to be able to structure shorter sessions. It was an hour, I think, last year. So it's quite a very packed and short session.
On the little draft that I shared earlier today, one of the proposals that I was thinking was that those sessions could be repeated in different time zones, if we go with the idea of the 24 hours. So I think (indiscernible) and the concluding bits are common no matter where you are. So that link to pitch for sessions and to gather the key messages gives you that time.
And then having the chance, a little bit more time to come up with the reporting in the key messages that last year poor Wim and Wai-Min were chasing the safety and stability -- the SSR track. It was very difficult to collect everything and give it to them on time. So being online, a lot of the recommendations, the preparatory work will be easier to organize. And I think those sessions are very important, and they need also MAG volunteers to host them. By "host them," I mean organize them, not the technical part, so to convene them and organize them and think about them.
So we had some guidelines done last year, and there are some things that could be improved. But they were very -- again, they are a lot of work. Yeah, thanks.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Sylvia.
Just to give you clarification, yes, main sessions are organized by MAG. But I think it's not unusual for in the open consultation process for proposals for main sessions to be made.
ISOC made this proposal in their input, the prerecorded input, that they provided to the open consultation. In fact, I can't remember it in detail now. But it's not just about emerging issues. It might be -- one might be able to integrate that with some other main session. It's just that I think it's important for the MAG to look at the proposals that were received and to consider whether you can accommodate them in some way or another. I think it was in the Konstantinos' video input that that proposal was made.
Okay. We have -- next, we have Ananda, then Jutta, and Timea. Ananda, you go ahead.
>>ANANDA RAJ KHANAL: Thank you, Madam Chair. This is Ananda Raj Khanal, MAG member from Nepal.
So out of these five suggested, possible main sessions, I think the first one, the definitive/committed actions for connecting and enabling the remaining billions, this issue has been greatly accepted by most of the countries in the world through different U.N. agencies like ITU and other agencies. And it has already come in terms of different ITU resolutions. So I don't think that it requires further discussions in the Internet Governance Forum as a main session.
So, that said, digital cooperation and the Secretary-General's report on the roadmap for digital cooperation is a very timely topic that should be discussed as a main session.
Emerging issues related to Internet governance is quite acceptable.
Role of the Internet in emergency situations has been widely discussed. There are reports from ITU. But a special focus on the pandemic could be an interesting topic to be discussed.
And, yes, of course, the workshop session 229 has been accepted by most of the members for the main session.
Besides that, it is my strong feeling that at least there should be -- you know, some kind of overview of the four main tracks in the main session that covers the entire gamut of issues that will be discussed through different forums like workshop or NRIs or BPFs and all those things.
These four tracks would be included. That is my feeling for the main session. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Yes. I think particularly if there are many workshops, it's really important that they feed into the tracks, into giving participants a sense of "These are the themes" and this is what went into those themes and what's coming out of them.
Next we have Ben.
>>BEN WALLIS: Thank you, Anriette. And thanks to the secretariat for already drawing up the slide for us to look at today.
I won't go into topics that should be covered by the main sessions because presumably that's something what you want us to spend time on during the breakouts.
I guess it was just to try and get a little more sense of what we're looking to achieve. So specifically the number of sessions. I agree it makes sense to have one for each of the four tracks. I already supported the idea of having some kind of session on the IGF Plus elements of the roadmap.
I wonder whether there are now guaranteed slots for NRIs and DCs. I know that's something that was done over the last couple of years. Do we make sure -- I guess this all kind of feeds in. Is there a number that we are going toward? Is it 10? Is it 8? And are some of those slots already taken up, for example, by NRIs, DCs, the agreement to already have a main session on that inclusion topic that Roberto and Karim have proposed?
So it might be that we've got a limited number of slots to fill. So that was kind of part of the question.
Another thing -- and maybe you want us to discuss this -- the length of the main sessions has varied over the last years. And I think we've got a bit a three bears and Goldilocks situation because three years ago, they were three hours long and it was felt too long. Two years ago it was a compressed schedule, so they were 90 minute, 80 minutes long, and that was felt too short. And last year, they were two hours long and I felt they were just about right. So I don't know whether we should discuss length of sessions or whether that's been already decided as well.
Yeah, so partly questions for clarification and guidance on what you want us to focus on in the breakout session. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks. Thanks, Ben. That's very useful actually because I think at least two of the things that you've just said stand out for me as useful for you to talk about in your breakout session. And that would be the number of main sessions that you feel are realistic and then the length of time.
You've all been in online meetings a lot so you can speak about the length of what a main session should be from experience. We know that main sessions are tough in the IGF. They don't always work well. So that's all very useful. And, yes, please do pick up on those things in your breakout groups.
On the NRI, the status of the NRI session, Chengetai, can you just update us on that? My understanding is that -- I know there has been some dissent around that in some years. It has become the standard part of the IGF. That's my understanding, that there is a NRI main session.
Chengetai, can you just reflect on that, please?
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Yes, exactly. The NRIs have become a very large part of the IGF intersessional process, so to speak. And over the last four years, they have had a main session.
Yes, it is true that not all MAG members have always been 100% in agreement that they should have a main session. But of the ones that I have attended -- I think I have attended all of them, in fact -- have been very well-attended. And, also, it's just one of those ways of integrating the NRIs into the main global IGF, which we have been asked to do through various resolutions and recommendations.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Yeah. That's my understanding as well. I know that there's still some issues around that. But I think that -- that doesn't mean MAG can't give creative input into how those sessions are managed.
But I do think it has become a mechanism that is used to help integrate the NRIs with the global IGF.
>>JUTTA CROLL: Yes, thank you, Anriette, for giving me the floor. Jutta Croll, MAG member in my third year for civil society. I'm from Germany.
First of all, I'm speaking in my capacity as a co-facilitator for the dynamic coalitions. And I wanted to add to the list the main session proposal that the dynamic coalitions already issued during open consultations with our presentation.
Dynamic coalitions are working on that main session proposal (indiscernible). And I hope in the next MAG meeting or MAG call, dynamic coalitions will be able to present that.
I also think that given the fact that we have now a list of 86 workshops in four different tracks but, still, I do think not all MAG members have had the opportunity to have a look at all those workshop proposals that are now provisionally accepted in the tracks that they have not been working on. So I just managed to assess my 50 and then the other 49 in the second trust -- or first trust group. But I have not had the time yet to look at the proposals in inclusion data and environment. But given the fact that we want to have main sessions related to these four tracks, we need to identify how this gets together with the overview on these proposals accepted for the tracks on the one hand and then what would be a good complementary theme to be addressed in a main session in the respective track.
And then we also need an overview in all the four tracks in all the main sessions that come together there, right? See a bit -- maybe it's an overfocus initiated by the current situation of the pandemic. But we have lots of workshop proposals, and we have also suggestions for main sessions that are dealing with the pandemic and the outcomes. I do think we need to bring that together, not to be redundant in the main session issues. And so, therefore, I do think if we could -- of course, we will have our breakout sessions and we will continue discussion tomorrow.
But I do think we still need some time maybe till our next meeting takes place. Jennifer has already suggested that it's a bit more than the two hours that we usually do and then we can go into more details of that main session program to make it cohesive and consistent with the workshop session program, so to bring it together.
Thank you for listening.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Jutta. Good ideas with that.
>>TIMEA SUTO: Thank you. And I realize that much of what I wanted to say has already been said, so I will try to be very, very brief.
But I just wanted to quickly raise a couple of procedural questions. I don't know if that's to the chair or to the group or to the secretariat. But I'm a bit unclear on the process we will be following to select main sessions. What does a proposal constitute? Are we throwing out ideas in the next hour? Are we just consulting this? Are these proposals already taken on board as viable options for the MAG to consider? Because they all come through very different inputs. Some have been suggested a year ago. Some have been suggested as a title. Some have been suggested just now for us to lift up from workshops that I don't think we've done before. We don't -- also, we don't know if the workshop proponent would be okay with handing over their idea to the MAG to run with it.
So I'm just trying to understand what is the right way for us to approach these topics. What can we take on board? How much can we add to this? A couple of guidelines on that would be very helpful to echo what Jutta just said and Jennifer said before and others, that we need to think about this in relation to the rest of it.
And what is -- what is the main session? What is an intro session? What is a highlight? I think we need to think about those as well. Also in terms of numbers, but also in terms of just cohesion of the program. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Timea. I will try to clarify as much as I can.
>>NATASA GLAVOR: Hi, everyone. Natasa Glavor from Croatia, representing government stakeholder group, third year in MAG.
I just wanted to clarify on, I think, about the opening and closing plenary sessions of the conference.
Do we have any information about that part of the program? Or is it something that we should provide as suggestion, is it something that we should discuss in our breakout sessions today or tomorrow.
So that would be my question.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Natasha. Thanks for asking that. That's really important, actually.
And I don't see anyone else requesting the floor.
Is that -- I see the little -- no one else.
Okay. So we need to now prepare for the breakout session.
So, in fact, it's very helpful to have this input. And I'll try and, to the best of my ability, help with giving you some guidelines. And, of course, you, as your groups, you have flexibility. You can raise different issues.
So I think firstly, in terms of number. I think -- you obviously can't come up with -- it's difficult to address number when you don't know what the overall design is going to be like. But on the other hand, you all know the IGF and you know that -- or most of you have been at an IGF. And so what is your gut feel about what is a -- a limit?
We know from experience that too many main sessions don't work. But we also now have a slightly different format, so just to keep that in mind.
But, yes, if each group can just talk a little bit about what you would feel comfortable with in terms of a number of sessions.
And now next, I want to come to introductory and concluding sessions. Are they main sessions? Or are they going to be different? So just to think about how you want to handle them.
Sylvia has already made some suggestions. So I think that's the other thing, just to look at the introductory and concluding sessions and how you think we can approach them in the light of the fact that we have these four themes and that we have a virtual IGF.
Then other topics, considering, you know, other topics for main sessions. We have the topics that emerged from the open consultation, which is the roadmap topic and the COVID-19 topic and the ISOC proposal for looking at emerging approaches to policy-making. And you're going to have to go and look at their proposal, someone -- or maybe we can send you a summary.
But you don't have to be exhaustive. Just look at those other topics. You've got the topic that was proposed by the MAG, the one on committed actions for connecting and enabling the remaining billions. And think about that. Maybe that fits with inclusion. I don't know. You know, you need to decide how to deal with that.
And then you have the -- the data and sessions proposal. And maybe it would be helpful for everyone to just have a look at 229, at workshop 229. Or, Maria Paz, if you want to say why you think -- or Chenai, if you want to say why you think it would be good.
And then we have the proposal from today, which is to look at environment. And, now, again, would that be part of the track proposal?
So let me try and summarize. You want to look at number, overall, what you feel is realistic, what you feel comfortable with. You want to look at topics, drawing on the tracks and on other topics that have been put on the table in one way or another. You want to take into account that the high-level sessions will focus on the pandemic. And you want to take into account that the NRI main session is going to focus on emerging situations. So there are those to work with.
And then, finally, I think, you also want to look at the dynamic coalition proposal, which we don't have in detail yet. But keep that in mind. And then we want to -- at the end, I'd like you to come up with ideas -- oh, sorry. I'm adding Natasa's input. Talk about opening and closing sessions. How would you like to see this happening? It might be very nice to have a -- for a virtual IGF to have a opening plenary and a closing plenary. So think about that. We want to give people a sense of being part of a big event.
And then the last thing I'd like you to look at in your breakout groups is next steps, how should we go about this? You have experience from last year, all the old MAG members, where you worked in thematic groups to prepare the sessions. So if you could come up with proposals of what the next steps should be and what the working methods should be for us to take this process of organizing main sessions forward.
So let me try and summarize:
Numbers, topics, introductory and concluding sessions and how they relate to topical main sessions, opening and closing plenaries or main sessions, and next steps.
So those are sort of five areas that I'd like you to discuss in your groups.
Is there anything that I'm overlooking?
>>JUTTA CROLL: If I may, again, Anriette.
The DC's proposal was presented. And it's in the presentation that might also be in the repository, so that I would like to draw the attention from the four breakout groups also to that. It's not only the NRI's, but also the DC's proposal, just to mention.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: You know, Jutta, what we can do is, we'll add it to this slide, which just summarizes all of the proposals. And then we'll update it. We'll refresh this, and this document in the repository.
>>JUTTA CROLL: Wonderful. Thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: So, secretariat, if you can please get going with that.
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: Madam Chair?
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Yes.
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: Thank you. I just wanted to ask if the secretariat already has the link to the proposal that Karim and I prepared or if you prefer to share it in this chat.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: I think the proposal is already in the repository.
>>ROBERTO ZAMBRANA: Okay. If it's already, thank you.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: And my understanding -- and I checked with the secretariat on this -- is that the MAG has already approved this. So this is -- so here, the MAG will want to give input and help you shape this main session.
So I think -- but the fact that there will be a main session, my understanding was that that has been approved already. So if people want to revisit that decision, you'll have to be explicit in your breakout groups that you want to revisit that decision.
>>SUSAN CHALMERS: Chair?
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Go ahead, Susan.
>>SUSAN CHALMERS: Okay. Hello, everybody. Susan Chalmers from NTIA, U.S. Department of Commerce.
Just a few questions. And please forgive me if I missed this already.
But is -- So it's my understanding that the suggestions for possible main sessions, that there are -- there is information about these suggestions on the IGF website in the repository. Is that correct?
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Susan, it's being updated now. But there's a slide. The file name is -- I can't really see. But it's called IGF 2020, received suggestions for possible main sessions.
>>SUSAN CHALMERS: Okay.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Susan, since you're on the phone, we can send them to you via email to make it easier for you.
(Multiple people speaking simultaneously.)
>>SUSAN CHALMERS: Thank you, Chengetai.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: And, Susan, that just summarizes the suggestions that came through the open consultation, the suggestions that the MAG raised, and then the NRI dynamic coalition and the Data Workshop Evaluation Group have a proposal. And then the proposal --
(Multiple people speaking simultaneously.)
-- that came out of the discussion this morning.
>>SUSAN CHALMERS: Okay.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: So that's all there is at the moment.
But really be open-minded when you approach this. You don't have to -- you know, you can be creative about how you --
>>SUSAN CHALMERS: Okay.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: -- do it.
>>SUSAN CHALMERS: Thank you.
And I have a follow-up question. I don't want to put too much distance between the lovely list that you just enumerated about main sessions and openings and closings, but relatedly -- and, again, please forgive me if this has already been addressed today -- my questions are -- my question regards the high-level sessions.
Given that we don't have a host country and the host country plays a role in those types of main sessions, the high-level sessions, should we be factoring that -- that space into account at all when we're discussing main sessions? Or are we just discussing main sessions without -- without constraint at this point in terms of scheduling?
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: I think it is worth taking it into account. But we have very little information at this point. And, you know, you cannot take into account what you don't know yet in terms of scheduling.
What we do know -- and I want to invite Chengetai or Wai Min to -- if they are with us -- Wai Min, if you're with us -- just to say a little bit more. But the idea is it will be looking at Internet governance and issues in the context of emergency situations.
Wai Min, are you still with us? Do you -- do you mind just giving the MAG a very quick initial update on what the thinking is about the high-level sessions? Or if you're not with us, Wai Min, Chengetai, could you, please.
I'm not saying that you -- you should plan around this. But I think it's useful for you to hear what UN DESA's thinking is at the moment.
>>SUSAN CHALMERS: Thank you.
>>WAI MIN KWOK: Anriette, thanks. Thanks, Susan.
This is Wai Min Kwok, UN DESA.
I would just give a brief, and I would also like Chengetai to add on in case I miss anything.
I must first say that this is still very much in a thinking process about how we can go about doing it.
The (indiscernible) and the high-level session, since the U.N. is the host, we also like to bring the U.N. agencies, but not only U.N. agencies, but also other IGO that include both in the government and not in the government. So that's one.
And the other perspective is on COVID-19, which I know that there's been discussion on that already in looking at emergencies. But COVID-19 is -- it can fall under emergency. But we all know that it will be so called a new normal or we are already in the new normal. So there are actually different work and different perspectives by number of international organizations.
So that's one part, involving U.N. agencies and other IGO.
The other part that we like to bring in is also some of these regional priorities or regional central issues. For example, just -- I think you know better than me that connectivity is a high priority as compared to other regions, not that it's not important in other regions.
So, likewise, the (indiscernible) can be in some regions or in some subregions. So we would like to get the U.N. regional commissions and with other regional organizations, like African Union, in the breakout, for example.
Then the other -- another dimension to the high-level discussion is that we would also like to have -- see how we can give some enhanced visibility to the future host country. That include, of course, our colleagues in Poland, as well as in Ethiopia, because also -- we have had the discussion with them since earlier part of this year in planning for the IGF in Addis Ababa next year. Of course, this is happening in 2022. And our future host japan is also very much like to be on board. So we would like to see how they can also be involved or to be -- at least their priorities to also be -- to somehow be reflected. But, of course, it will not be just the host country. It is actually there have to be a global dimension to it. And we will see on how -- if it is appropriate to get also the past host country, the former host country as part of high-level session as well, especially in terms of attracting the high-level participants that include ministers and other prominent persons.
I will stop here. And I -- I ask Chengetai to add if I missed anything.
Thanks. Thanks, Anriette.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Okay.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Just adding to what Wai Min has said, I think he has done a very comprehensive job in complaining, we will -- it's not just governments and the U.N. that we are thinking about for the high-level sessions. It's going to be multistakeholder. So we will be asking for the input from the other stakeholder groups. So we will be inviting as well the civil society leaders and also business leaders. So just to make that clear.
The other thing, for the opening and closing sessions, yes, the MAG can make suggestions, and they're welcome to make suggestions. That's good. But as the U.N. is the host -- is playing the host, those are -- the opening and closing sessions are being facilitated by the U.N. as such. I hope that makes that clear.
I think that's all, unless somebody's got any questions.
Again, we will be developing this -- fleshing this idea out more, and we'll be sharing it with the MAG. And we do intend to actually showcase the global nature of the IGF, so with the possibility of actually also getting our national and regional initiatives involved and also the organization internationally as well with these high-level sessions, and coming up with, basically, a compendium of Internet governance-related issues on the COVID-19 crisis. Again, as I said, I won't say that much since we're still formulating the idea.
>>CHAIR ESTERHUYSEN: Thanks, Wai Min, and thanks, Chengetai.
So what I see is MAG members asking for input documents. I think Chengetai always advises us not to get hung up on documents.
But, secretariat, if you can, just make sure that the MAG, maybe if we can distribute in one message to MAG members the workshop 229. Well, that's a public document. The summary: Discussions of the open consultation, so that they have some text on the proposal from ISOC and the proposal on the digital cooperation roadmap, and this slide that we have here, and -- which we need to update so that it also reflects the dynamic coalition proposal.
And then -- and Karim and Roberto's proposal, which should be online.
But, secretariat, I'm sorry to add this to your workload, but just to make it easier for the MAG members to have access to the reference documents.
So are there any other questions? Are we ready to break?
I'm sure people are tired, because we've been working without a break. And I see Titti saying, yes, please.
Titti, is that for breaking or for something else?
I'm just checking with chat.
So on this note, I don't see any further requests for the floor, so I am drawing this plenary to a close and wishing everyone very well for your breakout groups.
I'll send an email to the MAG list, just as a reminder of what we would like to get out of these groups. But at the same time, don't feel pressured. If your discussion goes into a different direction, that's fine, as long as you report that back to us so that we can all benefit from that.
You will go into your breakout sessions in your preassigned groups and time slots. And you need to get the Zoom details, which have been made available in various places.
And that's the end of the second to last day of the 2020 second MAG and open consultations.
Just checking the agenda here. Tomorrow, we start at 12:30 UTC. And we, hopefully, will have a relatively short session tomorrow. And I'm sure you're all exhausted. But we were nearly at the end of this marathon of meetings.
So thanks again to all the groups and the facilitators and the rapporteurs, to the secretariat, to the captioners, and to -- who might have left, because we're running over time, and to everyone who's helped make this possible.
Good luck with your groups, and see you tomorrow.
>>CHENGETAI MASANGO: Thank you.