IGF 2021 WS #259 Digital Cooperation process - Analysis from Youth lenses

Tuesday, 7th December, 2021 (14:45 UTC) - Tuesday, 7th December, 2021 (15:45 UTC)
Conference Room 6

Organizer 1: Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Organizer 2: Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Organizer 3: Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Organizer 4: Civil Society, Eastern European Group
Organizer 5: Government, Asia-Pacific Group
Organizer 6: Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)

Speaker 1: Juliana Novaes, Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Speaker 2: Meri Baghdasaryan, Civil Society, Eastern European Group
Speaker 3: Eileen Cejas , Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Speaker 4: Mubashir Sargana, Government, Asia-Pacific Group

Additional Speakers

Ethan Mudavanhu will replace Juliana Novaes as speaker

Fred Kwadwo Aazore will be the online moderator of the session


Break-out Group Discussions - Round Tables - 60 Min

Policy Question(s)

Assessing Internet governance approaches and mechanisms and fostering inclusiveness: What are the main strengths and weaknesses of existing Internet governance approaches and mechanisms? What can be done, and by whom, to foster more inclusive Internet governance at the national, regional and international levels?

The session will explore the different aspects of digital cooperation in the numerous mechanisms, events and documents elaborated in order to analyse how youth has (or has not) been involved in the process. In this way, we would be able to suggest ideas for the future implementation of the global digital cooperation in the near future.


5. Gender Equality
16. Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
17. Partnerships for the Goals

Targets: This session is designed to analyse the development of digital cooperation, with a special examination of youth involvement during the ongoing process. Therefore, setting an inclusive digital cooperation environment will help to maintain trust in the UN, its institutions and mechanisms to achieve the SGS overall. In this sense, it also includes having a great emphasis on gender equality in the composition of the mechanisms Having a widely comprehensive digital cooperation and achieving the recommendations stated in the Roadmap of Digital Cooperation (and its supporting documents) will get us closer to achieve the 2030 goals towards open, secure, stable and inclusive internet governance on a global scale.


Digital Cooperation has been one of the most discussed topics in 2020 and this year won’t be the exception: several institutions, civil society and private sector representatives and more stakeholders have been providing feedback on how to implement global digital cooperation based on the 3 architecture models shared by the UN High-Level Panel on Digital Cooperation report “The Age of Digital Interdependence”. In 2020 we have seen an important mechanism that foster digital citizenship participation on IG on a wide scale: the “We, The Internet” project conducted by Missions Publiques took place in more than 70 countries… youth lead the implementation of global citizens dialogues in 10 countries, which was a great way to showcase the importance of multistakeholderism in the design of Internet policies.

Historically youth has been one of the sectors involved in shaping different IG mechanisms like NRIs, DCs, UN bodies, etc. In this session, we will analyse relevant points from the Roadmap on Digital Cooperation, go through different aspects of the architecture models under discussion by the community and find elements that can be useful for the present and future implementation of a global digital cooperation setting. Youth will provide their viewpoints to achieve an inclusive and open internet for everyone.

Firstly, at the introduction, our expert speakers from around the world will provide their perspective on the recent updates related to digital cooperation in the world and their countries/regions. This cross-examination will include different initiatives related to the role of multistakeholderism with a special emphasis on youth involvement since 2005 and beyond. This introduction will take 15 minutes, assigning 5 minutes approximately per guest speaker.

Secondly, facilitators will arrange several roundtables to discuss three guiding questions:

·  What are your thoughts on the model?

·  What do you think are the challenges of this model?

·  What is the role of youth in this model and how can our participation be improved?


The attendees will use the Miro board to discuss the guiding questions with the speakers. Online participants will use the function of the Zoom chat to share their comments. The discussion on selected points will be essential to understand what can be done from youth looking to the future.

After the roundtable discussions, participants will join the main room where the speakers will sum up the main ideas of each room for 2 minutes. Then speakers will share the screen of the Miro board and request comments from the participants. The comments will be useful to draw the initial draft of the paragraphs we will share during the Tacking Stock session at the IGF, in order to summarise the main outcomes of the session. This last part will take 10 minutes.

Expected Outcomes

Attendees will participate actively in enriching the content of the Miro board we will share for the session, specially tailored to foster the exchange of ideas.

After the session, participants will be also invited to continue writing on the Miro board until the previous day of the IGF Tacking Stock session via request at info [at] youthsig [dot] org. The summary will be shared during the Open Mic session and Tacking Stock Session of the IGF2021.

The final outcome from the Miro board will be shared as a a publication on our websites from the co-organizing organizations involved (www.youthsig.org, www.ycigwordpress.com and others), where we will gather ideas from speakers and participants on how to strengthen youth participation. It will be essential to develop activities to engage youth in 2022.

Also, we will share the outcome with the IGF Secretariat, the WG Strengthening and UN DESA as we have collaborated recently on a policy brief related to youth issues.

1) We have discussed some ideas:

In the case of onsite attendees, they will have access to the Miro board and we will handover print version of the questions to avoid sanitation risks. The roundtables discussions rooms will last 15 minutes with the support of the onsite moderator who will make sure that participants have equal time to speak up. Taking into account attendees may prefer writing instead of speaking and due to limitations of time, our facilitators will also write notes on the Miro board we will prepare for the session (link available for the day of the session). For the onsite roundtables (3), we will request onsite participants to join assigned tables “1”, “2”, “3”, “4,” “5” which will be marked with numbers on paper. Each “onsite” roundtable will have a limited number of participants that allow us to guarantee a minimum social distancing of 6 feet. Onsite participants will be asked to be connected on the Zoom application and therefore “raise hand” there (even if they are in the room) to make easier the task of moderation. Onsite participants will be allowed to stand up and speak up for 1 minute

2) As mentioned above, we will count the time per intervention.

Online Participation

Usage of IGF Official Tool. Additional Tools proposed: Miro board and collaborative document. The Miro board will allow us to use visual support for the content. Online participants will be able to write their comments on the Zoom chat.

Key Takeaways (* deadline 2 hours after session)

Bringing Capacity building for Youth is very important, is a necessary step to get the correct tools, for example being involved in ISOC Youth Ambassadors program for us was our precedent in order to engage in the ecosystem because it is essential to have this support from other stakeholders.

From the perspective of the models, participants agreed that each of the models has this idea of bottom-up processes from the national perspectives to the regional to the global. There is a need for an ordered bottom-up process so it could be a mixture of the models since each of them has relevant things to offer..

Call to Action (* deadline 2 hours after session)

Youth is at the forefront, the effect of shutdowns affects mostly the youth, so the youth need to decide how better we want the internet to be. From the education point of view, in Africa for example they are still struggling to even have broadband internet that allows them to come to forums, or at least that gives them awareness.

Youth is already involved in Digital Cooperation conversation, having Youth as a stakeholder better recognized will be the challenge.In this way the Youth Summit Working Group on Inclusive Internet Governance ecosystem and Digital Cooperation raised concerns on the lack of representation of youth, not even the UN Youth Envoy as part of the Leadership Panel and we should advocate having more youth representation in decision making bodies.

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


Characteristics of the panelists: 1 Infrastructure senior, 1 human right lawyer / IP, 1 criminal lawyer, head of Youth SIG, feminists perspective, digital sustainability, ISOC Ambassadorship, Digital cooperation expert, 1 cybersecurity advisor, 1 APIGF representative, 1 software developer from Internet Society Youth Ambassadors Program 2021.

Then panelists went through the 4 digital cooperation models.

Firstly, Eileen mentioned some personal and reflections from the IGF Plus model based on DIPLO’s and personal opinion. After reviewing the composition of this body, she analyzed some advantages and disadvantages. Some remarks from her intervention included amplifying the outcomes of the IGF and bringing more communities, the concerns on the Leadership Panel, and its potential collaboration role with the Policy Incubator and other bodies. In addition, there is not a mention of the role of youth in such a body, which can affect negatively their inclusion according to point 7 of the UN Common Agenda, not even the representation of the UN Youth Envoy. It was also highlighted the necessity of considering youth as a recognized stakeholder.

Secondly, Mumbashir examined the Digital Commons Model and expressed that the idea behind this multistakeholder model is ensuring the diversity, from the technical infrastructure, through standards and protocols, for sustainability and digitalization; and safeguard the internet from some negative consequences that we can come across while using internet connections because people are connected and can access the resources.

Thirdly, Meri presented the Co-governance Model and its main features, for instance, relying on a horizontal model for digital cooperation using the examples of policy-making bodies in IEEE, IETF, and ICANN. Moreover, it separates norms from the implementation and law enforcement, and it just follows a simple process that provides governments with some frameworks. One aspect to feature is that, when norms are available, these could be adopted, to offer possible change for connecting or implementation desired. If there is a conflict, they will establish and provide discussion. Formalizing digital norms for implementation and enforcement.

Finally, Ethan spoke about NRIs by opening with a question: “Should the power to shape the internet be in the hands of everyone?” After giving some facts and mentioning the Youth PolicyMakers papers, he remarked that youth is highly involved in the ecosystem like the Youth NRIs. In this regard, capacity-building tools are essential for digital inclusion.

Participants from the session made some intervention on the topic of education, with the importance of youth to identify the gaps and keeping the Internet secure and safe. In this scenario, capacity-building programs are a good way to engage youth. In addition, Ethan suggested that the conversation on education should take into consideration the different contexts around the world.

On the models, participants also mentioned the necessity to find a mixture of models while maintaining the bottom-up process and contributing to the discussion of NRIs and Youth NRIs.

Regarding the comment on the possibility of considering youth as a different stakeholder, both speakers Eileen and Meri explained that the youth community has been discussing this topic for a long time and the point is, we see this need for the youth stakeholder, is a different stakeholder group. Otherwise, youth will be slowed down by other stakeholder groups so youth can present their specific perspective on the Internet Governance issues.

As ending remarks, speaker Eileen mentioned the Project We, The Internet organized in cooperation with Missions Publiques and with the presence of several youth representatives organizing these citizens dialogues on Internet Governance issues including digital cooperation so this topic is not a closed debate to certain circles of experts. This discussion should be open to everyone, with equal participation of all.