IGF 2021 WS #26 Digital Skillsets: Is this it?

Thursday, 9th December, 2021 (10:15 UTC) - Thursday, 9th December, 2021 (11:45 UTC)
Conference Room 3

Organizer 1: Gabriel Karsan, INTERNET SOCIETY YOUTH@IGF
Organizer 2: Lily Edinam Botsyoe, Ghyrate Ghana
Organizer 3: Daniel Bill Opio, Cyber Law Initiative

Speaker 1: Ihita Gangavarapu, Civil Society, Asia-Pacific Group
Speaker 2: Yawri Carr , Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Speaker 3: Lisa Nyamadzawo, Civil Society, African Group
Speaker 4: Chibuzor Njoku, Technical Community, African Group


Gabriel Karsan, Civil Society, African Group

Online Moderator

Daniel Bill Opio, Civil Society, African Group


Lily Edinam Botsyoe, Technical Community, African Group


Birds of a Feather - Auditorium - 90 Min

Policy Question(s)

Defining universal and meaningful access: What are the key elements that constitute universal and meaningful Internet access? How can it be measured? How is the concept evolving in time and what does this evolution mean for policy?
Barriers to universal and meaningful access: What are the main challenges that people face in obtaining and making full use of Internet access? To what extent are these the result of social, economic and cultural factors, and to what extent do they result from aspects of the digital environment? How can we use the responses to these questions to better understand the intersection between digital policies and other policy areas? Can this understanding help us to develop and implement more realistic Internet-related policy goals?

Automations, Robotics and AI are directly competing with the labor force, as they're superior in efficient at the jobs they replace and interoperable in terms of updating software code to become multifunctional, hence profitable compared to the normal worker who takes along time to learn, adapt and deliver. Yet, Labor is expensive compared to robotics that may produce as labor force and not earn any taxable income to the economy, That can be used to educate, reeducate and provide training and paradigm shifts to new labor and growing labor entrenched in the socio-economic system. Digital skills are forever evolving with slower adoption to the majority of population needed to sustain. Livelihoods. With Emerging technologies, new industries are growing and labor being replaced, for developing countries more marginalization and a labor force not ever having the opportunity to be integrated in the production system, due to unfair distribution of technologies in terms of access, knowledge, training , collective intelligence even the simplest of connectivity affordable and with local content to boost curiosity and inclusion. The very few big corporations and developing countries still work as grass top serving the top first approach whilst there remains billions of people unconnected, unaware of connectivity, blocked from accessing digital innovations to make lives easier due to the unequal practices , Norms and principles involved in equally distributing digital Skillsets, that will make the populations marginalized able to see, access, amend and manipulate the internet and technological resource into grassroots solutions that can improve livelihoods, from sharing of capital, telemedicine, Movement of ideas , people and trade through smartphones mobile technologies and the internet. Digital skills have not yet lived up to the potential of fully integration to the sovereignty, cultural education systems of marginalized groups and developing countries. The error in this it harnesses exclusion and enforces biases as some of human beings are left out to participate in world matters , to matter by being seen as equal beings thriving on inclusion and diversity and a collectivism egalitarian world built on unity and equal unbiased access to opportunities for all. We see the existing polarity that exists between the digital Skillsets provided by Developed countries and the young generations innovations in the technology internet space compared to the same generations youth from developing countries still unconnected as the others innovate powerful democracy building and shaking platforms. Intelligence is equally distributed but digital Skillsets are not , this is the source of heightened misrepresentation, biased algorithms, enhanced underdevelopment due to lack of a labor force that is employable , Re-educable and able to innovate and localize solutions to meet communal standards. We have seen how digital literacy has aided in new frontier industrial revolution, accelerated in the computing age but in connecting and equipping the next challenging billion with meaningful progressive and equal connectivity there's lagging and a lot of loopholes, This cannot be it and shouldn't be it, we must think of more practical solutions for digital literacy programs that' are meaningful and supporting of local content and institutions that's connectivity goes hand in hand with the ingenuity of innovation brought by an adept generation with proper digital and technology literacy. In creating the available systems of digital efficacy we have let some of us slip through the cracks and consolidated with corporate greed, Economists may argue that education including proper digital literacy in the 21st century is a subsidy paid to business to have labor which operate on the businesses and have a growing simultaneous economy. Business has a role now to use it’s relationship with government , young people who present majority of modern workforce to empower them with digital Literacy and know how’s needed to sustain the fabric of equal national and economical developments . Digital economies represent the business of the people for the people and by the people a true democratic Plainfield if we are able to localize and make digital literacy programs mandatory and accessible as a right to be part and parcel of education. We are closer to creating equal , inclusive and diverse world with a healthy to thriving economy. More than 1.7billion new people are connected , With 1 billion smartphones yet majority of them lack access to digital opportunities because there is no standard, easily accessible and understandable local digital education program that can fully include them in the digital innovation and democratic space. Most are young people and we are the generation to fix the world and open up to new frontiers of equal human technological evolution and a unified inclusive civilization.


4. Quality Education
5. Gender Equality
8. Decent Work and Economic Growth
9. Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
10. Reduced Inequalities
17. Partnerships for the Goals

Targets: Access to quality knowledge is equivalent to accessing and understanding the opportunities available for people to make a living, mostly it has been access to men, developed nations, And those who don’t identify with the LGBTQ but intelligence doesn’t correlate with those factors rather just a mechanism of oppression, segregation, manipulation and enhanced colonialism to those who have the knowledge and abuse it to control and strip liberties of others, that’s why civil liberties are hard to enforce due to the nature of the people and normative philosophy in gaining and building for equity. Digital literacy have empowered and continue to bring so many women online giving them platforms , voices and opportunities like never before the woman is strong and in a country like mine she is President with the help of digital information and Skillsets that has aided in the transfer of knowledge, Gender equality is not there yet but through digital literacy we are speeding up inclusion and reducing inequalities, developing nations have accelerated development and democratic representation with digital economies and platforms that have demanded accountable government and rule of law, young generations have escaped poverty with access to education and online opportunities to make and earn a living, Innovations have come to light unfathomable in their ability all with quality and equal access to digital Skillsets that have enabled new revolutions a more progressive and free world compared to 20 years ago. The SDGs have offered a blueprint for sustainable and equal humanity and the internet has come as a public savior tool to enhance the achievement of SDGs in it’s nature of being open , decentralized and boundless partnering all goals.


Our is a collective dialogue approach on the different digital literacy mechanism that have existed before, available now and what’s to come in the future. A deep intersection of the digital knowledge topic in a multifaceted linking social , economic, political and cultural context study led by youth on the internet analyzing deeply and thought provokingly the challenges of the state of digital education systems, it’s inequities and inaccessibility to certain groups and why it hasn’t served to reach the median internet user and boost full inclusion for a more equal, innovative and fully inclusive digital generation working on a collective global prosperity. With capital always following labor and labor in the verge of rapid automation the solutions needs to be well crafted digital literacy programs that will equip the labor intensive youth into avid modern 21st century skills to innovate local solutions. We are diverse youth sharing our experiences and raising these alarming questions with the aim of seeking concrete solutions for our generation to be well off.

Expected Outcomes

We expect to form a continuing working group on making studies on proper ways of running digital economies with digital savvy labor force. Beginning with a report and public recommendation paper localized with viewpoints of youth from a global scale localizing digital literacy schemes in local agendas and ways to influence public social policy to invest in the much needed ecosystems to support digital literate communities with access to the resources. Our working group shall disseminated the most potent issues on how to localize digital literacy conducting research at different forms of formal and informal education and development of a segmented and inclusive syllabus and Online awareness course and campaign on the best normative and functional practices to achieve a strong knowledgeable labor force with avid skillsets needed for a sustainable generation. Our open channel working group shall clearly state proximate goals and steps to be taken on matters of governance of resources funneled into a systematic and mutual benefitting distributed digital literacy program and platform for all labor especially young people to integrate with. With consultative meeting with how business and government can collaborate to make this achievement gain traction.

We shall involve the submission of prerecorded monologues and success stories of the generation that has benefitted and is working on digital sphere, all in 3mins they will present the potency of the topic in improving livelihoods, our speakers will list polls on and pre posted questions for our online attendees to engage and interact with before the session to keep the discussion open. Our moderator shall strictly probe onsite speakers to share their in-depth studies and experiences and each ending accompanied by a solution and question to further the cause. Online tools of encouragement as speakers , and artistic mid performance from activists and youth poets in the digital space as a way to engage more and creation of synergies among the channels available. We shall incentive open participation and most potent engagers shall have exclusive benefits in being members of our core working groups needed to further progress our cause of attaining digital literacy excellence for all of the people with thriving local content and local innovations at the digital spaces.

Online Participation

Usage of IGF Official Tool.

Key Takeaways (* deadline 2 hours after session)

Localization of internet in terms of languages and infrastructure ownership to boost local content, This comes hand in hand with digital Literacy as they are intertwined together.

Equality of spaces and meaningful connectivity goes hand in hand with a woke generation that can self regulate not only as consumers but as creators, innovators

Call to Action (* deadline 2 hours after session)

Local content task force in providing context and blueprints of achieving local data ownership and ability of use for every technology available

Protection of the cyberspace, meaningful use goes with purposeful protection from aspects of infrastructure, identity and the content

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


When you bring and fully incorporate a member of a populace by overcoming a challenge, we open the matrix of solutions that that particular populace brings. This is how we build inclusion brick by brick with stronger formations.

The IGF 2021 under the banner internet united brought a record number of young people, with seats at the table forming a critical juncture of the multistakeholder approach building and making decisions for a more safer and sustainable internet. 

Covid-19 boost brought further inclusion and strengthened cooperation about 800+ million people came online as extracted from the report by the ITU, The African CDC being a big case study on the power of digitization with an attached cause,

Rather it shouldn’t need a crisis for humans to understand and get access to solutions brought by the internet and technology.

Solutions by private sector, in particular president of the MTN group there was emphasis on the importance of internet penetration by accelerating broadband it accesses and cheap availability, achieving 3G at 90% across most of the developing countries.


Digital Transformation 

Investing in digital growth and enabling capacities transcendent and transcontinental synergies in digital synergies, technology is a major defining factor of economic progress and increased GDP that’s an undeniable fact.


Parts of digital transformation

Parameter’s need be set to manage digital technologies



Protecting data and local content, infrastructure security by design at a hardware level, user and technical relationship in security policies to understand how to be protected and how to protect oneself.

Coverage and connectivity, there should be ubiquity in the connectivity and translation of meaningful connectivity with localization, local use and local ownership to achieve seamless acceptance and growth of the connectivity, the resources and opportunities it brings.

As digital penetration increases, so do the attack landscape and number of potential targets for cyber threats. The Covid-19 pandemic led to accelerated digital adoption even by communities where basic security knowledge is foreign. In order to limit the impact of this problem, there must be intentional effort to create secure applications and infrastructure, industry enabling laws and policies, and enlighten the Internet users on the threats that exist and how they can stay safe.

Recommendations for Cybersecurity:

The use of educative posters, jingles, and phrases, at academic institutions will serve as regular reminders of security tips that become memorable.

At digitally dependent schools,, email blasts can be sent out occasionally to enlighten students on common schemes employed by cyber criminals and how to stay safe.

Basic Cybersecurity education should become part of the general academic curriculum. This is simply because we are technology dependent at home, school, and work. This means that we are all potential targets of cyber threats, making Cybersecurity knowledge a vital survival skill in today's world.

Relevant laws and regulations must be created to enable the growth of the Cybersecurity sector. Cases where cyber related laws have been abused to target political opposition and journalists must be resolved immediately, and those laws reviewed.

Because people are the most dynamic and unpredictable part of the Security puzzle, it is important to educate the user. Government can empower organisations and non-profit bodies who are committed to creating Cybersecurity awareness, so they can reach more people, thereby leading to a more cyber resilient society. 



 The literate today are far beyond basic arithmetic reading and writing; they are a class of new learners, a multiskilled and fast adapting breed that can keep up with the times. When each day poses as a threat of (find a word for expiring/ unworthy) the internet ecosystem presents a moral dilemma on how we fully equip the majority with the modern technological skills which are already part and parcel of daily activities and communities and how the social dynamics can favor these skills as a must have predicament for the future of society and sustainability.

In an era of AI algorithms defining how societies are, how business is run the politics and economics of society are conducted, When quantum computing supremacy is not far fetched and virtual worlds and augmented reality causes philosophical redefinitions on how we understand reality, ourselves as species and civilization in general its time to really question what are digital skill sets, how we can achieve them across the world and how they are meaningful and ought to be accessible for all generations and people, especially under this year’s IGFS theme Internet United .

There is always an interesting dynamic between business, labor, government and labor. Business needs employable labor that can sustain its modern and changing needs, Government needs to create employable labor that sustains the economy and is protected and well taken care of and labor is the activity that defines humans as worthy creates forging and creating a world that’s moving towards gradual progress and evolution. In the 21st century new labor means technical and digital savviness; new business means technology innovation within competent technocracies which are the future of government structures as seen throughout the pandemic.



Recommendations for literacy: 

Localization of the internet in terms of languages and infrastructure ownership to boost local content, This comes hand in hand with digital Literacy as they are intertwined together.

Equality of spaces and meaningful connectivity goes hand in hand with a woke generation that can self regulate not only as consumers but as creators, innovators

Protection of the cyberspace, meaningful use goes with purposeful protection from aspects of infrastructure, identity and the content 




What is leadership really? It’s been reformed and critiqued in so many shapes and forms but its basic nature lies within simplistic paraments, a community + A communities needs and interests = Brought by Proper Leadership. In our internet community it means realizing pillars, values and our mantra of an “Internet united and Internet United” is realized through the multistakeholder approach which in its supreme form equates to Inclusion. We need to build the political economy with digital competences and digital philosophies that they become able to question and find rights solutions against threats like digital colonialisms, Distortion of digital sovereignties, abuse of digital rights, Cyber Warfare and importantly equal access to skill sets and usage of the internet and technologies equally distributed to all human beings.

A society with digital competencies, knowledge and wisdom is self-sustaining economically, socially, politically and culturally. As its users are independent thinking self-regulating organisms that creates a complimenting social structure in distributing the technology resources and its dividends across all members of the particular society and generations to come. As it will leverage the internet and technology as a tool to simplify life in providing solutions to life problems in our daily activities from health through e-health and VR, AI Doctors to more happiness through truth of online content, social connections and immersive technology that will penetrate to deeper levels of our psychosis. Henceforth online mindsets adopted funneled through proper training of 21st century skill sets driven by technology can form true meaningful technocratically needed Leadership.


Achieving Digital Transformation and its challenges

Removing the Existing gap among digitization, uneven extent of the polarity of the digital resources Seen through financing, Skill Sets, Ownership and localization of Technologies.

Promotion and the cultivation of Local content through multilingualism, Multiculturalism, Multilateral digital diplomacy and the existence of clear parameters of digital sovereignty.

Focusing on people centered progress in digital solution and not metrics of number of users of a platform without clarity of the impact brought the digital solutions and innovations.

As technology today determines economic progress and growth, People's freedoms and how we run democracies we need a global inclusive human-centered global framework for regulations of digital resources and their sustained innovation that is driven growth.

People centered progress combined with global blueprints and frameworks for guidance and regulation especially for developing sustainable relationships between business and government are vital for equitable internet technologies.


Democracy and Internet Advocates:

Systems and processes built on merits of transparency are important in holding the base of accountable digital democracies, When the conversation about democratically leading digital resources equality and inclusion lead these dialogues, and most advocate to have the digital tools by governments and other stakeholders to be normatively distributed and fairly allocated that they don’t further the digital divide.

We have witnessed the Covid digitization boost, where open data, open systems and shared infrastructure brought more people online and built more resilient people, organizations and communities the other side of coin has brough vaccine inequities and blatant dangerous disregard of human rights through targeted manipulation, Online harassment & xenophobia, Racism, Misogyny, Crony digital capitalism, Censorship, Mis and Disinformation to mention a few.

Humanistic approaches intertwined with democratic values are potent in the creation of digital spaces. Humane contact needs to be refined under universal morally rich innovations that can be reflected in transparent diverse algorithms to solve our problems.

To the users, the netizens, technical creators and innovators building stronger characters and personal institutions that can breach the polarity consisting of a thin line between the online and offline world is of vital significance. Digital Rights are human rights, Online harassment is still harassment, what we do online is simply an extension of our real lives and we ought to be more accountable and responsible. Our universal values should also constitute connectivity in its fullest.


African United Internet

Pan-Africanism is aging, Kwame Nkrumah’s ambition is a great grandchild’s dream now but if I may ask for how long? The internet and Africa have presented unprecedented achievements for a people, the profits of full inclusion, true democracy from pivoting and leapfrogging on how we understand and localize technologies to improve our local life standards a simple example is mobile money, how it has penetrated structures of a social construct and empowered communities to thrive economically and socially that our identity ties with this domestic innovation defining our unity as a civilization towards further technological progress.

Intracontinental African alliances need to be strengthened in the internet governance space through building capacities correlating with contextual parameters that are user centric and emphatical towards normal African citizenry. The majority of internet users and consumers need to be suppliers, owners and creators of digital resources.

The African CDC has stood for the values of a connected Africa through digitization, All nations have contributed to the points of a trajectory towards open data, open governments in regard to the mitigation of the risks and challenges brought by the pandemics, our capacities in the collective bargain of Vaccine procurements and supply chains on the digital space are testimonials of our adoption for ownership, sharing, management and unified consciousness of the digital spaces and tools needed for progress. We have become more resilient yet it shouldn’t take a pandemic for us to be pioneers of internet and technological development.  



 To protect, Be protected and account for the protection is the baseline that supports law. A right something that one justifiably and innately is entitled to have. Digital Rights are built from ownership, understanding and moral justification of equity among netizens in an era driven by a pandemic we have seen how digital rights have translation, forming proclamations of the internet as a connection of life. Drastic impacts have risen from internet shutdowns, censorship, Targeted surveillance, Mis and disinformation to manipulation of elections. So how do we protect digital rights?! How do we protect ourselves? 

Encryption is a part of the solutions, cryptography of data, content that stand on merit of privacy and autonomous independence interaction with digital resources.

Encryption needs to be ubiquitous as a mean of protection, at a user level one can use BYOE STRATEGY, Bring your own encryption. At an institutional level added a layer of verification, validation and cryptography protection and open transparent coordination at a government level in managing and properly distributing safer protected cyberspaces.

Users need the savviness and access to meaningful use of cyberspaces and digital tools. Through engagement and empowered use they can shape and consolidate a safe and more sustainable internet united. 

Just like any thriving civic space contains civil liberties fiercely protected by law, the cyberspace should be intensely protected by encryption that respects Personal & Gvt sovereignty promoting civil liberties and civil discourse . That end to end pillar of the internet. 



Conclusion and the Data Paradox:

In the era of big data and 5G telecommunications fused with AI, the question rises on what data is? Content has a legal backing but data is not a legally recognized thing. Hence Corporations, Governments can use millions of salient points through an algorithm to provide a service or abuse people. With deepening psychological methodologies of targeting its difficult for a normal user knowing they are targeted whilst the AI tools know deep insights about a person and a persona deeper than their cerebral understanding. 


Think of a tree, to farmers with land it's easy to sell a tree cheaply, an intermediary exports and a middle ground converts it into furniture that is sold as a finished product to the tree farmer at a higher price. Though this is known for data it's different as we unknowingly give data to corporations without proper regulations or protection, data is then sold back to its original source inform of a service. Capacities to understand with data conscious decision makers with data driven results are important in solving this paradox.