IGF 2023 WS #88 Youth engagement in policy-making: the case of the GDC

Organizer 1: Veronica Piccolo, Internet Society Youth Standing Group
Organizer 2: Izaan Khan, Internet Society Youth Standing Group
Organizer 3: Jenna Manhau Fung, 🔒DotAsia/ NetMission.Asia
Organizer 4: Athanase Bahizire, ITU Generation Connect
Organizer 5: Ishihara Takumi, Keio University
Organizer 6: João Moreno Falcão, 🔒Youth Standing Group

Speaker 1: Rodrigo Alexandre, Technical Community, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
Speaker 2: Jenna Manhau Fung, Technical Community, Asia-Pacific Group
Speaker 3: Izaan Khan, Civil Society, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 4: ABRAHAM SELBY, Technical Community, African Group
Speaker 5: Phyo Thiri Lwin, Civil Society, Asia-Pacific Group


Veronica Piccolo, Technical Community, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)

Online Moderator

João Moreno Falcão, Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)


Athanase Bahizire, Technical Community, African Group


Round Table - 90 Min

Policy Question(s)

Future generations will be the most affected by today’s decision-making when it comes to Internet governance and sustainable development. We aim to answer these policy questions.

Understanding the importance of youth engagement. How / to what extent young people are engaged in policy-making to concretely shape them and how can other stakeholders enhance their participation?

Overcoming obstacles. What are some of the challenges and opportunities involved in engaging the youth on Internet Governance issues and global digital cooperation?

Promoting Youth’s concrete action points. How can the key priority areas of the youth be appropriately addressed through the Global Digital Compact?

What will participants gain from attending this session? Participants will gain insight into how youth engagement within global and regional policy processes works, what the challenges and opportunities are for youth and other stakeholders to collaborate within the GDC processes as well as the broader Internet Governance ecosystem, as well as understanding what the youth’s position is on the key thematic areas of the GDC and the IGF.


In September 2021, the Secretary-General of the United Nations on Technology published the report “Our Common Agenda” that introduced the Global Digital Compact to establish a blueprint for international cooperation on digital transformation. Following the launch of the multistakeholder open consultation to collect inputs to shape the agenda, many youth organisations active in the Internet Governance space converged to produce detailed responses that captured the priorities of the youth, and demonstrated a level of engagement that rightfully solidifies them as a key part of these global processes. This session in particular will present case studies from the Internet Society Youth Standing Group, NetMission Asia, and other young organisations and representatives.
The speakers will discuss their policy documents, the challenges, and opportunities the GDC process creates from a youth perspective.
Youth engagement in Internet Governance policy-making proccesses and their concrete outputs have never been discussed in IGF events before and, in this regard, this session will be an absolute novelty.
As this year’s overarching topic is “The Internet We Want - Empowering All People”, this session is necessary to shape engagement and empowerment of the younger generations and the generation of future stakeholders. This is even more important when Global Digital Governance and Cooperation is a specific area of discussion.

Expected Outcomes

This session is expected to further feed into the Global Digital Compact processes, by identifying areas of opportunity and collaboration amongst youth organisations, governments and international organisations.
The objective is to deliver our points to decision-makers, whose representatives onsite will be invited to discuss with us on equal footing.
The organisations presenting this panel already developed policy documents containing the consultation responses for the GDC.The policy documents are available on the UN Tech Envoy website:
At the end of this panel we will invite all participants to review our work and discuss our proposals, while the output of this session will be shared with governments, international and non-governmental organisations.

Hybrid Format: The session aims to facilitate a roundtable where participants will be part of the session itself.

Tentative agenda:
10’: Introduction and background. The moderator explains how the session will take place and points out that attendees can ask questions by using the hand-raising option or in the chat (online), or by requesting the floor (onsite).
50’: Policy questions 1,2,3. The moderator introduces the policy issues and addresses the speakers with questions in a roundtable fashion.
25’: Open floor. The moderator invites all participants to take the floor either online or onsite.
5’: Key takeaways (rapporteur) and conclusions.

The session is going to ensure interactions through a Q&A and comment section in the online application where the session will be taking place (e.g. Zoom). Both online and onsite moderators will make sure that the questions and comments are not overlooked through effective communication, but play an important role throughout the session.