Supporting SIGs

Syllabus ‎for Schools on Internet Governance ‎(SIGs)

- Digital Inclusion for All -

Digital policy and related processes are continuously changing as digital technologies are emerging and becoming more integrated in people's lives. Much of the knowledge and skills on how to maximise benefits from using digital technologies, but also how to utilize them in a safe and secure manner, is with users. In order to ensure the overall safety and security online, it is important to ensure that education on how to use digital technologies circulates among people. Schools on Internet Governance (SIGs) have shown to be a good way to systematically do this.

Over the years, those who already held expertise in Internet governance recognized the need to develop the capacity on Internet governance further. They started to invest in educational programmes that could attract people of different backgrounds and ages, and help transfer knowledge on what digital technologies can do for people and how they can be utilized. Over time, some of these activities gained a regional or global scope that triggered networking among stakeholders across various communities, countries and regions.

The IGF Secretariat has been communicating with many SIGs. In several, its team members were involved in various ways to support the implementation of SIGs programmes. In particular, the last few years saw a growing number of SIGs associated with the national or regional IGF initiatives as a form of capacity development. During the collaboration with SIGs, it was noticed that different practices exist in planning and implementing the schools. Some are a few hours long, while others run for days. Some include an international component, while others are completely locally-driven. One of the biggest assets associated with schools is that they are inclusive of ages, regions, and disciplines. In times of a still-growing digital divide, including the gender-based divide, this is particularly important.

In 2021/22, the IGF Secretariat has aimed to extend its support to SIGs through cooperation on the development of an international syllabus framework that can be adjusted to the particular requirements and needs of any local community. In this activity, the Secretariat collaborated with the facilitators of the Dynamic Coalition on Schools on Internet governance (DC-SIG) and conduced consultations with a broader community. The first version of the syllabus is developed through a bottom-up, open, transparent and inclusive methodology by gathering already existing good practices and brainstorming with the community on best ways to achieve this objective.

SIG Syllabus

The syllabus is an advisory document that may guide those who wish to convene a school or teach ‎Internet governance, or know more about the structure of IG courses. It contains the following sections:

  • Core Internet governance modules and elective modules, learning outcomes as well as a sample of faculty members and topics they teach;
  • Teaching methods such as practicums, hands-on industry presentations, moot courts and ‎‎others;‎
  • How to find lecturers and experts?
  • How to build coalitions, contribute to the DC-SIG?‎

The syllabus can be used by everyone, including: 

  • Teachers, professors, and educators around the world
  • Students in need of a study aid
  • Communities that want to convene a SIG
  • Communities that want to train the workforce
  • Communities that want to initiate and strengthen thematic, regional or national Internet Governance Forum initiative (or any combination thereof)

To learn more about how the work was developed, please visit this page.

In support of