I. TERMS OF REFERENCE OF THE PANEL

  1. The High-Level Panel on Digital Cooperation convened by ‎the UN Secretary-General will advance proposals to strengthen ‎cooperation in the digital space among Governments, the ‎private sector, civil society, international organisations, the ‎technical and academic communities and all other relevant ‎stakeholders. The Panel’s report and its recommendations will ‎provide a high-level independent contribution to the broader ‎public debate on digital cooperation frameworks and support ‎Member States in their consultations on these issues. ‎
     
  2. The Panel will consist of 20 eminent leaders from ‎Governments, private sector, academia, the technical ‎community, and civil society led by two co-chairs. Its ‎composition will be balanced in terms of gender, age, ‎geographic representation, and area of expertise. The Panel ‎members will serve in their personal capacity. ‎
     
  3. The Panel shall meet in person at least once. Additional ‎interactions shall be organised for the Panel as a whole by ‎electronic means or through ad hoc group consultations. The ‎Panel will engage and consult widely with governments, private ‎sector, academia, technical community, civil society, and inter-‎governmental organisations across the world. It shall be agile ‎and innovative in interacting with existing processes and ‎platforms as well as in harnessing inputs from diverse ‎stakeholders. ‎
     
  4. In its report to the Secretary-General, the Panel shall identify ‎good practices and opportunities, gaps and challenges in digital ‎cooperation. It shall also outline major trends in the ‎development and deployment of emerging digital technologies, ‎business models, and policies and the possibilities and ‎challenges they generate for digital cooperation.
  5. In particular, the report shall: ‎
    - Raise awareness among policy makers and the general public ‎about ‎ the transformative impact of digital technologies across society ‎and the ‎ economy; ‎
    - Suggest ways to bridge disciplines on digital cooperation by ‎identifying ‎ policy, research and information gaps as well as ways to ‎improve ‎ interdisciplinary thinking and cross-domain action on digital ‎ technologies; ‎
    - Present recommendations for effective, inclusive, accountable ‎systems ‎ of digital cooperation among all relevant actors in the digital ‎space. ‎
     
  6. ‎The recommendations in the report shall seek to maximise ‎the potential of digital technologies to contribute inter alia to the ‎achievement of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development ‎and to support progress across a range of themes, including ‎digital empowerment, inclusive finance, employment, ‎entrepreneurship, trade and cross border data flows. ‎
     
  7. They shall also contribute to raising individual and systemic ‎capacities to ‎​maximise the benefits of emerging digital technologies; to ‎facilitating the participation of all stakeholder groups, especially ‎youth and women, in the digital sphere and; to enhancing ‎implementation of existing digital policies as well as norms. ‎
     
  8. The Panel shall avoid duplication with existing forums for ‎digital cooperation. It shall fully respect current UN structures as ‎well as national, technical community and industry prerogatives ‎in the development and governance of digital technologies.
  9. The Panel will complete its deliberations and submit its final ‎report, including actionable recommendations, within a nine-‎month period. ‎
     
  10. The deliberations of the Panel will be supported by a small ‎secretariat and funded by donor resources. The Secretariat shall ‎seek to leverage existing platforms and partners, including UN ‎agencies, working in the related domains. ‎