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IGF 2018 - Day 1 - Salle X - How Do We Strengthen Digital Cooperation? (UNSG's High-level Panel on Digital Cooperation)

The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during the Thirteenth Annual Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) in Paris, France, from 12 to 14 November 2018. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid to understanding the proceedings at the event, but should not be treated as an authoritative record. 

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>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Hello.  Good afternoon, excellencies, ladies and gentlemen, guests, and colleagues.  I'm Jovan Kurbalija.  It's an honor to welcome you to the open panel or open forum on the high‑level digital, high‑level panel on digital cooperation.  I'm the Secretariat of the panel and executive director. 

I'm honored today to be accompanied with Minister Nikolai Astrup and Cathy Mulligan, members of the panel.  We have Nanjira Sambuli connecting from Kenya. 

The main purpose of today's open forum is to brief you about the panel activities, to answer most of your questions.  I'm sure there will be new questions that will be rise during the discussion to increase the understanding what the panel is aimed to achieve and to hear your inputs how we can proceed with our activities. 

Now I will start by recapitulating the main information about the panel, and then I will pass the floor to our panelists to brief us about various aspects about panel discussions.  The panel was established by 4th of July by U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres.  It is chaired by Jack Ma and Melinda Gates.  It has 22 members.  Some of them you know like Windsurf and some of them you don't know.  This is the new reality we're facing in digital space. 

We have new members from the communities dealing with blockchain like Cathy.  We have new members from AI community, from data and other spaces where digital issues are addressed these days.  This is one of the underlying message that in addition to the main space which is Internet Governance Forum, we have more discussions in other policy spaces. 

If I can just rephrase the famous saying by John Lennin, digital cooperation is what is happening while we're discussing digital cooperation.  And digital cooperation is happening in many places, in international organizations, in technical associations.

And one of the main aims of the panel is to try to connect various dots to overcome policy silos, to increase the understanding about digital policy.  Secretary‑General asked us to act in a humble way, to listen, to engage with communities world‑wide, and to avoid the creation of the new bodies or mechanism when it comes to digital cooperation. 

We have to see how to make existing bodies and mechanisms more efficient.  The first meeting of the panel was held in New York at the headquarters.  The next meeting will be in January in Geneva.  And the report with the recommendation is likely to be issued in mid‑May 2019. 

One of the unique feature of the panel, and I will close my introduction with that, is we're trying to engage so‑called implementation champions, people who can contribute to our deliberations, who can propose various recommendations, and later on recommend implementation on those recommendations.  This is open for all communities world‑wide.  This is also open for our panel members.  And it is probably the best introduction for the minister of development of Norway, Nikolai Astrup, who has been taking a knew issues which he would like to see to be implemented by Norway and other development agencies.  Nikolai, please. 

>> NIKOLAI ASTRUP:  Thank you, Jovan, for the introduction.  I'm really honored to be part of this panel.  As minister of international development, my starting point is how can we reach sustainable development goals by 2030. 

And I believe that digital cooperation is going to be key in order to achieve the SDGs and also in accelerating development toward SDGs and helping us ensure we can reach them by 2030 and also make it more possible of fulfilling our promise of leaving no one behind. 

So closing the digital gap is going to be very important.  Within the panel, I'm co‑chairing a working group on inclusive development with my colleague Bogolo Kenewendo from Botswana.  I'll use my intro today to narrow in on a topic where I see strong potential for more collaboration and multistakeholder engagement.  When I look at the international landscape, some of the initiatives that stand out in terms of scale and impact are built around digital public goods. 

By digital public goods I mean digital technologies which can easily be scaled and adapted across countries due to licensing, design, and relevance. 

Norway's involved in funding and implementing several digital public goods together with international partners.  The most prominent is probably the health information assistant program with its accompanying DIHS2 software.  This software is being used in more than 100 countries with a global footprint of 2.3 billion people. 

The core element behind the success of the health information system program is a governed open source approach where there are relative simple generic core software in combination with local adaptation, capacity building and community building.  More than 4,500 people from all over the world have been training using DIHS2 and as many as 50 PhD students have graduated within the health information system program. 

Norway's also funding highly scaleable and relevant interventions within early grade resources and soon weather data.  What we're directly involved in is just the tip of the iceberg. 

During my international travels, I frequently come across new examples of digital public goods.  UNICEF Innovation is working on a platform called Project Connect to improve Internet connectivity for schools globally.  Dual Banks development program is working to scale digital identity systems using the open source identification platform MOCIP.  There are, of course, open source initiatives built and driven by nonstakeholders such as the Wikimedia Foundation and Mozilla Foundation as well as technologies released licensed by tech companies such as Google and Facebook. 

We are, for instance, benefitting from Google's material design and our open source early grade reading resources.  These are a just a few examples of digital public goods.  Personally I have no idea how many others exist and how to link them to today's greatest development challenges.  I imagine this is also the case for many organizations and individuals in low and middle income countries that could benefit the most from these digital resources. 

I therefore initiated this multistakeholder process to ensure that digital public goods can be more easily created, discovered, and used.  In particular, by institutions and individuals in low and middle income countries. 

The aim is initially to develop a prototype for platform to discover and engage with digital public goods.  I have asked UNICEF Ventures to lead on the prototype given their relevant experience.  The longer term aim is not only to identify the digital public goods that exist but to attract more investment in the community and capacity building space. 

One important reason why more than 3 billion people are still not online is a lack of perceived relevance and a lack of trust in the Internet.  I hope interaction with user friendly digital public goods where content development are in languages that users know and where licenses allow for adaptation and where commercial reuse can help build trust through agency. 

In defining digital public goods and establishing principles for collaboration built around them we're leaning heavily by the work led by the high‑level panel.  I would like to ask you to join us in the process moving forward.  Please let the panel and me know if you're interested in taking part in the digital public goods work as it progresses, and we will connect you with the UNICEF Ventures team.  Thank you, Jovan. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you, Minister Astrup, Nikolai, for highlighting the various aspects of the approach to the digital public goods and in particular highlighting the importance of collecting the success stories that exist world‑wide in this field and making a link to the interplay that this discussion will have around this panel's work building around values and principles and mechanisms for digital public goods. 

Our next speaker is Cathy Mulligan who is coming, Cathy, am I correct, from blockchain community or distributed ledger community? 

>> CATHY MULLIGAN:  Digital disruption.

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Digital disruption, that's a better definition.  Cathy, please.

>> CATHY MULLIGAN:  Hi, everyone.  It's a great privilege to be here and serve on the panel.  I'm leading the group that's looking at data.  As everyone here is aware, the data is becoming an incredible important part of our economy and is also raising serious issues in the way it gets used. 

Some of the questions that we're investigating and we encourage anyone here who would like to join with us to contact the panel or myself is what sort of social, legal, economic issues pertaining to data require improved coordination?  And what does successful coordination look like?  And what are those key elements of successful coordination and how do we work together to deliver on some of these initiatives? 

Secondly, we're also looking at how can privacy, security, and other public interests be ensured while data supporting the development of data driven technologies.  So effectively, how do we ensure the privacy and security of these solutions while ensuring that we continue to enjoy digital technologies and the economic growth that those bring. 

Some of the subquestions we'll be looking at are what are the best practices in breaking down silos.  I think many people who have been involved in government previously have noticed that sharing data across silos is an extremely difficult piece of work.  And what are the best practices for helping breaking down silos both internally and externally to organizations? 

But also how we can balance the protection of citizens with the need to provide security, for example, or privacy in a continuously emerging digital world.  So what are the methods, frameworks and reference points that we have that we can use. 

One particular piece I think is also to properly address the reduction in the hype cycle around technology.  When is it appropriate to use it?  And when is it actually just really boys with toys if I may say so.  Yeah.  Thank you. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you, Cathy.  Now we'll hear from Nanjira, panel member.  She's based in Kenya and she will connect remotely.  I hope technology's in place.  Can we hear from Nanjira? 

>>  NANJIRA SAMBULI:  Hi, I hope you can hear me. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Yes, perfectly.  Please go ahead. 

>> NANJIRA SAMBULI:  Wonderful.  Good afternoon to all.  I'm looking primarily on the topic of human rights and human agency in the digital age.  But not as necessarily a stand‑alone but something that is embedded in all the discussions we're having on the panel and on the topic of digital cooperation. 

As has been noted, really it is an opportunity with this panel to bring a fresh perspective to this, if you will, age‑old problem of how human rights and human agency are actually respected. 

We are looking specifically at how digital technologies and their developers align their work with the topics of human rights and human agency and the balancing of private rights versus public goods and assessing the impact of technologies on human well being. 

I'm very keen on making sure that this topic is not considered an after thought nor just a punctuation of statements by actors in the digital domain. 

How human rights and human agency is factored in is something that we're considering in how to emphasize it right from the design to the implementation and roll‑out of digital technologies. 

The importance of accountability by all actors involved in designing technologies is paramount and as was noted in a note by the civil society actors of a high‑level panel indeed cooperation cannot be code for avoiding accountability and the inevitable conflict of interest between stakeholders necessary to uphold human rights in the digital age. 

The challenge and opportunity here, not only of enforcing human rights law in digital context, is that this is primarily a political issue and how we stimulate and turbo charge the political will to actually implement and enforce human rights law across the digital domain and the perspective on how this has been done will be greatly appreciated.  Thank you very much. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you, Nanjira.  We have now before I open the floor for your questions and comments, I would like to invite Cherif Diallo of Senegal to tell us a few words about interplay between IGF and panel.  The IGF is very kind to host today's open forum.  And there will be quite a few interesting activities where we'll be involving the IGF members into providing inputs for the panel.  Cherif, please.

>>  CHERIF DIALLO:  Thank you very much, Jovan.  The IGF Secretariat and the Secretariat of the high‑level panel on digital cooperation I think we've had a longstanding since the beginning of cooperation since both our offices are based in Geneva or at least half the office is based in Geneva. 

So we have been helping each other Secretariat to Secretariat.  Also we've been using our existing IGF networks to publicize and help the high‑level panel connect to stakeholders.  This includes the national, regional and youth initiatives for the country level contact and the regional level contact and also the regional IGF face‑to‑face meetings like the age specific meeting that we've had contact.  And I think, Jovan, you also spoke to the African IGF, correct, the meeting that was held at the African IGF. 

And at this IGF 2018 meeting for all the session holders we do have a section from the reports because all session holders are supposed to report back to the IGF Secretariat.  So in this IGF meeting we have asked a number of questions for each of the issue areas covered during their session whether it be e‑commerce, cybersecurity, AI, to provide input on issues concerning digital cooperation, for example, what are the values that digital cooperation should aspire to?  What are the principles that digital cooperation should follow? 

And we'll continue to collaborate.  And I think also this initiative is also very useful to see how we can improve the IGF.  And we're looking forward to the outcome of the report. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you.  We're honored and pleased today to have with us Mr. Stefan Schweinfest, director of the United Nations statistical division who has been very, very supportive of our activities.  Thank you, Stephen, for joining us. 

I think now we will open the floor for your questions and comments.  This is the best way that we develop further understanding of the panel's activities and also to hear about your expectations and your inputs about the panel.  The floor is open for both participants here in the room and the remote participants.  Let's see who is going to be the first.  Could you introduce yourself, please? 

>> AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Thank you, chairman.  My name is Adil Sulieman.  I'm with the African Union Commission.  I think the African Union Commission will welcome this initiative.  And we just wanted to make sure that given the time, the timeline and this is going to pose some difficulties in terms of achieving some more conclusive, inclusive document. 

So in that context, I would like to hear from you what is being done in terms of consultation with Africa?  And we are ready at the African Union Commission to host any sort of workshop to get some engagement from African member states.  Thank you. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you.  Let us collect a few questions, and then we will answer them in batches of three.  Another question or comment? 

While you're preparing your comments, let me answer this question.  It was great to address your meeting, African IGF, last week which was held in ^^car tomb.  Thank you for your invitation. 

That was just one signal about the importance of the consultations that we need on the African continent and the involvement of African stakeholders. 

In addition to general activities, engagement activities, which are the online consultations and discussion groups, we plan to hold the event in Benin on the 15th of January with different stakeholders from African continent. 

There are also some discussions about few other events in Africa.  And what you just said is that is fully understood of the panel, that there is a need for special efforts to involve African stakeholders in discussions on digital cooperation and digital policy in general. 

Stakeholders from definitely governments, civil society, business community, local communities.  We are looking forward and we'll be having a meeting with the African Union Commission and other stakeholders during this IGF in order to plan additional activities, in addition to this meeting in Benin on 15th of January and online consultation that we'll have with stakeholders from Africa. 

>> NIKOLAI ASTRUP:  Just a quick comment from me on this.  I think it's very important that we have broad consultations which is what the panel Secretariat has also done a good job at facilitating that kind of consultation, which we are also engaging in today. 

Not least from my perspective, I believe that the evolving developing countries and especially countries in Africa is crucial if these countries are to benefit from the huge potential that lies in better digital cooperation as we go along. 

So any input that the Commission might have would be great on how we can make sure that we have a broad consultation process to give us the best possible result. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you Nikolai.  Nanjira, do you have any comment on possible involvement of the African civil society in this process? 

>>  NANJIRA SAMBULI:  Yes, absolutely.  As has been mentioned, these consultations and these callouts for input need to be amplified by all possible networks while also factoring a majority of civil society and citizens may not even be online.  So we're trying very hard to make sure that their perspectives are also brought on board.  So therefore, just reemphasizing that we're willing to listen and be pointed in the right direction to interact with people on this topic. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you, Nanjira.  Ambassador Thomas ^^Schneider from Switzerland, please.  Thomas.

>>  Thank you and hello everybody.  First of all, thank you for coming here.  I think it is very important that this panel that is far away from some people in their perception is coming to the IGF is engaging in a discussion with the community here at present at the IGF to convey the views and expectations about what the panel is supposed to achieve and also get the feedback of the people here present in order to hear or feel what the expectations are on the work of the panel. 

With regard to our government, we support the panel.  We have always supported it since the beginning because we think that it is important that we progress to what you may call the next level of cooperation on digital issues.  There's already a lot of cooperation going on between different stakeholders.  It's not always visible.  And many things that are done that could be replicated or at least others could learn from things that are ongoing, but people just don't know.  There are so many meetings and so many different tracks and issues that are worked on by so many institutions that it's difficult to keep track of this. 

With regard to our expectation or our hopes about what the panel could achieve, for us it is less the actual discussions on the substantive issues where cooperation is taking place.  What we hope, because this is being ‑‑ the issues are being discussed in hundreds and probably even thousands of people that are working on several areas in various forms of cooperation.  What we hope to achieve is to help us all to have a more, let's say, structured, more visible, more inclusive system of cooperation that the panel may foster and help to develop. 

So in our view it's, given the limited time and limited resources that this panel has, which is supposed to come up with a report containing some recommendations next year around April, if I get this right.  What we would like to see the panel focus on is focusing on principles and objectives but mainly on modalities of cooperation based on the experience of hundreds and thousands of cooperation activities in various fields that are there, that the panel would try to instill some of the success factors or factors of failure as negative experiences that may also help, but in the end will try to focus on how to better shape modalities of cooperation that in the end the cooperation that is ongoing can be improved, enhanced, made more efficient so that everybody profits from the resources that are there in various institutions and that no one is left behind. 

So in our view it is really key to develop some mechanisms, methodologies, factors that could serve as a guideline or a blueprint or whatever you call it for next level of cooperation on digital issues.  Because we'll have to step up because the opportunities and challenges will be bigger and bigger every year with AI and all the best works that keep us busy. 

With regard to our principles and modalities, what we've experienced, for instance, consensus orientation, that you try to take everybody onboard, everybody support particular cooperation activity.  Inclusiveness that all those that are affected that could cease an opportunity or affect by side effects or don't know they're affected by side effects of a particular action will be brought to the table.  So to have a system of cooperation that gets everybody onboard, gets everybody at the table in an inclusive way, tries to take action on a consensus‑oriented basis, action that would allow for some diversity because not one size fits all, as we all know.  But that means that you would need to allow for some diversity according to regional difference, cultural differences, so on and so forth, while keeping activities interoperable in a way they serve the same goal and do not contradict each other.  These were elements we hope we would see in something that could be a blueprint for digital cooperation in the future.  Thank you very much.  

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you, Thomas, and thank you, Swiss, for the financial, political, and intellectual support.  You outlined quite a few ideas in this architecture the panel adopted at the first meeting in Nurich to focus on values that digital cooperation should aspire to, principles that digital cooperation should follow, and mechanism and modalities that digital cooperation should use. 

You outline all of the few principles inclusion, diversity, consensus building as important elements, among hundreds, if not thousands, of digital cooperation examples in mechanisms we have from digital public good to data to discussion on cybersecurity and other issues. 

This is one of the panel's aims to collect what exists, what is the reason that has been gathered in the IGF space and other spaces and to build on this wisdom and to move forward with this discussion while having broad support and inclusiveness. 

We have a question.  Sandra, please. 

>> AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Okay.  I'm Sandra from the EuroDIG European IGF.  I just learned the outcomes will be ready with recommendations by May or so.  And in this respect I'm wondering how will you evaluate your recommendation?  How will you revisit them after one year, after two years?  What ‑‑ how will they be used by the private sector by the community et cetera? 

I could think that the national and regional and also global IGFs are a great forum to look at the outcomes, to revisit them if the recommendations that you have made, if they are followed.  If not, why not?  What works?  What works not?  I would actually invite you already to the EuroDIG because this might be the first opportunity to publish these or a greater forum to speak about, get input on your recommendations.  Of course, that's not the time to evaluate them at the moment.  But a year later or two years later and probably also will help the IGF movement to keep track on a certain process and revisit one topic from one year to the other in terms of intercessional work and these things that are in development. 

I would just like to emphasize it and that EuroDIG might be a first attempt to represent your recommendations. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Sandra, definitely EuroDIG is both inspiration for some of the mechanism because as we know EuroDIG developed quite unique mechanisms in building the agenda and inclusion of different factors and also the venue where some of the recommendation could be tested or implemented.  Formally speaking, we're going to submit it to the Secretary‑General.  This is a formal requirement.  But what we've been hearing from Mr. Guterres and other officials involving this process is that we will probably offer this recommendation for the implementation to different stakeholders, in particular, stakeholders who contributed to the building of the recommendation during the consultation process. 

EuroDIG is definitely one forum, in addition to the African IGF and other regional and national IGF, as a place where recommendation could be implemented, tested and revisited in the spirit of policy making.  This is one of the approaches of the panel that we would also like to promote our drive policy making where you can test some solutions, get the feedback, and improve the processes further.  Thank you. 

>> AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Hi, my name is Sheetal Kumar, and I'm a program lead at Global Partners Digital, and I want to thank you for the organizing this session but also for in general the commitment to outreach that you have showed throughout the process.  And I have a few comments to make just drawing on a deliberations or other discussions that a group of more than ten civil society organizations and academic institutions or research institutions concluded or discussed yesterday when we were discussing how we might contribute to the panel's deliberations. 

So we would like to take this opportunity to emphasize the following values that we believe should guide digital cooperation.  Those are transparency, accountability, nondiscrimination, equality, diversity, responsiveness, and security.  In terms of the principles that should guide digital cooperation, we would emphasize fair process, collaborative approach, a bottom‑up approach, inclusivity, and consensus‑based decision making or a commitment with empathetic engagement with other communities.

One thing that came up in our discussions we would really urge the panel to consider refer to and build on previous relevant initiatives that I have already emphasized these values and principles.  It's encouraging to hear that that's a commitment you've already made.  Other initiatives is the information society, (?) The United Nations guiding principles on human rights, among others.  We'll be referring to those in our contributions. 

Lastly, I would like to say that we would emphasize as well that these values and principles should not only guide digital cooperation but also guide the panel's deliberations. 

For example, it would be interesting to hear how the panel is intending to ensure transparency and accountability in terms of how various inputs in the process is implemented in the final report and recommendations.  Thank you.  We look forward in engaging in the process going forward. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you for the input from the civil society and the research institutions.  You outlined quite a few concrete suggestions on values and principles. 

We will pass this comment to the panel members as input from our consultation session.  We would like invite you also to submit your official contribution by the end of the month, 30th of November, which is the deadline, the first deadline for submission of official contributions, which will constitute the first synthesis report.  Synthesis report will be input for the panel members for the January discussion which will be quite important for shaping the first draft of the report. 

When it comes to transparency and inclusiveness, this is approached by default except the events like the panel meeting itself, which is among the panel members.  Immediately after the panel meeting, we had a briefing three or four days after the first panel meeting where we provided information about discussion during the panel session. 

Transparency will also be supported by official, by the collection of the contribution that will be available at our website.  If the contributor agrees, it will be ‑‑ they will be made public.  We also plan to comment and provide the feedback. 

These days, as you know, there are many invitations for communities and individuals to have their say.  It could be sometimes frustrating not to have some sort of feedback.  Therefore, we'll put quite reasonable efforts to provide feedback to the ‑‑ for all contribution which are provided in this process. 

When it comes to transparency we have the town hall meetings.  I just returned from China where we had three town hall meetings in universities in Beijing, Sudra, and Hanju.  We're planning a town hall meetings at universities world‑wide local communities.  We would like to invite you to be part of this process. 

Digital changes are affecting most of us, and we have to move beyond our usual circles and to hear from the other communities, what do they think about digital future and digital cooperation? 

This is sort of a summary of transparency and inclusiveness aspect of your question, which I will say is the most specific in addition to your excellent contribution about values and principles. 

Please.  Nanjira, would you like to comment on this question also, Nikolai, and Cathy, please? 

>> NIKOLAI ASTRUP:  A quick comment from my side.  I think the values and principles that you mentioned are very much in line with the thinking of the panel.  We have a big discussion about those issues at the outset.  And I think we all agreed on the general approach to the panel's work.  And I have to say that the submission that you just made is very much in line with the whole panel's thinking on this. 

As for the previous intervention, I would say, though, although the panel's formal work will be to submit a report in April or May, this is, of course, for all of us, not the end.  It's just the beginning. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  We have a question from ‑‑ please. 

>> AUDIENCE MEMBER:  Me.  Thank you.  I'm Renata Aquino Ribeiro, a MAG member from the IGF.  I would like to thank HLPDC for accepting an invitation to come and participate on the main session, human rights, gender and youth tomorrow.  Natalie McShair, I don't know if she's here.  Hey, hi.  She will be speaking at the main session.  It took us quite awhile to get this arranged, but it's important that the panel is open to these dialogues.  And the IGF has so many intercessional activities, the BPF gender could also use some dialogue and the others, the DC gender as well sessions which are coming up, which I'm mostly involved in. 

But, yeah, I would like to thank that.  I think this is the way to go.  Creating dialogues should be not only on the events, on the on‑site events, but on the online work that the IGF does which is all year long, such as the HLPDC discussions continued online for a period of time.  Thank you. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you.  Nanjira, it's always difficult with remote participants.  We don't see you in the room, but please join us with your comments. 

>>  NANJIRA SAMBULI:  Sure.  Actually I do want to notify the room that there are some remote comments that I can see that should be brought into plenary. 

I think the point that was raised, whether it's from values, principles, modalities and all that, if you think about these as the what, the question is the how.  This is really where I think we're trying to bring in a new perspective. 

What has worked, for instance, in embedding the idea of transparency in the domain?  What has worked in trying to enforce certain principles and values, I think we're trying to draw from those insights as we call them illustrated action areas to show how they can be translated to the space of digital? 

I think many in the room will agree that we are not ‑‑ we're not keen for yet another re‑articulation of what has been said.  Particularly when it comes to the topic of human rights and human agency.  I personally am very interested in seeing examples and stories from all sectors around how these topics have been mainstreamed and how enforcement can, has, or could be done. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you, Nanjira for highlighting the how aspect.  Cathy? 

Nanjira, since I don't know who the remote moderator in the room, do we have a remote moderator in the room?  That would be great to get the comments. 

>> That's a good point.  I don't know where she is.  I can ask the question.  The question is from ^^mocha berry.  Is digital cooperation possible without digital trust at an international level.  The greatest enemy of digital cooperation and Internet of trust is digital unilateralism and digital protectionism.  With this approach, there is clearly reflected in U.S. national civil strategy 2018 all other countries can trust us, U.S. owned and controlled Internets and what's the meeting of norm making? 

U.S. unilateralism and nationalistic policy will soon lead to Internet fragmentation and what must be done. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you.  I think the question of trust is one of the underlying issues behind discussion of digital cooperation.  Secretary‑General highlighted a problem of deficit of trust in his speech at the U.N. general assembly, and we will be focusing on the track on digital security and trust but also unilateral activities and the conversation we're having today, engagement with communities world‑wide are ways how to build the trust. 

There is no magic in building trust.  It's a question of fair, open, engaging relations, listening carefully to the inputs, following on the inputs, as I indicated this question, it could be contra‑productive if we don't do something with your say. 

Those are small building blocks that the panel plans to use in order to build trust in our modus operandi and of course to contribute to building wider trust in digital cooperation by involving different communities and stakeholders.  Nikolai or Cathy? 

>> CATHY MULLIGAN:  Yeah.  Maybe I can just make a comment about the ‑‑ going back to Nanjira's points before mentioning trust.  There is ‑‑ so the principles that you mentioned were excellent and one of the issues that I think is personally is an issue is we have potentially very good examples of where those things have worked.  But I think there's poor dissemination across a lot of the digital community.  So if you talk to developers or large scale companies, quite often they are oblivious to the human rights declaration. 

Working out ways of how we can communicate and get more inclusion from them as well in those discussions would be extremely useful. 

And then in regards to trust, yes, it's an extremely important point.  And I think that Jovan, you made an important point, it's actually more about people than it is about the technology.  So ‑‑

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Good to hear from blockchain expert. 

>> CATHY MULLIGAN:  We can talk about that another time.  I don't think it creates trust as such.  Yeah, it's all about the people. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Nanjira, any comment from your side? 

>>  NANJIRA SAMBULI:  Again, the reality is we are contending with technological realities against very complex political contexts.  I've always asked are their technical hacks to political will?  And I think the answer is not. 

So really these are the questions.  I don't think that we are going to try and postulate we'll have the answers, but we are posing these questions because we want to hear from anyone even at local levels where there are promises or stories of change and hope and promise in having these things not only articulated but being enforced. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Any other comments or question?  It seems that we explained quite well the main aims of the panel and how we're going to move forward.  We're looking forward to your inputs, your comments, your suggestions.  I will pass the floor for concluding remarks from the panelists and with that, I would like to invite you to join us to consult with Madelleine here, Claire, our colleague from the Secretariat and to find ways and means to involve your local communities, your universities, government departments, civil society organizations in this discussion. 

Nikolai, please. 

>> NIKOLAI ASTRUP:  Well, thank you, Jovan.  Returning to my original topic that I mentioned in my introduction, we would really like your inputs on the digital public goods agenda, so please do reach out if you have ideas and inputs to that process.  I believe that can be truly a huge contribution to the transformational change that is needed in order for us to achieve the sustainable development goals by 2030. 

And in terms of the input we have gotten today, I think it's the values and principles that we base our work on is going to be important, and we value the input that we have gotten on those things today. 

Also, I would like to say that the broad consultations that we're doing now is also an important part of the process of reaching something that can truly be useful on the other end.  There is, as Jovan mentioned, there's a timeline at the end of the month to ‑‑ on the 30th of November to submit your inputs and please do so.  Because it will definitely be an important part of our work going forward.  So thank you so much. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Thank you.  Cathy, please? 

>> CATHY MULLIGAN:  Sure.  Yep.  Just to reiterate we would be welcoming of any input from yourselves around good examples of digital cooperation.  Personally I would be very interested in examples where you think it has failed.  Because quite often we can learn just as much from failure as we can from success. 

And those of you who have input regarding the integration of more human aspects in today, I would be very interested in taking some of those discussions as well.  Thank you.

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Nanjira.  Thank you, Cathy. 

>>  NANJIRA SAMBULI:  Just emphasizing again what Minister Astrup and Cathy have said.  I'll say by example, for instance, I'm joining in virtually in Kitale and come to see whether these topics have been coming up in the heart of Africa and tech communities.  There's a lot of entrepreneurs and investors will be gathered here and getting the perspectives of people at the heart of creating these technologies is something I'm seeking.  We also encourage others to help with that kind of outreach.  I think part of the panel's mandate going beyond silos is something we could use as much help as possible in going into sectors and spaces that we would not naturally align with.  Thank you. 

>> JOVAN KURBALIJA:  Nanjira, while you're discussing topics in the different sessions and the open forum during the next three days, please try to reflect on these three questions.  What would be the values that we should aspire to in discussing, for example, artificial intelligence, ethics those are very specific in the agenda and whether the practical mechanisms could be used for digital cooperation.  It will be reported by the session organizers as Cherif had indicated and will be included into the input from the IGF in the panel's deliberation. 

Have your say.  We need to hear your ideas and suggestions.  And what we can ensure that they will be treated properly with utmost dedication and utmost care with the necessary feedback.  Thank you very much for finding time to join us today.  We're looking forward to hearing from you and seeing you soon.  All the best.  Thank you. 

 

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