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IGF 2018 DC Community Connectivity: When The Unconnected Build Connectivity (DC3)

DC: 

Dynamic Coalition on Community Connectivity (DC3)

Round Table - 90 Min

Subtheme: 
Description: 

The Dynamic Coalition on Community Connectivity (DC3) provides a common platform involving all interested stakeholders in a cooperative analysis of the community network model, exploring how such networks may be used to sustainably expand Internet connectivity while empowering Internet users.

The DC3 session 2018 has been organised through email interactions on the DC3 mailing-list ( http://listas.altermundi.net/pipermail/dc3/ ) as well as through a face-to-face meeting, held at RightsCon 2018.

Session panellists will present their contributions to "The Community Network Manual: How to Build the Internet Yourself ” which is the official 2018 outcome of DC3 and is a joint publication of the ITU, FGV and ISOC. Furthermore, the session will stimulate discussion with stakeholders that are developing community network-related initiatives and that could become DC3 partners.

The goal of the Community Network Manual is to describe how community networks (CNs) can be build, organised and deployed, thus presenting toolkits, guidelines and instructions to be used by all interested stakeholders for the concrete constructions of such networks. Notably, the session speakers will explore low cost hardware and infrastructure could be used to deploy a CN; software and applications that can be used to run a CN; difficulties that may be faced to develop, organise CN and how to make them scalable and sustainable initiatives.

The Community Network Manual is the third volume of a trilogy demonstrating the vitality, quality and interest of the contributions, projects and policy suggestions developed by DC3 members. It also proves that such vitality, quality and interest are not decreasing over time but, on the contrary, ideas and initiatives developed by DC3 members are increasing, cross-fertilising each other’s, while some of the most relevant institutions in the world are recognising their relevance and impact.

Previous DC3 reports were dedicated, in 2017, to “Community networks: the Internet by the people, for the people” (see http://communityconnectivity.xyz/ ) and, in 2016, to “Community Connectivity: Building the Internet from Scratch” (see https://bit.ly/2gZB2kn ) and are freely available, under Creative Commons License.

Free copies of the volume will be distributed at the session and the book will be released under Creative Commons License, to foster the greatest accessibility of research and information regarding community networks.

Organizers: 

Luca Belli, FGV  |  Nicolas Echániz, Altermundi

Speakers: 
  • Mr Luca Belli, FGV
  • Ms Jane Coffin, ISOC
  • Ms Stavroula Magleva, University of Thessaly
  • Mr Spencer Sevilla, University of Washington
  • Mr Nicolas Echániz, AlterMundi
  • Mr Roger Baig Viñas, Guifi.net
  • Ms Karla Velasco, Rhizomatica/Redes TIC AC
  • Mr Félix Tréguer, CNRS
  • Ms Virginie Aubrée, University of Trento
Report: 

- Session Type DC

 

- Title:  Community Networks: When The Unconnected Build Connectivity

 

- Date & Time: Monday, 12 November, 2018 - 11:20 to 12:20

 

- Organizer(s): Organizer 1: Luca Belli, Fundação Getuio Vargas (FGV)

Organizer 2: Nicolas Echániz, Altermundi

 

- Chair/Moderator:  Luca Belli, FGV

 

- Rapporteur/Notetaker:  Luã Fergus Oliveira da Cruz, Youth Observatory

 

- List of speakers and their institutional affiliations (Indicate male/female/ transgender male/ transgender female/gender variant/prefer not to answer):

    Mr Luca Belli, FGV

    Ms Jane Coffin, ISOC

    Ms Stavroula Magleva, University of Thessaly

    Mr Spencer Sevilla, University of Washington

    Mr Nicolas Echániz, AlterMundi

    Mr Roger Baig Viñas, Guifi.net

    Ms Muy-Cheng Peich, Bibliothèques Sans Frontières

    Mr Félix Tréguer, CNRS

    Ms Virginie Aubrée, University of Trento

- Theme (as listed here): Digital Inclusion & Accessibility

 

- Subtheme (as listed here):  COMMUNITY NETWORKS

 

- Please state no more than three (3) key messages of the discussion. [150 words or less]

1. Community networks (CNs) improve connectivity while empowering Internet users. Community networks rely on the active participation of local communities in the design, development, and management of network infrastructure as a common resource, and help achieve the UN's Sustainable Development Agenda by facilitating access to information

 2. CNs give rise to new infrastructures, new governance models, new business opportunities, and facilitate the free flow of information and knowledge, filling the lacunae left by the traditional Internet access-provision paradigm.

3. The Community Network Manual is the 2018 outcome of the Dynamic Coalition on Community Connectivity (DC3). Its goal is to provide guidance on how to build, organise, and deploy CNs. It offers toolkits, guidelines, and instructions to be used by all interested stakeholders for the concrete constructions of such networks. All interested stakeholder are invited to join DC3 members for presentation of the CN Manual and to freely share it.

 Please elaborate on the discussion held, specifically on areas of agreement and divergence. [150 words] Examples: There was broad support for the view that…; Many [or some] indicated that…; Some supported XX, while others noted YY…; No agreement…

 

Community Networks are networks structured to be open, unrestricted, and to respect net neutrality.  They rely on the active participation of local communities in the design, development, deployment, and management of shared infrastructure as a common resource. They are managed democratically by group of individuals and entities such as NGOs, local businesses, and/or public administrations.

There was broad agreement amongst panellists on the benefits of Community Networks as a promising strategy allowing individuals to build connectivity. Policy and regulation should facilitate their development. 

 

Panellists’ talks were based on their contributions to tha 2018 Outcome of DC3 : « The Community Network Manual: How to Build the Internet Yourself » published by FGV, ITU and InternetSociety, available here http://bibliotecadigital.fgv.br/dspace/handle/10438/25696

 

 

- Please describe any policy recommendations or suggestions regarding the way forward/potential next steps. [100 words]

 

Reduced regulatory obligations for community networks as regards license and authorisations, as they are generally small size non for profit organisation essentially acting in the public interest. Allow more flexible use of spectrum. 

Ms Jane Coffin, ISOC

Work with different partners and communities, instead of doing the work for them.

Panellists identified the following recommendations:

  • Analise regulatory experiences and identify best practices.
  • Development of open-source devices for community networks
  • It is key to have a support system, helping people communicate and support the community inside and the network.
  • Need to scaling up, given that upscaling produces bigger networks that are stronger and more resilient.
  • Improve existing laws through proposals submissions to policymakers
  • It is important to share Guidelines for community networks to cope with legal requirements, as stressed in the Community Network Manual.
  • Create a common platform for interoperability which could be put at  the disposal of communities, while being adapted to their need

Importantly, legal sustainability of Community Networks is also dependent on the ability of Community Networks to engage in advocacy and try to change telecom policy, which does not consider their specific needs and is tailored for large incumbents. Policy-makers and CNs should address the various regulatory hurdles that hinder the growth and development of the CN movement and cooperate to move the debate forward.

- What ideas surfaced in the discussion with respect to how the IGF ecosystem might make progress on this issue? [75 words]

The work of the Dynamic Coalition on Community Connectivity was praised for as being an excellent venue for cooperation, synergy and elaboration of concrete outcomes. IGF should focus more on outcome oriented initiatives.   

 

- Please estimate the total number of participants.

 

80

- Please estimate the total number of women and gender-variant individuals present.

 

40

- To what extent did the session discuss gender issues, and if to any extent, what was the discussion? [100 words]

None

Session Time: 
Monday, 12 November, 2018 - 11:20 to 12:20
Room: 
Salle VII

Contact Information

United Nations
Secretariat of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF)

Villa Le Bocage
Palais des Nations,
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland

igf [at] un [dot] org
+41 (0) 229 173 678