IGF 2019 WS #426 Governance of Access and Data on Platforms

Organizer 1: Max Senges, Google

Speaker 1: Max Senges, Private Sector, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 2: Urs Gasser, Civil Society, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 3: Malavika Jayaram, Civil Society, Asia-Pacific Group

Policy Question(s): 

Fair competition between online services and esp. platforms has become a hot political issue and going forward, these cases will become even more complicated as “data” has become a new subject. Our workshop will facilitate a deliberation between various expert stakeholders and IGF participants addressing the intersection between innovation and regulation and what practical steps ought to be taken to ensure fair access to business opportunities esp. for small and medium sized ventures, while providing and honoring user rights.
A core issue being debated is whether existing rules are adequate for the tech sector and how to optimize governance instruments to provide reasonable monitoring and control mechanisms. What is the evidence that antitrust is lagging or not otherwise up to the task? What does the available evidence show on the state of “innovation”? And what is the relationship between the competitiveness of markets and the rate or level of innovation?
Should regulators seek to break up firms to remedy innovation problems? Or would forced sharing of data or interoperability be a remedy that the competition authorities ought to consider? If so, under what circumstances? Can we develop standards and an international framework under which forced sharing of data should be considered or even made so easy that it encourages voluntary sharing of data? How can we make sure that the shared data will be used to the highest possible benefit of as many as possible - society, economy and the general public?

Relevance to Theme: Big online platforms like YouTube, Twitter or Google Maps produce a very significant percentage of the data generated online. Hence it is key to identify good practices in terms of user control, access management and data mobility practices in order to allow for fair competition.

Relevance to Internet Governance: Online platforms have become essential infrastructure for users and businesses to communicate, buy and sell. While all platforms are different, there are certain common elements and potentially governance principles that can help guide international governance practice that is shaped by all stakeholders. This workshop brings together experts from the various stakeholder groups to deliberate about best practices, lessons learned and to bootstrap collaboration in this field.


Birds of a Feather - Classroom - 90 Min

Description: This will be a typical birds of a feather session - we will start by sharing the analysis, principles and questions out lined in the input paper and than hold a lively discussion where participants and resource persons (speakers) can exchange their views.

Expected Outcomes: We aim to collect actual cases as well as theoretic analysis of online platform governance instruments and practices. On this basis the organizers are interested to continue the deliberation both in the IGF context as well as in other relevant fora.
We are happy to collaborate with other workshop organizers in the same field to ensure that our session is complementary and to drive collaboration in this space beyond the IGF.

Onsite Moderator: 

Max Senges, Private Sector, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)

Online Moderator: 

Juliana Nolasco, Private Sector, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)


Max Senges, Private Sector, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)

Discussion Facilitation: 

We are planning to develop an input paper that outlines analysis, principles and questions meant to stimulate deliberation. Hence all contributors (listed and in the room) will receive the material in advance so that everybody has a reference point.

Online Participation: 

we will allow remote comments and questions via voice and of course written contributions

Proposed Additional Tools: google docs as collaboration platform for the text


GOAL 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
GOAL 10: Reduced Inequalities
GOAL 12: Responsible Production and Consumption