You are here

Public Call for Describing the additional IGF support to the NRIs

 

IGF 2017: National and Regional IGF Initiatives

Public Call for Describing the additional IGF support to the NRIs
- Summary of Received Inputs -

 

About

 

  1. During the first IGF 2017 face to face meeting of the Multistakeholder Advisory Group in Geneva, the IGF Secretariat’s NRIs Focal Point informed that the NRIs have submitted a joint submission to the IGF 2016 Taking Stock process that among other things, calls for the NRIs to organize a main session for the 2017 IGF as well as for the MAG to reconsider giving more space for the NRIs individual, substantive representation.
     
  2. The MAG advised the NRIs to submit a concrete proposal on the possible models of their representation and integration in the IGF 2017 annual programme.
     
  3. The IGF Secretariat launched a public call for the NRIs to submit their inputs to within a one-week long initial deadline, that later on request of some of the NRIs, was extended for another week. The Call as sent to the NRIs through the NRIs mailing list is attached to this summary Report as Annex A1.
     
  4. The IGF Secretariat will share and discuss the content and format of this summary with the NRIs before submitting to the MAG for their further discussion. The NRIs discussion on this matter is scheduled to be during the NRIs Virtual Meeting IV on 4 April 2017, at 15:00 p.m. UTC.

 

Number of received inputs and purpose of this summary

  1. Until the given deadline, the IGF Secretariat received in total thirty-three (33) submission. Out of these, thirty (30) inputs were submitted by the NRIs coordinators, as per the IGF Secretariat’s list of the NRIs coordinators. Other three (3) submissions came from the NRIs community of individual initiatives, including among them, one MAG member. All inputs, in their original text as received, are attached to this summary as Annex A2. Distinction is made among the submissions that came from the NRIs coordinators and the ones came from the wider NRIs community, as indicated in the table within the Annex A2.
     
  2. The purpose of this summary report is providing formatted input to the NRIs to discuss how the final submission to the MAG should be formatted.

 

Summary of received inputs

  1. Summary of received inputs is done in line with the structure of the sent Public Call. Namely, the section A of the call asked the NRIs to describe the NRIs additional support, offering three broad options. Thus, the section below summarizes the section A, per each of three offered potential alternatives. The section B of the Call, asked for the integration of the NRIs into the IGF annual programme, and is summarized below the section A summary.

 

Section A Summary

  1. The section A asked for inputs on three broad possible alternatives, taking into account previously suggested ideas by some of the NRIs.

 

  • Section A, Option 1
  1. The section A, option 1 called for inputs on the following: ‘’In consultations with the NRIs, the MAG Chair to appoint one MAG member affiliated with the NRIs, for 2017 term, that will be representing the interests of the NRIs in regards to the IGF annual programme.’’
     
  2.  Support for this option came from thirteen (13) initiatives. Three (3) individual submissions that were classified as Others did not support this option.
     
  3. In terms of the provided content, the following key points were raised:
     
  • In line with informing that the submitted input does not represent a consensus based view of the members of their Organizing Team, one initiative gave a narrow preference to this option, with noting that this alternative does not provide clear explanation on how the NRIs representation in the MAG will improve linkages into the global IGF. It was suggested that this representative should be either appointed by the MAG Chair or selected by a committee or the entire MAG.
     
  • One initiative stated that it is important to keep strong connection to the MAG given the fact that the development of the annual meeting programme is MAG responsibility. It was underlined that this option allows space for having a more defined function of this representative, where a set of responsibilities will be taken by this dedicated member that will be mandated by the NRIs to support their interests in the MAG. It was noted that this kind of practice proved to be effective during 2016 year.
     
  • In terms of this representative role description, some stated that it should be to coordinate the work of the NRIs regarding their best possible representation at the IGF annual meeting. Others stated that this person should act as a liaison between the NRIs and the MAG, and be knowledgeable of the NRIs work.
     
  • Some described that the role should include convening the NRIs quarterly meetings; offering assistance where needed; motivation of unrepresented regions to have their own initiatives organized; acting as a mediator between the NRIs and the IGF Secretariat in order to provide advices on financing the NRIs, to disseminate information on the IGF principles and to work closely with the IGF Secretariat’s Focal Point to the NRIs.
     
  • The key responsibilities for this person, according to some views would be to represent the NRIs on the MAG and to report to the NRIs on the developments and outcomes of the MAG meetings.
     
  • Some described the role in a way that the representative would be chairing the NRIs (virtual) meetings and ensuring the corresponding inputs be conveyed to the MAG.
     
  • Considering the appointment of this person, some were of opinion that the MAG Chair should appoint one person, while others suggested that the whole MAG should decide on this. Some stated that the NRIs among themselves should decide on this.
     
  • As some understand that this position would require a significant amount of time, it was suggested that the MAG Chair to appoint one or two ‘vice-coordinators’.
     
  • Some suggested to consider the regional diversity when appointing a MAG member.
     
  • It was suggested that this representative works closely with the IGF Secretariat’s NRIs Focal Point.
     
  • Concerns were raised in light of how the representative would be chosen and how the NRIs would reach a consensus on this matter.
     
  • Others shared a concern that this option could dilute the NRIs voices. Given the set of responsibilities of the MAG members, it will be difficult for this representative to focus on assigned work.

 

  • Section A, Option 2
  1. The section A, option 2 called for the inputs on following alternative: ‘‘The MAG members that are actively affiliated with the NRIs should be representing the interests of the NRIs on the MAG, (in regards to the annual programme) in addition to the interests of their particular stakeholder groups, while keeping in mind that  all MAG members act in their individual capacity with a commitment to the overall success of the IGF when contributing to the IGF annual programme and intersessional activities during the 2017 term.’’
     
  2. Support for this option came from three (3) initiatives. One (1) individual submission, classified as Others supported this option as well.
     
  3. In terms of the provided content, the following key points were raised:
  4. This option represents the spirit of multi-sectorial participation, as there are approximately 15 MAG 2017 members affiliated with the NRIs.
  5.  It was noted that this option is the most practical, given the total number of the MAG members that are affiliated with the NRIs. It was suggested to make this information available.
  6. It was said that the MAG members should communicate with the NRIs on their specific issues.
  7. Some noted that it would be challenging for these representatives to balance the position of a stakeholder group they belong to and the NRIs position.
  8. Some stated that this option is not a good solution as not all NRIs are represented on the MAG. Also, it was said that this could influence the equality between the MAG members, as some will be given the additional authority with this role.

 

  • Section A, Option 3

 

  1. The section A, option 3 called for the inputs to the following: ‘’A person appointed by the NRIs, that is not a MAG member, that will be representing the interests of the NRIs during the MAG meetings, in regards to the annual IGF programme. As you know the MAG meetings are open to everyone, and the NRIs could explore this option as well.’’

 

  1. Support for this option came from fourteen (14) initiatives. Two (2) individual submissions that were classified as Others supported this option as well.

 

  1. In terms of the provided content, the following key points were raised by some of the initiatives:

 

  1. It was noted that the communication between the NRIs and the MAG will be more effective if it would have a speaker coming from the NRIs, and not an external person.
  2. The appointed person will be acting as a liaison between the NRIs and the MAG, with the task to channel the communication related to the IGF overall programme and other relevant activities between the MAG and the NRIs.
  3. Individual communication with the NRIs should also be done by this person, vis-à-vis gathering needed inputs.
  4. This option goes in line with the need of the NRIs to create an autonomous position to represent their interests. In addition, this option prevents creating any collision or even the principle of multistakeholderism.
  5. As this position requires in depth knowledge about the NRIs, it was suggested that Ms. Marilyn Cade should support the NRIs in this role, as previously done.
  6. It was noted that the work done by the IGF Secretariat and the NRIs Substantive Coordinator was effective and some called for continuation.
  7. The driver of the overall process could be a past MAG member that understands both the MAG and the NRIs.
  8. It was suggested that the role of the appointed person be discussed by the NRIs on the dedicated virtual meetings. Possible work tasks of this representative could include the collaboration with the IGF Secretariat’s NRIs Focal Point regarding the work related to the NRIs; speaking on behalf of the NRIs at relevant meetings (e.g. MAG meeting); improving the visibility of the NRIs and working on the NRIs representation at the IGF annual meeting.
  9. Appointed person must have in depth knowledge about the NRIs, individually and collectively.
  10. It was suggested that the IGF Secretariat’s NRIs Focal Point should be taking the responsibility of representing the NRIs interest and liaising with the MAG members on regular basis to create synergies.
  11. Some were of opinion that this option raises concerns related to the accountability and transparency, in line with expressing that there is no good mechanism for the NRIs to choose this person.

 

 

Section B Summary

  1. Within the section B, it was explained that the joint submission of the NRIs was read during the first IGF 2017 MAG face to face meeting, where it was noted that the NRIs showed interest to organize a main session for this year’s IGF, as well as to host a Coordination session as during the IGF 2016 meeting. The submission also called for more representation of the NRIs within the IGF annual meeting’s programme. In this regard, the NRIs have been asked if there will be an interest for some of them to partner with other individual NRIs and organize substantive sessions on a topic of their mutual interest.
     
  2. Twenty-one (21) initiative expressed their interest to partner with other NRIs and organize a substantive session on a topic that is of mutual interest.
     
  3. For some the so far practice was that the Government, that was given a slot for the Open Forum, offered a space within it for the national IGF of their country to organize a session.
     
  4. Some noted that this could be opportunity to learn about the issues in other countries and regions, as well as to create synergies among the individual NRIs.
     
  5. Some expressed concerns that collaboration with other NRIs on the organization of the joint session is challenging as it requires significant amount of time and coordination.
     
  6. It was proposed that the length of these sessions could be between 60 and 90 minutes, depending on the topic. Some noted that the most optimal time would be 60 minutes as the 90 minutes sessions are too long for the audience.
     
  7. Some noted that the posed question in the initial call was confusing, and that it suggests a fragmented process that may not attract the right audience.
     
  8. In any case, these sessions should not be a substitute to the main session that brings visibility to the NRIs. Many reiterated the importance of having a main session.
     
  9. One initiative proposed the topic on digital rights for joint organization by interested NRIs.

 

Next Steps

  1. The IGF Secretariat will summarize the received inputs and distribute the summary report through the NRIs mailing list.
     
  2. The summary report will be an input to the NRIs Virtual meeting IV, scheduled to be on 4 April at 15:00 p.m. UTC. The purpose of the meeting will be to define further actions on received inputs and the format of the final submission to the MAG.
     
  3. For any questions related to the summary report, contact the IGF Secretariat, NRIs Focal Point at: [email protected].

 

 

Annex A1

Call sent to the NRIs

A. Your inputs needed: defining the NRIs support 

Within the IGF Secretariat, the NRIs will continue to have the support from a dedicated Focal Point. 

We would like to kindly ask for the inputs from each initiative, to define what kind of additional support is needed, especially in regards to the options that some of you previously have mentioned, as indicated below: 

Option 1 
In consultations with the NRIs, the MAG Chair to appoint one MAG member affiliated with the NRIs, for 2017 term, that will be representing the interests of the NRIs in regards to the IGF annual programme. 
If this is the option you would find useful, please inform the IGF Secretariat and describe the role for this position. 

Option 2 
The MAG members that are actively affiliated with the NRIs should be representing the interests of the NRIs on the MAG, (in regards to the annual programme) in addition to the interests of their particular stakeholder groups, while keeping in mind that all MAG members act in their individual capacity with a commitment to the overall success of the IGF when contributing to the IGF annual programme and intersessional activities during the 2017 term. 
Please note that there are approximately 15 MAG members* that are directly affiliated with the NRIs, meaning that they have a seat with the Organizing Committees of their respective initiatives. 

Option 3 
A person appointed by the NRIs, that is not a MAG member, that will be representing the interests of the NRIs during the MAG meetings, in regards to the annual IGF programme. 
As you know the MAG meetings are open to everyone, and the NRIs could explore this option as well. 

Whichever option you endorse, kindly submit the description of the duties, as you see them.     

B. Your inputs needed: NRIs participation at the IGF annual meeting 

The NRIs joint submission to the IGF 2016 Taking Stock was read during the MAG meeting. As you know, the submission called for the following: 
 

1. The NRIs to organize a substantive, interactive main sessions for this year's IGF. 
2. The NRIs coordination session to be organized. 
3. Integration of the NRIs in the overall IGF programme, in a way that a set of dedicated, thematic sessions be offered to the NRIs as an option.
The MAG asked for a concrete proposal to be submitted, in order to explore this option in particular. 
Therefore, in regards to this third option, and if there is interest within the NRIs, we would appreciate if you could submit answers to the following questions: 

a) Would your initiative be interested to organize a substantive, interactive session during the IGF 2017 meeting? 
b) If yes, would you be interested to liaise with other NRIs and other stakeholder groups to co-organize these sessions, in order to offer a comprehensive overview of the agreed topic(s)? 
c) How much time would you need for that session (45, 60 and 90 minutes slots or other)? 

 

 

Annex A2

 LIST OF RECEIVED INPUTS AVAILABLE HERE

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