About WSIS+10

Why did UNESCO host he Multistakeholder WSIS+10 Review Event?

UNESCO was requested by Member States to host such event of interdisciplinary and multistakeholder nature on Knowledge Societies, because:

  • Since its inception, the Organization has been in fact at the heart of international thinking about the impact of the changing information and communication landscape;
  • UNESCO also shaped the concept of “Knowledge Societies” in which people have capabilities not just to acquire information but also to transform it into knowledge and understanding, which empowers them to enhance their livelihoods and contribute to the social and economic development of their society and finally;
  • UNESCO is designated as one of the leading agencies along with ITU and UNDP, and contributed to the advancement of WSIS goals, by facilitating the implementation of six action lines of its responsibility, co-organizing WSIS Fora and by offering a WSIS KC online platform.

What was the objective of this Review Event?

The first WSIS+10 review event with an analysis of trends and possible recommendations was an integral part of the overall WSIS review process. Outcomes will feed directly into the subsequent review meetings and into the 2015 UNGA overall review. Results will also be reported to UNESCO’s Executive Board and to the 37th session of the General Conference of UNESCO (November 2013).

The intention is also to integrate findings into the UN MDGs review process and into a possible post-2015 sustainable development framework.

What was the format of this Review Event?

The event offered a multistakeholder set-up with the following components:

  • Plenary sessions
  • Keynote speeches
  • Forward looking thematic meetings
  • UNESCO Special Internet Event, focusing on Internet topics within UNESCO’s mandate, such as multilingualism, privacy, freedom of expression and local content.
  • High-level Roundtable
  • UNESCO Future Forum: Trends, forecasts and recommendations
  • UNGIS high-level and working level meetings
  • Other meeting requests included: WSIS+10 related meetings by IFAP, WSA - World Summit Awards, publication launches, and Broadband Commission - Working Group on Education meeting.

The outline of this Review Event is available online.

What is the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS)?

As per the UN General Assembly Resolution 56/183, the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) took place in two phases. The first phase took place in Geneva from 10 to 12 December 2003 and the second phase took place in Tunis, from 16 to 18 November 2005.

WSIS provided a forum in which multiple stakeholders including international organizations, governments, the private sector and civil society could discuss the opportunities of the new information and communication environment, and also address challenges such as the inequality in access to information and communication that is called the ‘digital divide’.

The Summit output in a set of outcome documents:

WSIS also resulted in the creation of:

What was the WSIS+10 Review Process?

The implementation of WSIS outcomes will be reviewed by the UN General Assembly in 2015 in pursuance of the Resolution 60/252 and of paragraph 111 of the Tunis Agenda for the Information Society.

In view of defining a preparatory process, UNGIS, in consultation with stakeholders, elaborated an action plan. It envisaged a multistakeholder review event in 2013 hosted by UNESCO and a high-level review event in 2014 hosted by ITU. The outcomes of these events will feed into the UNGA WSIS and MDG reviews in 2015. 


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