Multilingualism in Cyberspace Conference Organized by UNESCO and Partners in Mali
"Multilingualism for Cultural Diversity and Participation of All in Cyberspace" is the theme of a thematic meeting in preparation for the second phase of the World Summit on the Information Society, that UNESCO is organizing in Bamako, Mali, on 6 and 7 May 2005, in partnership with the African Academy of Languages (ACALAN), the Agence Intergouvernementale de la Francophonie (AIF) and the Government of Mali.
The Conference builds on the recognition of the importance of cultural and linguistic diversity in the digital world and will highlight the fundamental importance of removing barriers to access and participation of all on the Internet.
The meeting will draw on the expertise of all stakeholders, including governments, international, regional and national organizations, academic, scientific and professional communities, non-governmental organizations and other actors. It will identify and present concrete actions in the area of linguistic diversity that governmental and non-governmental players can implement, both on the policy and application level, to achieve a multilingual cyberspace.
The discussions will focus on multilingualism from two perspectives: policies and standards needed to ensure inclusive knowledge societies; and global experiences in building a multilingual cyberspace.
The meeting is open for the participation of experts from governments, international organizations, academia, the private sector and civil society.
The results of the meeting will be disseminated at international fora and will be made available to the participants of the second phase of WSIS in Tunis through a Report, including recommendations on the implementation of activities in the field of linguistic diversity in cyberspace, as advocated in the WSIS Action Plan.
The event is one of UNESCO's thematic meetings in preparation for the second meeting of the World Summit on the Information Society (Tunis, Tunisia, 16-18 November 2005) Other meetings - all contributions to operationalizing the Organization's concept of "Knowledge Societies - that have already been or will be organized this year, include a meeting on "Freedom of Expression in Cyberspace" (3-4 February 2005, UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, France); "ICTs for Capacity-Building: Critical Success Factors" (11-13 May 2005, UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, France) and "Cultural Diversity" (17- 9 May 2005, St. Petersburg, Russian Federation).