17.04.2014 - Communication & Information Sector

UNESCO to take part in NETmundial conference

A high-level delegation from UNESCO will contribute to the Global Multistakeholder Meeting on the Future of Internet Governance in Sao Paolo, 23-24 April.

Deputy Director General, Mr Getachew Engida, and the Director of UNESCO’s Division for Knowledge Societies, Mr Indrajit Banerjee, will raise issues related to UNESCO’s mandate – particularly on freedom of expression and access to knowledge.

“Also on our agenda is to promote participation in UNESCO’s comprehensive study of Internet issues, which we have launched according to the mandate of the November 2014 General Conference of the 195 member states of the Organisation,” said Engida.

The delegation will be supported by the UNESCO Office in Brasilia, headed by Lucien André Muñoz, and by Guilherme Canela Godoi, Regional Advisor for Communication and Information in Montevideo.

NETmundial is convened to discuss two important issues relevant for the future evolution of the Internet, in an open and multistakeholder fashion: Internet Governance Principles and Roadmap for the future evolution of the Internet Governance Ecosystem.

UNESCO has submitted two substantial written contributions to NETmundial on:

  1. Internet Universality: A Means Towards Building Knowledge Societies and the Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda;
  2. UNESCO comprehensive study on Internet-related issues.

UNESCO contributions have received positive feedback from stakeholders and the proposed Internet Universality principles including freedom of expression, openness, accessibility to all and multi-stakeholder participation have been widely quoted and reiterated by stakeholders.

UNESCO has proposed several amendments to the draft outcome statement on its paragraphs 6, 15, 25, 32 and 33 and 34, highlighting the need  to address social inclusion, gender, Africa, Small Island Developing States, open access to education resources, and Media and Information Literacy.

While in Sao Paolo, members of the UNESCO team will attend a consultation on freedom of expression convened by the UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Opinion and Expression, and a consultation meeting on Internet indicators with NIC.BR and LACNIC.

There will also be discussions with Regional Centre of Studies for the Development of the Information Society under the auspices of UNESCO (CETIC.br), and electronic publishing partnership SCIELO.

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