Stakeholders to review UNESCO study on access, free expression, privacy and ethics on the internet

Who: Some 300 participants from governments, civil society, academia, the private sector, the technical community, inter-governmental and international organizations as well as innovators and pioneers

What: will examine internet-related issues with an emphasis on freedom of expression and privacy, access, ethics and multi-stakeholder participation on the internet in a conference that will feature presentations by a wide range of speakers from all parts of the world

Where: UNESCO Headquarters in Paris

When: 3 – 4 March, 9.30 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Outcome: The conference will examine and finalize a comprehensive study on internet-related issues, entitled Keystone to foster inclusive Knowledge Societies, a work in progress compiled through an ambitious open consultation over the past year. An outcome statement will be submitted to the UNESCO Executive Board. The options outlined in the study will be presented to UNESCO’s Member States when they meet to determine the Organization’s programme and priorities at the next General Conference in late 2015. The study also represents a significant contribution to the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS)+10 Review process and the post-2015 international development agenda.

Background: UNESCO’s 195 Member States in 2013 requested the Organization to conduct a comprehensive and consultative multi-stakeholder study on internet-related issues within UNESCO's fields of competence. As the United Nations Organization mandated to promote the free flow of ideas by word and image, UNESCO has had a long involvement in issues pertaining to the internet, including the World Summit on the Information Society and the Internet Governance Forum.

UNESCO has also been championing the use of information technologies to create and share knowledge. It believes that information technologies can significantly contribute to building inclusive “knowledge societies” in which people and communities are able to access, create, share and transform information and data and turn it into pertinent and valuable knowledge.

Partners and sponsors: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland, Sweden, the Netherlands, Google, the Walt Disney Company, EURid, Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN)

Media Accreditation: UNESCO Press Service, Djibril Kebe, d.kebe@unesco.org +33 (0)1 45 68 17 41, Isabelle Le Fournis, i.le-fournis(at)unesco.org +33 (0)1 45 68 17 48