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In 2015, UNESCO put the concept of “Internet Universality” at the heart of its work to promote an internet that works for all. Internet Universality points to four “fundamental norms that have been embodied in the broad evolution of the Internet to date, and which provide a comprehensive way to understand how multiple different aspects are part of a wider whole.” These norms – known for short as the ROAM principles – are concerned with:
Multistakeholder participation (M).
In June 2017, UNESCO launched a year-long programme of consultation to develop a set of Internet Universality indicators, covering these four fundamental norms and the cross-currents between them. A framework of quantitative and qualitative indicators will be developed to help governments and other stakeholders to assess their own national internet environments, and to promote the values associated with Internet Universality. Special attention will be paid to gender and to the needs and interests of children and young people.
Work on the project to define Internet Universality indicators is being led for UNESCO by the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) on behalf of the Internet Indicators Consortium, which includes, apart from APC, ict Development Associates, Research ICT Africa and LIRNEasia.
Consultation with stakeholders plays a central part in developing the indicator framework. The first phase of consultation, from June to October 2017, will be concerned with broad principles and ideas for the framework as a whole.
The second phase, from November 2017 to March 2018, will be concerned with specific indicators. This is in an invitation to participate in the first stage of the online consultation. In this stage, we are asking for your views on what you think should be included in the indicator framework.
Towards the end of 2017, we will be publishing a draft set of options for specific indicators, and we will then ask for your views about those options.
Please participate in this first stage of the online consultation by completing the questionnaire available at https://en.unesco.org/internetuniversality/consultation. The closing date for submissions is 31 October 2017, but the earlier we have your views the better!
Contributions can be made in any of the six UN official languages (Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, Spanish). We intend to make contributions available online (in their original language) but, if you would prefer to contribute anonymously, please say so and we will not then publish your contribution.
Face-to-face consultations are also being organised by UNESCO and the consortium in various regions. Watch out for those opportunities in your region to contribute with your views. UNESCO and the APC-led consortium hope that you will be able to take part in the consultation and contribute your views, ideas and suggestions both during the face-to-face consultation in the regions and through the online platform. We look forward to hearing from you.