The WSIS+10 Process marks the ten-year milestone since the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), a two-phase summit (2003-2005) which defined the issues, policies and frameworks to tackle information and communication technologies (ICTs) to foster development. In 2015, the process is expected to culminate with a high-level meeting of the UN General Assembly on 15-16 December in New York. Between June and December, a number of events and milestones are planned as part of the preparatory process leading up to the high-level meeting.

Click on the timeline on the right for a visual map of events and milestones in June-December.

Latest updates

  • Governments have unanimously adopted the 17 Sustainable Development Goals during the UN Summit on 25-27 September. Among other goals, governments have committed to ‘significantly increase access to ICT and strive to provide universal and affordable access to the Internet in least developed countries by 2020’ (Goal 9.c). The Internet will also be essential for the implementation and monitoring of the SDGs. Read more on the GIP's webpage dedicated to the Internet and SDGs.
  • The second informal interactive WSIS Stakeholder Consultations are taking place on 19 October; registrations are now closed.
  • The Internet Society has published the WSIS+10 Matrix of countries’ positions (as at 25 Sept.), which summarises the positions of governments submitted during the preparatory process for the High-Level Meeting in December.
  • The non-paper is now available. Member states, observer states, and stakeholders were invited to comment on the non-paper by 18 September. Read the comments.
  • In August, over 60 submissions to the WSIS+10 'non-paper' were made by member and observer states, the private sector, civil society, international organisations, and the technical community. DiploFoundation and the Geneva Digital Watch analysed the submissions with the aim of providing an overview of the main themes which were addressed, their relevance by stakeholder group, and the most frequently used words. The analysis was carried out using the IG Barometer computational methodology. Read more about our findings. The non-paper, which aims to capture stakeholder perspectives on progress made in the implementation of the WSIS outcomes, on potential ICT gaps and areas for continued focus, on challenges, including bridging the digital divide, and on harnessing ICT for development, will be developed into the final outcome document to be adopted in December.
  • The preparatory process leading up to the high-level meeting moved to New York in June with the appointment of the two co-facilitators to lead the intergovernmental negotiation process – H.E. Mr Janis Mazeiks, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Latvia to the United Nations, and H.E. Mrs Lana Zaki Nusseibeh, Permanent Representative of United Arab Emirates to the United Nations – by the President of the UN General Assembly. The negotiation process will result in an outcome document for adoption at the high-level meeting of the General Assembly. The first Stocktaking Session for the overall review by the UN General Assembly of the implementation of the WSIS outcomes took place on 10-11 June 2015, and focused on the negotiation process that will lead up to December high-level meeting. An overview of the WSIS process to-date was presented. This session was followed by the First Preparatory Meeting of Member States on 1 July, and a first informal interactive WSIS Stakeholder Consultations on 2 July. 
  • On 22 July, the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Coordination and Management meeting adopted two draft resolutions on the 'Assessment of the progress made in the implementation of and follow-up to the outcomes of the World Summit on the Information Society', which recalls the overall review currently being undertaken by the General Assembly, and on 'Science, technology and innovation (STI) for development'. The resolutions were contained in the first chapter of the report (E/2015/31) of the Commission on Science and Technology for Development (CSTD), and were negotiated during the 18th session of the UN CSTD (4-8 May 2015) in which a report on the Implementing WSIS outcomes: A 10-year Review was also published. Earlier in June, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe also adopted a declaration on the WSIS+10 review process, emphasising the importance of the ongoing globalisation of the existing Internet governance model, and supporting an extension of the IGF mandate for another ten years.

Upcoming events

Past events

The WSIS+10 Process in detail

The WSIS+10 Process marks the ten-year milestone since the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS). The first WSIS phase, held in Geneva in 2003, concluded with the Geneva Declaration of Principles and the Geneva Plan of Action identifying specific action lines to advance the achievement of the millennium development goals.

The second phase, held in Tunis in 2005, reaffirmed the commitment to the Declaration of Principles (the Tunis Commitment) and designed an implementation mechanism for the action line (the Tunis Agenda for the Information Society). The report of the Working Group on Internet Governance (WGIG) was used as the basis for negotiations during the second summit.

The 2003-2005 WSIS phase saw the birth of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF); provided a formal set of framework principles for the multistakeholder approach; and introduced the process of Enhanced Cooperation, which was entrusted to Working Group on Enhanced Cooperation (WGEC) operating under the Commission on Science and Technology for Development (CSTD).

The Tunis Agenda also called for a ten-year review of WSIS, which formally kicked off in 2013 with UNESCO’s first WSIS review meeting in Paris 25-27 February. The Final Statement Information and Knowledge for All: An Expanded Vision and a Renewed Commitment was adopted in Paris, and later endorsed by UNESCO’s 37th session of the General Conference.

In June 2014, the WSIS+10 High-Level Event (HLE) agreed on a vision beyond 2015, endorsing the WSIS+10 Statement on Implementation of WSIS Outcomes and the WSIS+10 Vision for WSIS Beyond 2015. The WSIS+10 HLE, which took place in Geneva 10-11 June 2014, reviewed the progress made in the implementation of the WSIS outcomes, took stock of developments, reviewed the WSIS Outcomes (2003 and 2005) related to the WSIS Action Lines, and agreed a vision beyond 2015. The process took into account the decisions of the 68th Session of the UN General Assembly. Stakeholders were involved in the preparation of the WSIS+10 HLE outcome documents. The Open Consultation process – facilitated through the WSIS+10 Multistakeholder Preparatory Platform (WSIS+10 MPP) – involved several phases. The outcome documents of the HLE underscored the role of ICTs in achieving the objectives of the post-2015 sustainable development agenda. The new sustainable development goals (SDG), which will build on the millennium development goals (expiring in 2015), will be agreed upon in September 2015. The SDG process is likely to have an impact on the outcomes of the WSIS+10 review.

The WSIS+10 HLE was an extended version of the WSIS Forum event, which took place 9-13 June 2014. The Forum Track gathered WSIS stakeholders for discussions on the WSIS process including the Overall Review of the Implementation of the WSIS Outcomes (WSIS+10). The Forum Track Outcome Document summarises the outcomes of Forum Track events organised during the WSIS+10 HLE, including interactive country workshops, and thematic workshops. Every year, the WSIS Forum is co-organised by the ITU, UNESCO, UNCTAD and UNDP.

In 2015, the first draft of UNESCO's Internet Study on Keystones to foster inclusive Knowledge Societies was the subject of CONNECTing the Dots, a UNESCO conference which took place in Paris on 3-4 March 2015. The findings and recommendations of the Internet Study will contribute to the WSIS+10 Review process and the post-2015 international development agenda. The WSIS Forum – the annual meeting of stakeholders that coordinates the implementation of the WSIS outcomes and takes stock of the implementation process – took place on 25-29 May 2015.

The WSIS outcome documents and the UN General Assembly Resolution 60/252 resolved to conduct an overall review of the implementation of the Summit Outcomes in 2015. The process will culminate with an intergovernmental meeting at the United Nations in New York on 15-16 December 2015, which will decide – among other aspects – on the renewal mandate of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF), and the next steps in the enhanced cooperation process. The modalities were outlined in a UN General Assembly Resolution (68/302) adopted in July 2014, according to which, 'the overall review will be concluded by a two-day high-level meeting of the UN General Assembly, to be preceded by an intergovernmental preparatory process', and 'during the preparatory process for the high-level meeting, the President of the General Assembly will organise informal interactive consultations with all relevant stakeholders'. The intergovernment preparatory process started officially in June with the appointment of the two co-facilitators to lead the negotiation process.

Actors

Internet Governance Forum: The purpose of the IGF is to support the United Nations Secretary-General in carrying out the mandate from the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) with regard to convening a new forum for multi-stakeholder policy dialogue – the IGF. Read more

International Telecommunication Union: The ITU is the United Nations specialised agency for information and communication technologies – ICTs. The ITU is committed to connecting all the world's people – wherever they live and whatever their means. Through its work, the ITU seeks to protect and support everyone's fundamental right to communicate. Read more

UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development: Since 2006, the CSTD has been mandated by the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) to serve as the focal point in the system-wide follow-up to the WSIS outcomes and advise the Council thereon, including through the elaboration of recommendations to the Council aimed at furthering the implementation of the summit outcomes. Read more

United Nations Development Programme: Since 1966, the UNDP partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crisis, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. Read more

United Nations Conference on Trade and Development: UNCTAD, which is governed by its 194 member states, is the UN body responsible for dealing with development issues, particularly international trade – the main driver of development. UNCTAD's ICT-related work includes research in science, technology (including ICT) and innovation for development, and helping developing countries design and implement technology and innovation policies for economic growth and sustainable development. Read more

United Nations Economic, Scientific and Cultural Organisation: UNESCO was created in 1945 in order to respond to the firm belief of nations, forged by two World Wars in less than a generation, that political and economic agreements are not enough to build a lasting peace. Read more

Key Instruments

UN Resolutions

Review documents

Other resources

The Geneva Internet Platform is an initiative of the Swiss authorities

 

Members of the Steering Committee are FDFA, OFCOM, Canton of Geneva, ETH-Zürich, and the University of Geneva

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