The 12th annual meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) is taking place on 18-21 December 2017, in Geneva, Switzerland, with the overarching theme 'Shaping your digital future'. As in previous years, the IGF meeting will include a large number of workshops, open forums, dynamic coalition meetings, and other events that will give participants the opportunity to engage in open discussions on various Internet governance issues. We will be reporting from most workshops; session reports will be available further down on this page. IGF Daily newsletters, a final report, data analysis, illustrations, and other content will be available on this page. View also our full programme of activities.
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The Geneva Internet Platform is providing just-in-time reporting from sessions.
Session reports will be available below: Click on the session title to read the report.
The use of prefixes in digital policy discussions is more than the discussions are going, and how certain issues are framed - and in some cases nuanced. DiploFoundation has been analysing the language of digital policy since WSIS 2005.
The prefix digital is by far the leader, based on the analysis of 33 transcripts from Day 1 of the IGF 2017. The popularity of digital is triggered by the growing use of the concept of the digitalisation of society. One interesting trend from Day 1 is the frequent use of digital governance instead of Internet governance.
While leading in overall use, digital has lost its predominance in economic issues to the pre x ‘e-’. During the last few years, digital was used more than ‘e-’ as dominant pre x for economic issues, probably due to the influence of the introduction of the EU Digital Single Market in the Internet governance debate. The return to the use of ‘e’ (electronic) for economic and trade matters was supported by the use of the term e-commerce in the preparatory process for the WTO Ministerial meeting in Buenos Aires.
The relatively low frequency of the prefix cyber during Day 1 could be explained by the low number of sessions on cyber-security. It’s use is likely to increase today (Day 2) as one of the main sessions and several other workshops focus on cybersecurity.
The Prefix Monitor for the second day of the IGF, based on our analysis of close to 60 transcripts, confirmed two trends and revealed a new one.
On Monday we observed that the popularity of the prefix digital was triggered by the growing use of the concept of digitalisation of society. The prefix was also widely used to refer to digital governance rather than Internet governance. The tendency to use digital governance continued during the second day of the IGF.
Retaining its popularity, the prefix cyber increased significantly in use on Day 2. This was due to the number of cyber-security discussions yesterday, starting from a main session on global cooperation on cybersecurity, to more specific workshops. Although both the prefixes digital and e- had a lower frequency, a closer look at the transcripts confirms this year’s trend for e- to prevail over digital in economic issues.
After three days of discussions, the prefixes digital and cyber have finally attained balance. Gradually, the discussion evolved from an initial wider coverage of digitalisation of society on the first day, to a more focused discussion on security, typically associated with the prefix cyber.
The prefix online, used predominantly in human rights and in discussions about content or fake news, declined on the third day. The Prefix Monitor in the forthcoming final report will provide an overall analysis of trends in the use of prefixes with regard to topics and discussions at the IGF.
The 12th annual meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) is taking place on 18-21 December 2017, in Geneva, Switzerland, under the overarching theme 'Shaping your digital future'.
As in previous years, the IGF meeting will include a large number of workshops, open forums, dynamic coalition meetings, and other events that will give participants the opportunity to engage in open discussions on various Internet governance issues. Several main sessions will also be part of the programme, on topics that will be decided by the Multistakeholder Advisory Group, in consultation with the broader IGF community. The outputs of the IGF 2017 intersessional activities will also be discussed at the meeting. In addition, national and regional IGF initiatives will share experiences and discuss about their specificities, challenges, and plans for the future.
In December 2015, the United Nations General Assembly endorsed the remarkable progress of the Internet and information and communication technologies at the overall review of the outcomes of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS+10). As part of the outcome of WSIS+10, the General Assembly acknowledged the role of the IGF as a multistakeholder platform for discussion of Internet governance issues and decided to extend for another 10 years the existing mandate of the IGF. IGF work moving forward will also support the global effort to achieve the SDGs, many of which relate in one way or another to the Internet and information and communication technologies.