Resolution 73 of the ITU Plenipotentiary Conference

Minneapolis, 1998

World Summit on the Information Society

The Plenipotentiary Conference of the International Telecommunication Union (Minneapolis, 1998),


  1. the provisions of the Constitution and the Convention of the International Telecommunication Union concerning the role of the Union with regard to policies and strategies;
  2. the resolutions adopted by this conference concerning strategic issues in the telecommunication sector,


that the Union is required to fulfil its tasks in an environment where telecommunications are playing an increasingly decisive and driving role at the political, economic, social and cultural levels,


  1. that ITU is the organization best able to seek appropriate ways to provide for development of the telecommunication sector geared to economic, social and cultural development;
  2. the complementarity between the work of the Union and the activities of other international and regional organizations;
  3. the interpenetration between issues of telecommunication development and those of economic, social and cultural development, as well as the impact of such interpenetration on social structures in all Member States,


  1. of the fact that the globalization of telecommunications must take account of a harmonious evolution in policies, regulations, networks and services in all Member States;
  2. of the emergence of the concept of the information society in which telecommuni­cations play a central role,

taking into account

  1. the results of the World Telecommunication Standardization Conference (Geneva, 1996), the World Radiocommunication Conference (Geneva, 1997) and the World Telecom­munication Development Conference (Valletta, 1998);
  2. the role and results of the world telecommunication policy forums held,

resolves to instruct the Secretary-General

  1. to place the question of holding a world summit on the information society on the agenda of the United Nations Administrative Committee on Coordination, with a view to meeting the necessary conditions for holding such a summit before the next plenipotentiary conference;
  2. to report to the Council on the results of this consultation and to evaluate the financial burden that might result from the Union’s contribution to holding a world summit on the information society,

instructs the Council

in the light of the results of this consultation:

  1. to consider and decide on the Union’s contribution to the holding of a world summit on the information society, with a view to:
    • establishing an overall framework identifying, with the contribution of all partners, a joint and harmonized understanding of the information society;
    • drawing up a strategic plan of action for concerted development of the information society by defining an agenda covering the objectives to be achieved and the resources to be mobilized;
    • identifying the roles of the various partners to ensure smooth coordination of the establishment in practice of the information society in all Member States;
  2. to ask the Secretary-General to coordinate with other international organizations and with the various partners concerned (Member States, Sector Members, etc.), with a view to holding a world summit on the information society;
  3. to report on the results of the world summit on the information society to the next plenipotentiary conference.