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 The Summit: Preparatory process

The Summit in Geneva (10 to 12 December 2003) was the outcome of a wide variety of inputs, including previous meetings, existing Action Plans of the various partners involved and inputs from the Preparatory Committees of the Summit (PrepComs) *(see Chart below). Regional, conferences as well as thematic and expert meetings were organized to consider specific subjects. Regional conferences were organized to address specific concerns, needs and priorities of the various regions. Attending the PrepComs were government representatives, representatives of the UN and its specialized agencies, the private sector, civil society and NGOs. 

Key dates
Preparatory Committee Meetings
PrepCom 1 – Geneva 1-5 July 2002
PrepCom 2 – Geneva 17-28 February 2003
PrepCom 3 – 15-26 September 2003; 10-14 November 2003; 5-9 December 2003.

Regional Conferences
Africa – Bamako 28-30 May 2002
Europe – Bucharest 7-9 November 2002
Asia Pacific – Tokyo 13-15 January 2003 
Latin America & Caribbean – Bávaro, Dominican Republic, 29-31 January 2003
Western Asia – Beirut, Lebanon, 4-6 February 2003

Preparatory Committee meetings and Regional Conferences will also be held in the run up to WSIS Tunis that will take place in November 2005.

The Facilitating Mechanisms

High-Level Summit Organizing Committee
A High-Level Summit Organizing Committee (HLSOC) was established under the patronage of UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and with the Chairman of the United Nations System Chief Executive Board for Coordination (CEB formally ACC).

The HLSOC is composed of a Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General and Executive Heads of the following UN specialized agencies: FAO, IAEA, ICAO, ILO, IMO, ITU, UNCTAD, UNDP, UNEP, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO. It comprises also the Director General of WTO, the Executive Director of UNITAR, Executive Secretaries of the UN Regional Economic Commissions and the President of the World Bank. The Secretary-General of the International Telecommunication Union serves as Chairman of the HLSOC.

The purpose of HLSOC is to coordinate the efforts of the United Nations family in the preparation, organization and holding of WSIS. All the members of the HLSOC have engaged to provide specific information about their work that will help develop the Summit themes. The Committee reports directly to the CEB and oversees the work of the Executive Secretariat.

Executive Secretariat
The Executive Secretariat of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS/ES) was established under the authority of the HLSOC to assist in the preparation of the Summit. It is based at the ITU headquarters in Geneva.

Host countries Executive Secretariats 
Switzerland and Tunisia have created working secretariats under the direction of their respective Ambassadors to the World Summit.




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Updated : 2004-11-29