WSIS Forum 2017

The World Summit on the Information Society Forum (WSIS) 2017 represents the world's largest annual gathering of the ‘ICT for development’ community. The annual WSIS Forum is a global multi-stakeholder platform facilitating the implementation of the WSIS Action Lines for advancing sustainable development. The Forum is co-organized by ITU, UNESCO, UNDP and UNCTAD, in close collaboration with all WSIS Action Line co-/facilitators and other UN organizations (UNDESA, FAO, UNEP, WHO, UN Women, WIPO, WFP, ILO, WMO, ITC, UPU, UNODC, UNICEF and UN Regional Commissions). It provides an opportunity for information exchange, knowledge creation and sharing of best practices, while identifying emerging trends and fostering partnerships, taking into account the evolving Information and Knowledge Societies.

In follow up to the outcomes of the UN General Assembly Overall Review of the Implementation of WSIS Outcomes (Res. A/70/125) and with the adoption of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Res. A/70/1), the WSIS Forum is constantly evolving and strengthening the alignment between the WSIS Action Lines and the Sustainable Development Goals. The WSIS Forum will therefore serve as a key forum for discussing the role of ICTs as a means of implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and targets, with due regard to the global mechanism for follow-up and review of the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (UNGA Resolution A/70/1).

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The World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) is a unique two-phase United Nations (UN) summit that was initiated in order to create an evolving multi- stakeholder platform aimed at addressing the issues raised by information and communication technologies (ICTs) through a structured and inclusive approach at the national, regional and international levels. The goal of WSIS is to achieve a common vision, desire and commitment to build a people-centric, inclusive and development-oriented Information Society where everyone can create, access, utilize and share information. The UN General Assembly Resolution 56/183 (21 December 2001) endorsed the holding of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) in two phases. The first phase took place in Geneva from 10 to 12 December 2003 and the second phase took place in Tunis, from 16 to 18 November 2005. In 2003, the number of participants was 11,000 representing 175 countries and in 2005 the number of participants was more than 19,000 representing 174 countries. Since then, a cluster of WSIS-related events was held on an annual basis. In 2009, the cluster of WSIS-related events was re-branded as WSIS Forum.

We will strengthen the WSIS Forum as a key platform for discussing the role of ICTs as a means of implementation of the SDGs and targets.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon

Preparatory Process

The WSIS Forum is the only event of its kind where the programme is completely crowdsourced. Therefore, as organizers, ITU, UNESCO, UNCTAD and UNDP, are pleased to announce the Open Consultation Process on thematic aspects and innovations on the format of the WSIS Forum 2017.

The process aims at ensuring a participatory and inclusive spirit of the Forum, scheduled to be held from 12-16 June 2017 at ITU in Geneva. This process actively engages governments, civil society, the private sector, academia, the technical community and intergovernmental organizations in the preparatory process to ensure broad ownership and further improvements of the Forum.The Open Consultation Process will include a collection of inputs from regional and national WSIS related events. The physical meetings of the Open Consultation Process will benefit from remote participation.

The Open Consultation Process for the WSIS Forum 2017 is structured in six phases as follows:

Invitation to contribute to the Open Consultation Process

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Call for Major Stakeholder Coordination Mechanisms following the WSIS Process to Identify and Nominate High-Level Track Facilitators (HLTF) for the WSIS Forum 2017.
wsis-info@itu.int —Deadline 1 February 2017 |  More info

Open Consultation Process Phases

Phase IV

Submissions deadline

Phase V

Final review meeting

Phase VI

Final brief


Phase I: Opening of the open consultations

Phase II: First physical meeting

The first physical meeting of the Open Consultation Process was held on Wednesday 12 October 2016, 16:00–18:00 in Room H at the ITU Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland.

Phase III: Second physical meeting

The second physical meeting of the Open Consultation Process will be held on Tuesday 14 February 2017, 15:00–18:00 in Room A at the ITU Headquarters, Geneva, Switzerland.


Stocktaking: Call for Update and New Entries

The WSIS Stocktaking database, currently with 8.000 plus entries and a growing community of 200.000 stakeholders, is a unique global tool for collecting information and regular reporting on ICT related initiatives and projects, carried out by governments, international organizations, the business sector, civil society, academia and other entities, in the context of 11 WSIS Action Lines.

In support of the WSIS Implementation and Follow-up, all WSIS Stakeholders are invited to update and submit new entries online. Submitted activities will be reflected in the WSIS Stocktaking Report 2017, which will be released at the WSIS Forum 2017.

Call for New Entries

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WSIS Prizes 2017

WSIS Prizes is an international contest developed in response to requests from WSIS stakeholders to create an effective mechanism to evaluate and recognize individuals, governments, civil society, local, regional and international agencies, research institutions and private sector companies for outstanding success in implementing development-oriented strategies that leverage the power of ICTs. The WSIS Prizes contest is an integral part of the WSIS stocktaking process. The contest was held for the first time in 2012, and rapidly gained attention and popularity within the ICT for Development (ICT4D) community.

All WSIS Stakeholders are encouraged to submit their project descriptions to the WSIS Prizes contest.

Call for Submissions

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WSIS Forum 2016 in numbers

1800+ Onsite Participants
800+ Remote Participants
85+ Ministers & Deputies
140+ Countries Represented
160+ Sessions
40+ Exhibitors

Outcomes

The outcomes of the WSIS Forum 2016 were presented on the last day, 6th of May.