PROPOSED THEMES FOR THE SUMMIT AND POSSIBLE OUTCOMES
find below some preliminary Swiss comments with regard to the document
WSIS/COM04/PCI/03. The Swiss Authorities are still engaged in internal
consultations and will forward more substantive comments in due time.
attaches some importance to the following points:
In order to mobilise
public interest it will be important to get a clear and simple message
across. There is therefore need for a clear and simple concept with a view
to mobilising stakeholders and other international organisations.
We also wonder whether
it would be possible to organise the thematic structure in the form of a
grid that would allow for regional input as well as for specific
stakeholder input. This could take the form of a subdivision of the
overall themes according to the interests of different regional and
following comments relate to the above mentioned document:
We hold the view that the Summit should be broad and comprehensive
in its scope (as suggested in Paragraph 5).
The relationship between "themes" (Paragraph 3) and
"key issues" (Paragraph 7) seems to us neither clear nor
convincing. We would like to suggest limiting ourselves, for the time
being, to a structure with three main themes. A sub-division may well
impose itself once we have more conceptual clarity with regard to the
In principle we could go along with a proposed three-tier
structure, as contained in Paragraph 7 (Vision / Access / Applications).
However, in our opinion the terms "Access"
and "Applications" fail to reflect the official title of the
summit, i.e. "Information Society". They are more technological
in nature and relate to ICT rather than to the concept of an Information
We would prefer to articulate the structure according to the
following dimensions of the theme Information Society:
A first dimension under the heading objectives
could address questions such as the following: What kind of information
society do we want? What are the more specific objectives that are
necessary to help bridge the digital divide? Possible objectives are inter alia access for all, cultural diversity, sustainable
development, freedom of information, regulatory framework and enabling
environment, rule of law and security. We would expect the Declaration of
Principles to fall under this heading.
A second dimension, instruments,
could deal with the applications best suited to overcome the problems,
how to make best use of the opportunities and to reach the
objectives. What is the value-added of ICT compared to other instruments?
Under this heading we would like to cover, inter
alia, education, health,
telecommunications, media, knowledge management, e-commerce and
A third dimension under the heading stakeholders
could address questions such
as: Who needs what and who does what? What is the future role of
Governments and what is the right distribution of tasks between
Governments, the private sector, civil society, international
organisations and other stakeholders? Under this heading we would also
like to discuss the implementation of the Plan of Action.
The structural link between the WSIS and the Millenium Declaration,
as contained in Section C and Annex 2,
is not necessarily conducive to achieving concrete results. The
question as to a possible contribution of ICT to the realisation of the
objectives set out in the Millenium Declaration is in our view just one of
the many aspects that should be looked into at the Summit. However, it
should not determine the structure of debate and outcome.
Finally, some drafting suggestions:
Paragraph 6: delete "PrepCom needs to determine what is the
problem that the Summit is trying to resolve." (It would give the
wrong signal if we don't know yet what the Summit is supposed to be
Paragraph 10: delete "It is likely that the second phase will
focus on the specific needs of developing countries." (We feel
strongly that already the first phase of the Summit in 2003 needs to
address the specific needs of developing countries.)