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Global symposium for regulators
Brahima Sanou
photo credit: ITU/V.Martin
Brahima Sanou
Director of the ITU Telecommunication Development Bureau

The 11th edition of the Global Symposium for Regulators (GSR) is being hosted by the Colombian authorities in Armenia City, Colombia, on 21–23 September 2011. It is my first GSR as Director of the ITU Telecommunication Development Bureau, and I am delighted to see such great interest in this event at the highest level of government, with the Presidential segment on “Broadband for all and the future of telecommunications and information and communication technologies.” The large attendance for the 4th Global Industry Leaders’ Forum, preceding the Symposium on 20 September, is equally gratifying.

Both events are organized by ITU, in collaboration with the Ministry of Information and Communication Technologies and the Communications Regulatory Commission of Colombia. In both events, under the theme “Smart regulation for a broadband world”, participants will examine measures that regulators can take to achieve broadband for all, foster innovation, and address the complexities and challenges of the broadband ecosystem.

GSR has a full agenda focusing on m-banking services and the role of regulators; wireless broadband spectrum pricing; satellite regulation; open access regulation; setting national broadband policies, strategies and plans; financing universal access/ service; e-waste and recycling and the role of regulators; protecting the rights of all stakeholders in the digital ecosystem; and regional initiatives to foster broadband connectivity. We are pleased to announce that in order to foster interactivity and networking among GSR participants we are providing for the first time an online networking platform.

The many contributions received for this event have been coordinated by Cristhian Lizcano Ortíz, Executive Director of the Communications Regulatory Commission of Colombia. Discussion papers too have been written on these agenda topics. Some of the papers are highlighted in this edition of ITU News. Others, covering the important topics of regulation of global broadband satellite communications, strategies for financing universal broadband access, and who is responsible for e-waste, as well as a report exploring the economic valuation and social value of spectrum, will be covered in future issues of ITU News.

To ensure that all citizens can reap the benefits of living in a broadband world, policy-makers and regulators need to foster affordable access and spur growth. I believe that this is a unique opportunity for regulators to come together to further advance the commitments of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), the Millennium Development Goals, and the decisions of the World Telecommunication Development Conference, held in Hyderabad, India, in May–June 2010.


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