The scale, spread and speed of change brought about by digital technology is unprecedented, and the current means and levels of international cooperation are unequal to the challenge. Digital technologies make a significant contribution to the realisation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and cut uniquely across international boundaries, policy silos and professional domains. Cooperation across domains and across borders is therefore critical to realizing the full social and economic potential of digital technologies, mitigating the risks they pose, and curtailing any unintended consequences.
The High-level Panel on Digital Cooperation was convened by the UN Secretary-General to advance proposals to strengthen cooperation in the digital space among Governments, the private sector, civil society, international organizations, technical and academic communities and other relevant stakeholders.
The Panel is expected to raise awareness about the transformative impact of digital technologies across society and the economy, and contribute to the broader public debate on how to ensure a safe and inclusive digital future for all, taking into account relevant human rights norms.
- Melinda Gates (USA), Co-Chair of The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
- Jack Ma (China), Executive Chairman, Alibaba Group
- Mohammed Al Gergawi (UAE), Minister of Cabinet Affairs and the Future, UAE
- Yuichiro Anzai (Japan), Senior Advisor and Director of Center for Science Information Analysis, Japan Society for the Promotion of Science
- Nikolai Astrup (Norway), Minister of International Development, Norway
- Vinton Cerf (USA), Vice President and Chief Internet Evangelist, Google
- Fadi Chehadé (USA), Partner at ABRY Partners
- Isabel Guerrero Pulgar (Chile), Director, IMAGO Global Grassroots and Lecturer, Harvard Kennedy School
- Marina Kaljurand (Estonia), Chair of the Global Commission on the Stability of Cyberspace
- Bogolo Kenewendo (Botswana), Minister of Investment, Trade and Industry, Botswana
- Akaliza Keza Ntwari (Rwanda), ICT advocate and entrepreneur
- Marina Kolesnik (Russian Federation), senior executive, entrepreneur and WEF Young Global Leader
- Doris Leuthard (Switzerland), Head of the Federal Department of the Environment, Transport, Energy and Communications, Switzerland
- Cathy Mulligan (United Kingdom), Co-Director of Imperial College Centre for Cryptocurrency
- Edson Prestes (Brazil), Professor, Institute of Informatics, Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul
- Kira Radinsky (Israel), Director of Data Science, eBay
- Nanjira Sambuli (Kenya), Digital Equality Advocacy Manager, World Wide Web Foundation
- Sophie Soowon Eom (Republic of Korea), Founder of Adriel AI and Solidware
- Dhananjayan Sriskandarajah (Australia), Secretary General, CIVICUS
- Jean Tirole (France), Chairman of the Toulouse School of Economics and the Institute for Advanced Study in Toulouse
The deliberations of the Panel will be supported by a small secretariat, co-led by:
- Amandeep Singh Gill (India), Executive Director, Secretariat of the High-level Panel on Digital Cooperation (ex officio)
- Jovan Kurbalija, (Serbia), Executive Director, Secretariat of the High-level Panel on Digital Cooperation (ex officio)
All panel members serve in their personal capacity, not as representatives of their respective institutions.
The Panel will hold two in-person meetings in September 2018 and January 2019, and will meet virtually as required.
The Panel will also seek to gather the views and proposals of Member States, relevant industries, civil society and academia worldwide through a careful consultation process. It will draw expertise from expert communities across the globe through engagement at existing events, conferences and forums as well as call for contributions from the general public through virtual hubs and online participation platforms. Two regional consultations will be organized in Asia and in Africa.
The Panel will complete its deliberations and submit its final report, including actionable recommendations, within a nine-month period. The report will map trends in digital technologies, identify gaps and opportunities, and outline proposals for strengthening international cooperation in the digital space.
Why was the Panel established?
Current means and levels of international cooperation are not commensurate with the scale and rapidity of changes brought about by digital technologies. Digital technologies cut uniquely across international boundaries. Cooperation across sectors and across borders is critical to realizing the full social and economic potential of digital technologies as well as mitigating the risks they could pose.
Why is it called High-level Panel on Digital Cooperation?
The term Digital Cooperation aims to frame discussions on digital issues in a cooperative framework; it also aims to break silos by encouraging thinking and action across domains, and build trust among various stakeholders.
What are the expected outcomes?
The Panel will submit a report that will provide a high-level independent contribution to the broader public debate on digital cooperation frameworks and support Member States in their consultations on these issues.
The report is expected to: 1) raise awareness about the transformative impact of digital technologies across society and the economy, 2) identify policy, research and information gaps as well as ways to improve interdisciplinary action on digital technologies, and 3) present concrete proposals to strengthen cooperation in the digital space in an effective and inclusive manner.
It is expected that the consultation process leading to the report will contribute to stimulating discussion among and between various stakeholder groups on how they can work together to maximize the potential of the digital transformation.
How is this different from other panels, commissions and international forums on similar topics?
The Secretary-General welcomes the increased focus on the implications of digital technologies for our society and our economy through commissions, conferences and other forums. This signifies that the timing is ripe for the digital policy ecosystem to evolve to the next level of maturity.
The work of all these initiatives can and should be mutually reinforcing. Wherever possible, this Panel will work with other initiatives and seek to identify synergies and complementarities.
How is the Panel supported?
The Panel is supported by a small Secretariat funded by donor resources, and based in New York and Geneva.
To provide suggestions or comments, contact the High Level Panel Secretariat at: firstname.lastname@example.org