The 10th World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) Forum has ended with much focus on how to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) leveraging digital tools.
Ministerial Round Table at 10th World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) Forum, 8-12 April 2019, emphasized the importance of the WSIS Action Lines – on which many national digital agendas were built – as a key United Nations framework for progress on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Round Table participants also highlighted the need for sharing of scarce resources as well as strengthening collaboration to build confidence and security in the use of technology for good and digital skills so more people can benefit.
For 10 years, the WSIS Forum has been providing an open and inclusive space for some of the most leading voices in government, the private sector, academia, and civil society to foster partnerships, showcase innovation, share knowledge and information, enhance networks, and share good practices to advance the SDGs through information and communication technologies.
“Ten years on, we are joined by more than 30 agencies of our extended United Nations family. People’s lives have been transformed. With the emergence of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, 5G and other new technologies, the next decade will continue to bring enormous opportunities,” said Houlin Zhao, ITU Secretary-General.
The outcomes of the WSIS Forum contribute to global processes:
United Nations regional commissions committed to strengthen regional WSIS action through multi-stakeholder platforms and a series of face-to-face meetings. It is anticipated that WSIS Action Lines will be included in the UN Regional Coordination Mechanism and will become one of the pillars of the regional SDG Forums. The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific (UNESCAP) was appointed as the Chair of the WSIS UN Regional Commission.
The United Nations Group on the Information Society (UNGIS) reiterated its commitment to the implementation of the WSIS Action Lines towards the SDGs, with a joint statement to be released during the United Nations High-Level Political Forum 2019, to be co-chaired by ITU and the United Nations Development Programme. UNESCAP was appointed as the Vice-Chair representing the UN regional commissions.
This year’s more than 300 sessions, fully crowdsourced following an open consultation process, highlighted the contributions of tech in SDG priority areas such as accessibility, education, employment, environment, gender empowerment, health, hunger, tech infrastructure and innovation and youth…