Tag Archives: conference

Call for papers for the annual GigaNet symposium

It is that time of the year again when GigaNet is soliciting proposals for presentations at its 8th annual symposium. This time it will take place in Bali, Indonesia and the main focus of the event will be on cyber-security and state control of the Internet. But don’t get discourage if you are not working in one of these areas, the program committee welcomes submissions on other topics as well.

More details here: http://giga-net.org/page/2013-annual-symposium

Important dates:

  • Abstract submission – July 1
  • Initial decisions – July 29
  • Full papers due – September 30
  • Symposium – October 21

CFP: 7th Annual GigaNet Global Internet Governance Symposium

This year I am going to be again on the program committee of the Global Internet Governance Academic Network (GigaNet). This is a great community for those interested in the international aspects of information policy and the political economy of Internet governance.

GigaNet is interested in receiving abstracts related to Internet Governance themes, especially those containing innovative approaches and/or emerging research areas. We encourage submissions on the following topics:Internet policies on freedom of expression (censorship, kill-switches, filtering, policies that promote free expression, corporate social responsibility)

  • Internet freedom and governance in regions in transition (Arab region, Caucasus etc.)
  • From PIPA to ACTA: National and international agreements on online copyright enforcement
  • Cyber-security, the state and international relations
  • Dataveillance and privacy – the economic perspective
  • Global Internet infrastructure policy (net neutrality, peering and interconnection, ASN assignment, routing infrastructure security, etc.)
  • Innovative methods for Internet Governance research
  • The role of the UN and intergovernmental institutions in global Internet Governance
  • Policy issues surrounding ICANN’s new gTLD program
  • IP addressing: economic and technical challenges of scarcity and governance
  • Internet governance and development

Other proposals on questions of global Internet governance will also be considered.

The deadline for submitting abstracts is May 20th (if accepted, you’ll have to submit the full paper by September 30th).

You can find the full CFP here.

Digital divide and civic engagement

With the dissertation defended I plan on bringing this blog back to life.

I started a post-doc position with the Cornell eRulemaking Initiative (CeRI), based in Cornell Law School. The project runs a very interesting operation called Regulation Room. It offers a platform and, even more importantly, a process for online public participation in the federal government rule-making process (if you don’t know what rule-making is, you are with the majority of people out there and should definitely go to the Regulation Room, because it has all the explanations). I will be working on collaborative drafting of policy input and consensus building around policy issues; aspects that currently are absent from the platform and frankly not sure will be necessarily a standard part of it. I hope to write about this work as I move along.

Yet, even before I started working on my own piece of CeRI research, just learning about the Regulation Room prompted interesting conversations that easily linked to my interest in the digital divide. The result is a paper I co-authored with one of my new colleagues, Rebecca Vernon, which will be presented later this week at the ”New ICTs + New Media = New Democracy? Communications policy and public life in the age of broadband” (CFP) – a workshop organized by the Institute for Information Policy at Penn State University and the New America Foundation.

I am not sure what the policy of the workshop is about publishing the papers, so in the meantime I’ll post the extended abstract. Hope you’ll find the premise interesting. If you are interested in the rest, please email me or just leave a comment.

Between Twitter revolutions and Facebook elections, there is a growing belief that information and communication technologies are changing the way democracy is practiced. But how universal are those effects? In this paper we look into what van Dijk labels “motivational access” in digital divide as an impediment for citizens to actively utilize information and communication technologies for civic engagement. We focus on the Cornell University eRulemaking Initiative as our case and conduct an in-depth investigation into its recent efforts to get the public involved in the Department of Transportation rulemaking process using online tools. Recommendations based on this analysis address both national policy frameworks and agency specific regulations.

The digital divide is viewed as major impediment to information-technology-enhanced democratic processes. But if you build it, will they come? Will making broadband more readily available necessarily increase participation in democratic processes? Will making government information available online motivate citizens to engage with government institutions? Will opening up communication channels necessarily yield productive feedback from people? Are the barriers for meaningful civic participation online primarily technological?

Regulation Room (http://regulationroom.org) is a project of Cornell University eRulemaking Initiative (CeRI). It is an online platform developed to engage the public in the federal agency rulemaking processes. In addition to its technological platform, Regulation Room has developed a set of moderation and outreach techniques to make both the procedures of rulemaking and the content of the rules more accessible to the general public. CeRI works with the Department of Transportation on actual rules the agency is seeking public comment on. As such, it serves as a real-life laboratory to explore uses of technology in democratic processes.

Over the past 15 months, Regulation Room worked on 3 rules that resulted in formal comments submitted to the Department of Transportation. In this paper we unpack what it takes to engage citizens in democratic processes and help them make their participation count. Our analysis suggests that while digital divide defined in terms of physical access and technological literacy may play a role in impeding civic engagement, they may not be the only important factors. In effect, while ensuring that all citizens have broadband access and well-developed technical skills go a long way toward ensuring public participation in democratic governance, it will not result in the desired breadth and depth of participation without further policy changes and investments in new technologies. Practices that evolved around the use of technology on the one hand and the engagement with government processes on the other, play an important role affecting civic online participation.

The paper presents an assortment of lessons and observations from “Regulation Room” and offers policy recommendations that suggest viewing civic online engagement through the lens of socio-technical practice, wherein the technology requirements for citizens to engage effectively in democratic processes are examined in conjunction with the normative assumptions of individuals as they interact with their government through online media.

Footage from the workshop on core Internet values

With a slight delay, I would like to share video footage of the workshop I organized at the last IGF in Vilnius.  This is the same workshop for which I was seeking your input about a month and a half ago.

The full title of the workshop is “Core Internet values and the principles of Internet Governance across generations” and the idea is exactly that – to have a dialogue between Internet pioneers and young Internet activists on the core of what the Internet stands for.

We had a great group of people.  On the one hand, there were young people from different parts of the world.  On the other hand, there were more senior Internet thinkers and practitioners.  Here is the full list of participants (in alphabetical order):

  • Bill Graham, Global Strategic Engagement, the Internet Society (ISOC)
  • ‘Gbenga Sesan, Paradigm New Nigeria
  • Drew Smith, Student at Elon Univeristy and participant in Imagining the Internet project
  • Grace Bomu, Young Kenyan lawyer, secretary of the ICT Consumers Association of Kenya, and cultural activist
  • Laura DeNardis, Yale Information Society Project
  • Marie Casey, Elected female representative at the ITU Youth Forum of future leaders, Geneva, 2009
  • Nii Narku Quaynor, Ghana.com
  • Rafik Dammak, Tokyo University
  • Vinton G. Cerf, vice president and chief Internet evangelist for Google
  • Vladimir Radunovic, Diplo Foundation

Ian Peter, who chaired the last year workshop on Internet Governance, was also supposed to take part in the workshop, but unfortunately he was not able to make it to Vilnius.

I hoped to be able to share a report from the workshop here, but other tasks take priority at the moment and I will be posting the report later.  I do think we had a very interesting and lively discussion, so I thought at this point I will just share the video footage of the event.  If you have a couple of hours to spare, I think you will find this engaging.

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As always, your thoughts and comments are most welcome!

CFP: Third International Workshop on Internet Governance

If you are interested in Internet Governance research, you may find the following call for contributions, issues by GigaNet, relevant.

Third International Workshop on Global Internet Governance: An Interdisciplinary Research Field in Construction

Montreal (QC), Canada – 30-31 May 2010

Organized by GigaNet, in cooperation with The Canadian Communication Association and Media@McGill

Co-sponsored by GigaNet, ACC-CCA, Media@McGill, LIP6/CNRS and UPMC

Preliminary Announcement and Call for Contributions

The Global Internet Governance Academic Network (GigaNet) invites you to participate in its third scholarly workshop to be held in Montreal (QC), Canada, on 30-31 May 2010. This workshop is organized in cooperation with the Canadian Communication Association and Media@McGill, during the Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences (CFHSS) 2010 Congress week in Montreal.

Building on the success of its first two editions, respectively in Paris, France in June 2008 and in Brussels, Belgium in May 2009, the purpose of this third GigaNet workshop is twofold:

The first day will be dedicated to outreach sessions aimed at increasing the interest in the Global Internet Governance field among both various academic disciplines and the civil society at large, including but not limited to NGOs and civil society groups active in related fields. These outreach sessions will include academic tutorials on Global Internet Governance as well as information and discussion led by experts in the field on current Global Internet Governance debates and their relevance to public policy making.   Detailed information on the outreach sessions’ program will be distributed closer to the event itself.

The second day will feature thematic presentations selected upon submissions made in response to this call for contributions. We invite scholars to present and discuss their work- in-progress in Internet Governance-related research, with the aim to identify emerging research themes and design a research agenda. Rather than featuring academic paper presentations, the workshop aims at providing a survey of current academic activities in the field, in order to share ideas and forge possible collaborations.

Submissions are expected to focus on presenting problematics, research designs, preliminary empirical results and conclusions in the aim of stimulating reflection and discussion amongst the audience. Submissions may address, but are not limited to, the following topics:

involved actors and their interactions; Internet governance institutions and regimes; legal, socio-economical, behavioral and technical regulation means; Internet governance policy issues.

Submissions in view of thematic presentations should be sent by 20 March 2010 to Meryem Marzouki (Meryem.Marzouki@lip6.fr). They should be written in English and include the name, affiliation, e-mail address and short bio of author(s), along with no more than 500 words of research work description. The program committee will notify applicants by 20 April 2010. To encourage knowledge dissemination, relevant submissions will be published on the workshop website. Authors of selected submissions will be invited to present their work in the workshop thematic sessions.

Program Committee:

Laura DeNardis, Yale U., USA; Meryem Marzouki, CNRS & U. Pierre et Marie Curie, France; Milton Mueller, Syracuse U., USA & Delft Technical U., The Netherlands; Claudia Padovani, Padova U., Italy & McGill U., Canada; Jeremy Shtern, Ryerson U., Canada.

Local Organizing Committee:

Juliana Dalley, McGill U., Canada; Becky Lentz, McGill U., Canada; Daniel Paré, U. of Ottawa, Canada; Claire Roberge, McGill U., Canada.

There is no registration fee for this event. A registration form will be circulated with the program.

Workshop website: http://giga-net.org/page/2010-international-workshop

GigaNet: giga-net.org – ACC-CCA: www.acc-cca.ca – Media@McGill: media.mcgill.ca

To receive further workshop updates, and other GigaNet news, please subscribe to the information dissemination mailing list: info-giganet (http://www-rp.lip6.fr/wws/info/info-giganet)