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Youth IGF to propose the process for the global recognition of recommendations on digital by young people

Youth IGF
Youth IGF to propose the process for the global recognition of recommendations on digital by young people
By Youth IGF • Issue #10 • View online

UN & EU : committed to strengthening youth voices.
Young people can impact policies. Credit: Photo by fauxels on Pexels.
Young people can impact policies. Credit: Photo by fauxels on Pexels.
The importance of youth participation in Internet Governance has been recognised by the international community. The IGF 2021 in Katowice brought serious attention to youth engagement and served as a platform for youngsters to make their voices heard at the highest level. An Open Forum organized by the Youth IGF together with the EU Delegation to the IGF was an opportunity for Youth IGF leaders from all over the world to discuss how exactly youth can influence the choice of internet policies.
Vint Cerf speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
Vint Cerf speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
The internet creates a lot of opportunities for young users, but they also face some challenges and threats online, some related to cybersecurity, privacy, and misinformation. This point was underlined by Vint Cerf, the Father of the internet, a Vice President and Chief Internet Evangelist at Google, in his message to the Youth IGF. Young people have to be ready to address the risks associated with the online environment.
“‎That will fall to some of you, to develop new technologies and to adopt new policies to create a safer environment for everyone,” he said. “You will be responsible for making the internet better”.
Review the Youth IGF & EU Delegation event at the UN IGF. (click to watch the video)
Review the Youth IGF & EU Delegation event at the UN IGF. (click to watch the video)
Based on the outcomes of the Youth IGF Battles, debates between young people on eight topical digital cooperation issues, youth leaders presented a set of recommendations to decision makers.
Levy Syanseke from Zambia called for broader youth participation in the MAG IGF (the body that advises the UN SG on the IGF) and the IGF Multi-Stakeholder High-Level Body, as well as the creation of permanent consultation channels between the MAG IGF, the Youth IGF and other globally recognised youth groups.
Levy Syanseke and Razoana Moslam speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
Levy Syanseke and Razoana Moslam speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
A Youth IGF Partner from Australia, Razoana Moslam, was advocating for the promotion of dialogue between the Office of the UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Technology, the Secretary-General’s High-Level Panel on Digital Cooperation and youth groups working on Internet Governance to ensure cohesion between them on internet-related issues and policies.
Yulia Tikhonova speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
Yulia Tikhonova speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
Youth IGF leaders were working on the preparation of a set of recommendations for decision-makers covering issues such as 5G, green IT, Artificial Intelligence, and misinformation. Yulia Tikhonova, a Youth IGF Partner from Russia, called for the development of the process for the global recognition of recommendations and innovative ideas by young people. With the help of UN bodies such as the Office of the UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on technology, these can be communicated to policymakers and be transformed into fully-fledged solutions.
Yu Ping Chan speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
Yu Ping Chan speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
Commenting on young people’s recommendations for action, Yu Ping Chan, a Senior Programme Officer at the Office of the UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Technology, stressed that the office is committed to strengthening youth voices. The office is ready to communicate ideas presented by young leaders to policymakers and ensure they are taken into consideration. To increase the representation of young people in the discussions related to internet policies, she invited young people to become part of Global Digital Compact, a multi-stakeholder understanding that will be established by the UN Secretary-General and involve both the public and private sector, as well as civil society.
Pearse O'Donohue speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
Pearse O'Donohue speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
Speaking about the outcomes of the Youth IGF Battles and the ideas conveyed by the young, Pearse O'Donohue, Director for the Future Networks Directorate of DG CONNECT at the European Commission, supported the call for youth participation in consultations and the decision-making process linked to Internet Governance.
“We have to ensure that there’s recognition and ownership of the ideas, that they can be implemented”, he said.
Giovanni Seppia speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
Giovanni Seppia speaking at IGF 2021 Open Forum EU Delegation to IGF & Youth IGF
Another recommendation by young people was related to the formation of youth consultation committees within the corporate governance structures of the organisations involved in Internet Governance. The .EU Youth Committee could serve as an example in this regard.
“It’s an experience that I would certainly recommend to other registries”, said Giovanni Seppia, External Relations Manager of EURid, about the creation of the Committee. “In the end we should always think about the next generation of internet users”.
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