The following are the outputs of the real-time captioning taken during an IGF virtual call. Although it is largely accurate, in some cases it may be incomplete or inaccurate due to inaudible passages or transcription errors. It is posted as an aid, but should not be treated as an authoritative record.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Hello, everyone. Good morning, afternoon, or evening. We'll get started in just a minute or two, just waiting for a few more people to join.
>> Good morning.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Okay. Good morning, everyone, good afternoon, good evening. Let's get started, and if -- Eleonora is driving the WebEx and filling in for Luis today, who's on holiday, so if we could use the hand-up notice in the WebEx chat room, that would facilitate everything, so in other words, type in hand-up or queue, please, and we'll slot you into the queue.
The first order of business is approval of the agenda, which was sent out a couple of days ago, and kind of largely, it was agreed at the last MAG meeting. There are just a few items. One is, of course, adoption of the agenda here, miscellaneous updates by the Secretariat or Chair and by the host country, if there are any, and then review of open items, specifically focused on, you know, the final workshop list and the thematic or main session process and preparations, and, of course, any other items people would desire.
Are there any requests for AOB? And hearing none, we should be able to catch anything we need to catch under the fourth item, I believe.
So we will call the agenda approved, and let me just quickly check and make sure that we are recording it. Okay. I see we are recording it. And we have one call-in user that I believe is Veni, but maybe, Veni, you could just confirm that.
>> VENI MARKOVSKI: Yes, it's me.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: It is you. Okay. Good. And we also have Chengetai here on the call with us, and I think he's here as a resource or if needed, and appreciate -- appreciate his being here.
So let me start, then, with miscellaneous updates by the Secretariat or the Chair. Assuming that's Eleonora, one of the key items we wanted to do briefly was sort of update on where we were with respect to the main -- sorry, the workshop selection process. I sent a note out yesterday which basically outlined the process, and, again, as -- as agreed directionally at the last MAG meeting, and Eleonora will walk us through the process the Secretariat followed in a bit more detail, basically following the memo that was sent out yesterday. We'll open it up for questions.
We do have a spreadsheet prepared, and Eleonora and I have been trying to figure out the best way to share that because, of course, all of our lists are public. It's also been pointed out privately that even, of course, the email links that we were sharing last week or two weeks ago during the MAG meeting, of course, are public, and those also had possibly -- unfortunately, I'm not sure -- the comments from the -- some of the merge suggestions and that sort of thing, so I think one of the things we need to do going forward is really figure out what the right level of transparency is and the sort of information that should be shared publicly while the MAG is still deliberating on workshop approval processes. I think there's not much we can do, obviously, with what was shared previously, but if there are any questions or points of confusion, then I would direct them either to the Secretariat, to Eleonora, or to myself.
And I guess one of the questions we have is are people okay at this point sharing the Excel spreadsheet which is basically the one we were working with last year -- last -- the last meeting called the top 68, with some additional notes in it from the Secretariat with respect to, you know, suggested mergers and suggestions that came up during the meeting or on the mail list, and then the second tab for each is a tab -- a clean tab, which shows those that were recommended to be accepted as part of the formal programme.
I don't know if, you know -- we can put the link in the chat room now unless there's any kind of significant concerns with doing that. We have not been able to figure out a different way to do that. I suppose we could collect everybody's email addresses individually and send it out to everybody's individual email list as opposed to the MAG list, which is public. I was told there is no private MAG list in use at the moment.
So just the question before everybody is -- and Eleonora -- well, maybe I should let Eleonora walk through what she did with the process, specifically what's in the spreadsheet, and then we can have a discussion on what's the appropriate way to get it to the MAG. So Eleonora, could you just walk us through the process?
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Sure. Hi, Lynn. Hi, everyone. Sorry, please bear with me while I sort of try to figure out the technical controls in WebEx. So I'm going to try to display the spreadsheet now so everyone understands what I'm talking about. Just give me one moment.
Okay. I hope you can -- you can all see it in front of you now. So --
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Eleonora.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Yes.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Sorry for interrupting.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: No, no. The
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: There's a comment in the chat room that says given we've shared all the previous Excel spreadsheets and discussions and not only were they shared on the mailing list, of course, they were also discussed, streamed, and transcribed, if people are okay, I can put the link in the chat room here to the updated document as well, and maybe that would facilitate your presentation as well as you walk through it.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Yes, it would. It would. I think it's easier for everyone if they're able to open it themselves and see it on their own computers.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: So let me just do a count to see if there are any objections to putting the link here in the chat room. I'm just trying to dig up the -- look in the event it works. One second. I get so many emails. Okay. I've got the okay. So everybody seems to be okay with that, so there's the link.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Okay. Thank you, Lynn. Should I do a quick walk-through?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Yeah. I think you can just maybe walk through kind of the process and then --
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Sure. So I hope everyone can see in front of them the sheet because I can -- sorry, I have a different sort of point of view of the WebEx room, but this is it. It's a little bit complex and unwieldy, so apologies -- apologies for that, but as you mentioned, Lynn, the sheet is divided by themes, as it was during the MAG meeting, and each theme actually has two sheets. One is the list we left off with in the MAG meeting which includes the top 40 plus the additions made by the Secretariat to rebalance that particular theme, and then the second sheet is a clean thematic sheet with the results of the kind of tweaking that the Secretariat has done between the MAG meeting and now, and the various tweaks or actions that we have taken are noted in this -- in this Action column here, and actually, below the list we left off with at the meeting are the notes that the Secretariat had taken in the meeting of the proposed mergers by the French host country and some other additions and proposed mergers that were made in the room in the meeting.
So the focus really in this process was on keeping this overall list as balanced as possible, taking into consideration thematic balance, subthematic balance, and also some concerns over some underrepresentation regionally? And the focus was -- of course, was also on trimming down this list a bit as we sort of wound up with more than the workshops we had intended and particularly oversubscribed in a couple of themes.
So the process to trim down was careful to only affect in all cases the workshops that the Secretariat had added in the rebalancing and not the core group of top 40 submissions, and this was true in all cases except for the couple of themes where we were oversubscribed, namely Digital Inclusion and Technical and Operational topics, which is at the end of the spreadsheet: And the trimming down basically consisted in either mergers or reductions of 90-minute sessions to 60-minute sessions, and the mergers were made based on the comments that MAG members had made in the evaluation forms for suggested mergers, and I believe one MAG member also sent out to the MAG list a list consolidating all of those merger suggestions, so the Secretariat -- we looked at both the comments and that list, and the reductions, wherever they took place, you know, we tried to keep them as rare as possible. They affected the lowest ranked of the -- of the proposals in that theme.
So what we've hoped we've wound up in the end with is a list that has thematic portions that are really as closely aligned as possible to the communities' interests, and, I mean, we believe that that's the case as the top themes here are cybersecurity, human rights, digital inclusion, and development, innovation, and economic issues, and the community clearly said that those were also their -- the themes that they were most interested in, so I think the final list properly reflects that, and it manages to include the suggested mergers -- mergers and additions that were made by the host country and includes also a couple of additions that were made during the MAG meeting for some better regional representation, particularly from the Middle East and Eastern Europe.
So on the whole, we think we have a very balanced list. We have maybe more proposals than we thought we would end up with in the beginning at 71, but because there are actually many more 60-minute workshops than the Secretariat had originally anticipated, we can thankfully fit those all into the programme
I hope that this clarifies what you have in front of you, even though it looks a little bit complicated, and, of course, I'm happy to take any questions.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Eleonora, and thank you for doing such great work. I appreciate it was a really big lift after the meeting, along with all your other activities.
Are there any other comments or questions? I appreciate everybody is just seeing the list now, but as I mentioned, it was the top 68 list we had last week with those mergers that had been suggested, whether by MAG members or others were evaluated and pulled in. In some cases, some of the mergers, in fact, had one workshop that had already been accepted, so there was not a net add. That was true in the case of two of the proposals from the French government and French IGF.
Any -- just giving everybody a minute. I know it is an awful lot to take in, but, again, it's the 68 that we were reviewing during the MAG meeting with the proposals that had specifically been suggested by the MAG members in the room, which were mostly followed up with emails as well. That was Zeina, Wisdom, and Mary and a few other people, Ignacio as well.
Eleonora, there is one question in the chat room.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi, Lynn. Yes, I'm taking some of the questions in the chat itself, but I can answer verbally. I think Sala asked for a list of all the mergers. I mean, if you open the link that Lynn shared, Sala, in the spreadsheet itself, the mergers are clearly indicated, and then I think you --
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: Eleonora.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Yes.
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: Sala talking here. I saw that list, but when were you talking, you said you pulled the mergers from the actual spreadsheets with the top 68, and at the same time, you mentioned that you referred to somebody sharing a list of mergers on the mailing list. I don't recall the list of mergers ever being shared on the mailing list, so if you could point me to whoever sent it, I could pull it from the mailing list because I've just gotten the spreadsheet in the meantime just to go through the rough mergers, but I think to Lynn's point, we go team by team. So who was it sent to the mailing list by?
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Sure. Sorry if that was confusing, Sala and everyone.
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: No, not confusing. (Inaudible) on the mailing list. It's not confusing. We just need to clarify your source great for your merger list, because as you're doing the selection, we want to also be able to review the selection for mergers that you put in here to see and compare to what actually existed before. That's all.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Sure. So, no, there might be confusion because what I said makes it sound like there are two sources for the mergers. In fact, it's a single source. The mergers come from the suggestions that were made in the evaluations by MAG members, and so those are indicated in the spreadsheet in the Merger Suggestion column.
In addition to that, one MAG member, I believe it was Ignacio Estrada kind of took a look at all these merger suggestions and consolidated them all into one list that he then sent to the MAG list, but his own -- his own list is derived from the same place, the merger suggestions that were made during the evaluation.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: And, Eleonora, it's fair to say, I think, that any merger suggestions for the top 40 were not part of that review. The MAG had actually agreed that if a workshop was scored in the top 40 that it was, obviously, a very high quality standing alone and that what we would do would inform the workshop organizers that some MAG members had thought there were some interesting points of, you know, interrelationship with some other number of workshops. We would communicate those workshop numbers to them and simply ask them to review them in case there was something that could sort of enrich their -- their workshop but that we were not suggesting anybody in the top 40 consider specifically a merger.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: That's right. The only -- the only exception are the two themes where we were oversubscribed, in one case heavily oversubscribed, and that was digital inclusion where I -- there are two suggestions for mergers based, again, on comments made by the MAG, even though those submissions are in the -- are in the top 40.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: So there's a request that we go through one by one. Maybe we can -- I think if we go through one or two, we'll make sure everybody understands the process, and then specifically, there was one question on the human rights gender, so maybe if we just go to the cybersecurity tab, the full tab.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Mm-hmm. Okay. Okay. So in the cybersecurity tab, you'll see here there are two suggestions for mergers, and they are on the additions made by the Secretariat, are not the top -- not the core sort of top 40 highly ranked -- highest ranked proposals, and the numbers for the mergers come from the suggestions made -- made in the Merger Suggestion column, which aggregates all the merger suggestions made by the MAG evaluators during evaluation.
So those actions are indicated here, and then if you go to the Clean spreadsheet, the workshops themselves are listed at the bottom with their merged status. So that's an example of, yeah, how it looks in one theme.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: And just to be clear on the cybersecurity, where it says To Be Added: Workshops No. 80, 81, and 83, that was a merge proposal, not --
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: That was a merge proposal, yes.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: -- not three?
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Yes. And then those three, they appear here with a note that they are merged.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: So is everybody clear on kind of the process that was used and how to look at each one of the spreadsheets?
And to answer the question in the chat room, no, I think when we looked at the 60 -- in the MAG meeting we were talking about the top 68. My understanding is that the MAG was happier with the top 68 and some additional scrubbing being done to ensure that we had appropriate diversity and that we were hoping to keep it sort of at 70ish, not any higher than that.
With all the scrubbing that the Secretariat did, we're at 71, but I don't think there was support from the MAG to cull it further to get to 60. So what's in front of everybody now is 71 workshops, and that's what's being proposed to go forward with. Again, it takes the 68 from the MAG meeting, looked at a couple of mergers. Some of those mergers included workshops that were already in the top 68, so we're not a net add. That's true, in particular, in the case of the suggestions by the French government, French IGF, French Civil Society, and the Secretariat pulled a couple out because they were significantly oversubscribed, and those are the ones that Eleonora talked us through.
So I have a hand up. I think, Raquel, were you the first hand up? And then Jutta. And then if I'm missing anybody else in the chat, we'll come back to you immediately after. Raquel, you have the floor.
>> RAQUEL GATTO: Thank you, Lynn, and hi, everyone, and thanks so much, Eleonora, for all the hard work doing this. I'm keeping to the process. So by regarding now the team that we have in front of us, cybersecurity, so that's one of the concerns I see, and perhaps that the pull-out of the -- some of the French proposals, I'm not sure, but --
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Raquel, you're breaking up a lot. It's not possible to understand you.
>> RAQUEL GATTO: Can you hear me better now? Can you hear me better now? Okay.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: No.
>> RAQUEL GATTO: If you want to follow up, and then I will connect in a minute.
>> LUIS BOBO GARCIA: I can hear you well, okay.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Oh, okay. So the Secretariat can hear Raquel. Apparently it's just me. Let me move to Jutta, and see if that's any better, then we'll come back to Raquel.
>> JUTTA CROLL: Hello, everyone. Can you hear me?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Yes.
>> JUTTA CROLL: I just wanted to refer to the Human Rights spreadsheet, a small question. Do I understand right that only those ones that are green colored and in Column A to be added are in and everything else under that line is not going to be among the 71 workshop proposals?
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi. I don't know if, Lynn, you would like me to answer.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Yes, please.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Sure. So that's right. Given the number of proposals we've already had on that theme, there was really not much room for addition. There was -- there was one -- one addition made from the French host country suggestions.
>> JUTTA CROLL: Okay. So I just wanted to point out that those two proposals that are under that line, which is the Workshop No. 405 and the Workshop No. 239, we were talking about these proposals during our face-to-face meeting, and both of the workshops are standing alone. They were under -- under the score that we had agreed to for entering proposals into the programme, but merged together, they are -- both would benefit from the -- each from the other area that we had not enough proposals in there.
And finally, I need to point out that among these 13 that we now have under human rights, we don't have any proposal that is related to children's -- to child protection and online child sexual exploitation, so I do really think it's very important that at least we have one of these proposals among the workshops that make it into the programme of the IGF. I do -- personally, I do think that we failed the whole child online protection community in case that we don't have any workshop among the 71 that is related to child online sexual exploitation, just to make that clear. Thank you.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Eleonora, could you respond again? I'm going to have to get on another connection.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Sure.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: My connection is sometimes good and sometimes not.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Were you able to hear Jutta's comments?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: No, not much at all.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Oh, okay. All right. So I guess the audio is particularly poor on Lynn's end. I guess we can move on to maybe another -- another question. I will say that there is a pretty good mix of subthemes in the human rights theme in general, including some child online safety submissions. Maybe they do not refer exactly to some of the content that Jutta was talking about, but I know that there were more questions, so maybe -- Raquel, would you like to come in again?
>> RAQUEL GATTO: Yes. Thank you, Eleonora. In fact, I wrote in the chat already, but I can mention. First of all, thank you very much for your work, Eleonora. It is great to have this spreadsheet in front of us.
My concerns are, for example, looking for the cybersecurity one, I understand, we want to bring, for example, the topic on hate speech, but I'm not comfortable that we bring those that are scored, like 227, like really below the -- not even under the 100 line of scoring and ranking. It's below 200 to 300 scoring, so I would say I don't know exactly the rationale beyond I'm assuming that's to bring the subtheme, but perhaps we could consider the flash sessions and have them in on this case. I would really by a merit and being fair to the others who were really well scored to bring that in in that case. Thank you.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: So, Raquel, it's Lynn. You're still breaking up, but thank you for putting the comment in the chat room, and I'm trying to sort out my connection -- connection here, everyone.
Those three, the 80, 81, 82 or -- I may have the numbers wrong, but those were suggested by the French host country along with the French IGF and Civil Society, and the -- I think what we also said is that any of the workshops that were either accepted conditionally or were sort of significant merger suggestions could be overseen by the group, the working group that was actually going to work on the thematic session to make sure that they were appropriate quality, so I think in the past, certainly the MAG has pulled in workshops that they thought were interesting topic-wise but maybe didn't meet the -- you know, the criteria fully, and work with them to make sure that they did meet the criteria, and I think what's happening here is it's a combination of interesting topics and requests from the host country government, again, French IGF and Civil Society, which historically the Secretariat has had discretion to accept and pull some in, and I think we had that discussion in the MAG meeting as well and, you know, while there were concerns about how much of a precedent it was setting, I think that question was answered by Chengetai's comments at the time and that there was at least significant support, if not a consensus, that we would work to pull in some of the suggestions from those three French groups. I think your comments about the quality is something we need to make sure we're managing appropriately, and I think, you know, a reasonable way to do that would be through the Working Group that was established to suggest a particular them attic session for that particular theme.
>> RAQUEL GATTO: Lynn, I'm just coming back, and thank you for the explanation. Perhaps looking at each of the spreadsheets by theme, we can -- each of the tabs by theme, we can, perhaps, highlight the reasoning on those because perhaps I was assuming wrong, and so I'm making the decision more in that sense. I'm not against pulling for this reason, it's more of -- yeah, you got it, it's the quality. Thank you.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: So, Raquel, sorry, you're breaking up. I haven't had time to troubleshoot in the back. Luis, if -- if you're still on the call, can we actually show the transcript on the bottom of the screen here, then I could at least rely on the transcript?
>> LUIS BOBO GARCIA: Hi, Lynn. Sure. I think (Inaudible)
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Which I can't hear you either, Luis.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi, Lynn. Sorry. Can you hear me?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: I don't know what's wrong here. They're digging up the street outside. I don't know if that has any impact.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Lynn, it's Eleonora. Can you hear me? Okay. So I think to help Lynn, what we're going to do is stop -- we're not going to show this spreadsheet anymore and we will just display the captions for the time being.
>> CONCETTINA CASSA: Sorry, Eleonora, Lynn. Okay. May I ask, with your permission, Eleonora -- because maybe I missed something. Can I ask you if the Excel sheet includes all the top 40 proposals, the ones that was ranked better because they are only the measured ones, the ones you are proposing the measured because I cannot find Proposal 37, it was 37 in the previous file that you have shared in the list.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi, it's Eleonora. Yes, the spreadsheet does, in fact, contain the top 40 ranked that we agreed on during the MAG meeting. It's -- they would be the proposals at the top of each theme and specifically the ones that are not in bold.
>> CONCETTINA CASSA: So sorry. So you are saying that the spreadsheet contains all the top -- the top ranked proposals, this is what you're saying, because I cannot find the proposal that was ranked 37.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: The top 40 are there. Maybe there's a little glitch with the numbers themselves, but they would be the top 40 ranked proposals.
>> CONCETTINA CASSA: There's one that I cannot find, so I need to check again.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: We can take another -- another look at it and see if -- make sure nothing is amiss.
Okay. I see that Lynn is saying that her connection is still not very good, unfortunately, so I don't know if there are still more questions on the workshop list that we shared that in the meantime maybe I can -- I can take. Cast
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: Eleonora.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Yes. Hi, Sala.
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: Sala here. I put a question in the chat, but I also put it on the mailing list. (Inaudible) I'm really grateful for the things that you've done so far. What I would also like from the Secretariat is sharing the raw merger -- the raw list of mergers from the (Inaudible) from all the proposals, the raw unfiltered ones. It will allow us to have a look at the merger list (Inaudible) and also the (Inaudible) multiple suggestions that came from the floor at our last (Inaudible). (Inaudible) would need time to review the (Inaudible). Can you put it in a mailing list, request a mailing list, I want to (Inaudible).
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Okay. Thank you, Sala. I think we were having a little trouble hearing you. You were very faint. I put my audio all the way up to get the gist of what you were saying, but I think others were not able to. I think the essence of your question was can we share the raw list of mergers, and, sure, we can do that. We can share with you and the rest of the MAG the -- the merger suggestions as extracted from the evaluations. We would be happy to do that.
Lynn, can you hear us?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: I can. Yes.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Okay. Great.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Apologies.
Let me cancel this one here. Sorry.
They're digging up the street --
Luis, if you're on, can you kick me out of the WebEx chat room and leave me on the phone with voice.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi, Lynn, it's Eleonora. Yes, you are talking through the mobile phone, and the other account that you have in the -- in the room is muted, so I hope that maybe that minimizes some of the echo.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you. Yes. Okay. Very sorry. Apologies to everybody for the -- for the troubles here with connecting.
Let me just check and see if there are any other comments or questions in the chat room to make sure we didn't miss anybody when we were going back and forth and then try and see where we are. Is there anybody else who's requesting the floor?
>> ZEINA BOU HARB: Hi, Lynn, this is Zeina. Can I raise a question, please? I've been raising my hand since --
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Yes, Zeina, go ahead.
>> ZEINA BOU HARB: Yes. Actually, I want to confirm that -- for example, as I proposed to add one of the workshops that was finally added to the list, I want to confirm if it's my role now to work with the proposal to enhance and improve the initial workshop that was previously not accepted, I mean, in order to improve it and enhance it. This is our role now, the one who pushed for some proposals to work with the organizers in order to improve them?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Yes, that is traditionally what the MAG has done. In fact, in past years we've been slightly more formal about it and kind of appointed mentors to work with any of the workshops that had conditions associated with them, whether that was a merger or a specific improvement, a suggestion. If you could do that, that would be great. I think also there was another thought at the MAG meeting that said, as we are establishing these sort of small Working Groups to work on the thematic, the main session proposals, that they also could take responsibility for those workshops that were accepted conditionally. I think there's --
>> ZEINA BOU HARB: Okay.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: -- there's probably no harm in your working with them and just making sure that once the Working Group is established that they're aware of your efforts and that you, you know, solicit any additional input from them.
>> ZEINA BOU HARB: Yes, sure, sure. I will be glad to help with that, especially that I requested to have it on the list because of the -- the diversity issue, I mean, the region -- lack of presence. I will be happy to help in that.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Okay. Great. Thank you.
>> ZEINA BOU HARB: Thank you.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Jutta, you're the next hand up I see. Jutta, you have the floor.
>> JUTTA CROLL: Thank you, Lynn, for giving me the floor. Can you hear me?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Yes, we can.
>> JUTTA CROLL: Okay. I'm having a look at the list, I wanted to point out that there are some of the -- some of the proposals that have in the Column H where the merger suggestions are in say no merger, but when you look at Column G with comments, you can find that there are proposed mergers among the comments, so I do think it's important to take also these comments into consideration when talking about merging proposals or not. It doesn't -- if it says no in the merger column, it doesn't say that there are no suggestions to merge these proposals, and in some cases, we have it in the comments and not in the merger column. I do think it's important to take this in consideration. Thank you, Lynn.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Jutta. Eleonora, just want to check and see if there's any -- any comments for clarifications.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Sure. Yes, actually, maybe, Jutta, by email, if you wouldn't mind just pointing out exactly where you have seen that so we can take a closer look at it.
>> JUTTA CROLL: Shall I do that by email or now?
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Or in the chat, if you would like, just so we can kind of look at it on the side.
>> JUTTA CROLL: Okay. I'll do that in the chat. Thank you.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: So I think -- I mean, again, at this point in the process, you know, normally the Secretariat goes away following the advice of the MAG and, you know, tries to optimize against all of the criteria and desires of the MAG and, of course, all the appropriate expectations re: diversity. That's what they've done. I think we can move quickly through the other tabs because I know there's a request to --
>> RODRIGO FONSECA: Sorry. Lynn --
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Let me finish, please. We can move through the tabs to see if there are any questions, allow the MAG members to look at it a little more thoroughly, but we need to wrap this up quite quickly so we can inform the proposals before the seriously heavy holiday period, so I think someone else is asking for the floor, and then we'll go to the -- to the next tab quickly, again, just to understand what's been done there, so I'm not quite sure who's asking for the floor.
>> RODRIGO FONSECA: That was me, Lynn, Rodrigo. Sorry with having to interrupt you. I'm having trouble raising my hand, I don't know why. Thank you all for the hard work. Thank you, Eleonora. I'd just like to raise a point on Workshop 393, which we discussed during our Geneva meeting. It was not included, and it was very well ranked, and it brings about jurisdiction issues that were not dealt with within any other workshop. I would just like to know whether we'd have space to bring it in since other -- other workshops that were very less, had lower evaluations were also included, and this one's particularly interesting because it's an almost all female workshop and also deals with something that no other workshop deals with, so I was just wondering whether we could try to bring it in. Thank you. Thank you, Lynn. Thank you, everyone.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Rodrigo. Eleonora, did you have any first quick -- any -- sorry --
-- any comment on that specific workshop at this point? If no, that's fine. I appreciate there's an awful lot of workshops to keep track of here.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: No, no. I think I know which one Rodrigo is talking about, and I think, you know, if there were -- the basic point is that if there were, you know, a lot of suggestions for additions made on a theme that was already really quite full with proposals, I think logically it was considered a little bit less because, you know, the -- one of the objectives of this exercise was to keep the themes -- the themes balanced, and cybersecurity really does have quite a high number of proposals on it at the moment.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Eleonora. Again, we can just take another quick look at it as well in the context of all the other comments we're getting.
Let's move to the second tab quickly, and I think what we want to do here is just appreciate that people haven't had the time to look through it in any detail but make sure that everybody understands what has happened with the specific theme, and I know there were questions, as I said, on one or two of the other themes.
So the next one after cybersecurity is the human rights, gender, and youth.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi, everyone. I'm displaying it right now. So what we did here was to propose a merger of two submissions, again, that were below the top 40 and on which there were comments proposing them to merge and also to reduce one 90-minute session to 60, which was the lowest ranked 90-minute session in this theme, and then that gave us this clean sheet.
And then if we want to move on to the next theme, the same process was used. There were -- there are suggestions to merge based, again, on the comments in the merger suggestions, and then resulting, again, in this clean sheet where you see the mergers at the bottom.
And then in the Development theme, there were no suggestions to merge that were workable, so the approach was to propose that the lowest ranked 90-minute proposals be reduced to 60, and that's noted here in the column. I'm just going to try to move a little more quickly.
Then in Emerging Technologies, we had six submissions which corresponded already with the proportion that we wanted, and so we left that theme untouched.
On Evolution of Internet Governance, we actually had space for a couple more submissions, and so we added those with mergers within them, so there were more than two submissions added, but because they were merged, there are a total of two.
Media and Content, again, we were at the -- more or less the correct proportion except for one addition that could be made, and that was done. In Technical and Operational topics, we were pretty oversubscribed. There were, you know, about five more proposals that proportionately sort of should have been there, quote, unquote, relative to community interests, so we proposed to merge two of the submissions there based on the comments made by the MAG in the Merger Suggestions column, and, therefore, reducing that theme by one proposal.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: So, Raquel, I think you had a question on the Technical and Operational topics, if I remember earlier from the chat room.
>> RAQUEL GATTO: Thank you very much, Lynn. In fact, I think I have on all of them, but I will try to make it short in this one. For example, in the beginning we said there was no merge between the top 40, and then here is a merge on 25 and 39, which, I mean, it's under the suggestions, but I think either we stick to the criteria that there is no merge in the top 40 or even among the top 40, if we do it, then here is one that has nothing pulled in and the others you have many that are pulled in, even with low grading, so I'm kind of confused on this rationale, and not taking -- I mean, it's an amazing work that Eleonora did, and probably it's my fault not keeping up with the rationale yet. It's too early. I'm getting more coffee. Thank you.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: So what the Secretariat did, based on the discussion and agreement at the MAG meeting, was attempted to get the proportion of workshops that would be in the programme matching the proportion in the call for issues in the workshop submission, so if there was high interest in, for instance, cybersecurity, trust, and privacy, and in the workshop submissions they formed -- pick a number -- they formed 15% of the submissions that were received in the final workshop programme, whether it's 60 or it's 71, they would form roughly 15% of the total workshops in the programme, so that's the -- you know, there's no one top criteria, but that was probably the one that was the most guiding, that the final programme, again, whether it's 60, 65, or 71 workshops, that the proportions of those workshop selections by theme matched what was -- what we saw from the community in the call for issues and the workshop submission, so that was the first. That's what gave us the 68, although with the proposal for 68, when the Secretariat did the work, they didn't net out any of those that were "oversubscribed," in quotes, on the basis of the -- you know, the top 40 ranking.
What the Secretariat has done was to look at those, look at the merger suggestions, look at the specific comments in the MAG meeting and/or sent to the MAG mailing list, and tried to pull those in and optimize across the criteria of proportionality by theme, aligned with the workshop call for submissions, appropriate diversity measures, so, for instance, pulling in one of the Middle East workshops and, you know, basically that's what's proposed in front of you in the 71.
And they've also said they could support more than, you know, what had been anticipated to be 60 workshops because there were a higher proportion of 60-minute workshops accepted than the Secretariat had initially planned for. So that's what we're looking at, and I think what we need to do is not redo the work the MAG did at the last meeting but look and see if those additional workshops that were pulled in, either as a result of a merger suggestion made during the MAG meeting or a Secretariat recommendation on the basis of their studying the programme and see if we're okay with those additions. If there are specific questions, I think we can try and address them. I think we should do that offline so that people can look at them carefully and give the Secretariat some time to respond, but as I said, we need to close this process fairly soon.
So let me see if there were any specific questions. I know we all agree with a thematic balance, but Raquel, you can't say you agree with it but not at the expense of ranking. It's either we're just going for an absolute rank, in which case I'm not sure we even need the MAG, we just let the numbers speak for themselves and we go for an absolute ranking, or we use the thematic balance, expectations of diversity, and try and pull in those workshops that match the community's kind of expressed set of interests.
And I think the decision in front of us is if we think -- if we understand what the community's expression of interest is and we don't think we have workshops on their own that match that criteria, we can either say, sorry, you know, we're not meeting the community's expectation of interest because the workshops weren't of the right quality, or we can try and find some and work with them to get their quality up, and I think the second path is the MAG agreed to take, no different than if we were trying to address some of the diversity characteristics, and it's not an either/or.
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: Lynn.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Hi, Sala.
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: Hi. Lynn, I completely agree with everything you're saying. The MAG, we shouldn't be repeating anything that was discussed at the face-to-face meetings; however, one of the things we'd like to do, though, is the MAG could be given 24 hours, given that (Inaudible) just to compare our notes in relation to the face-to-face meetings that were suggesting mergers and also attempt to look at the role -- the spreadsheet just to see if something fell off the grid and have (Inaudible) to write that to the Secretariat or to the mailing list just to finalize this -- just highlight the (Inaudible - someone typing in the background)
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: I think the 24 hours is obviously a good suggestion, and nobody was going to try and force it on this call because we hadn't shared the list previously.
I've also taken note of some of the other comments in the room where people are insisting they're going to insist on a particular workshop, and I think that's fine to be a champion, but I think we need to, to the best extent possible, work with the whole MAG, and there are always trade-offs. We can ask the Secretariat and I can work with the Secretariat to look at some of the ones that are suggested there, including the one that came in from some UK comments, but I think we need to make sure that this doesn't become a contest of whoever pushes the hardest gets the workshops in, so I want us all to be respectful of the process the MAG put in place and the discussions we all had at the last meeting and work to find an appropriate consensus, a compromise here.
Is there -- somebody has an open mic, which they're asking if it can be closed. Given the amount of typing, I think that might be Eleonora.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Yes. I was responding to the comment. Everyone seems appropriately muted. I'm just wondering if that extraneous noise is still -- okay. It's gone.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: So how is this for a process? We allow everybody to look at the spreadsheet that came through. We will go back through the comments here in the chat room and, of course, those, you know, made voice-to-voice here as well, and kind of revisit those questions. There was also a comment, I think, from Jennifer, which suggested maybe a different format for some of those that were ranked lower, and I think that's a possibility as well, so -- you know, with the -- you know, with the really good input we've received so far here on this, that we go back and look at some of the questions or comments that have been raised, and we will -- in the meantime, if the MAG members could continue reviewing, send any comments in, I think they should be sent to the full MAG list, and, of course, we need to recognize, of course, that the MAG list is public, but I think that's the only way to ensure that the MAG is appropriately involved, and then we will get back to you -- what's today? Today's Wednesday. We'll get back to you by the end of the week with the Secretariat's final list.
Are there any additional comments or questions on this particular topic? Doing a slow count to six. Not seeing any.
Let me just answer, the -- so, Raquel, it's not -- I'm not sure what you mean by going beyond ten proposals. In fact, they've pulled in three. Two of them had previously been accepted, and all they're suggesting is that the workshop organizers -- and I think they all came from the same broad group of people -- work to pull in some of the concepts that were attached in others, so, in fact, it's three -- three new workshops that were pulled in.
>> RAQUEL GATTO: Sorry, Lynn, but I meant in total the merge refers to about ten workshop proposals.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: But they're --
>> RAQUEL GATTO: Not the spots that are taken.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: But they're merging three into one. I just want to make sure we're saying the same thing. Like, for instance, cybersecurity and trust, 80, 81, 8, or 80, 81, 83, whatever those numbers are, those were merged into one proposals, if that makes any sense.
I guess this is between Sala and Eleonora. They're looking for the diversity assessment for the new batch here of proposals. Is that possible to do?
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi, Lynn. Hi, everyone. Yes, we can do that.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Excellent. Thank you. Thank you so much. Sala, I really appreciate too all your leadership. We have the document of these wonderful pivot tables that we can create this next year as well.
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: You're welcome.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Okay. So let me still go back to see if there were any general updates from the Secretariat on Agenda Item 2? Is there anything you wanted to add, Eleonora, or I'm not sure, Chengetai?
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi, Lynn. I don't know if Chengetai would like to add anything, but thank you for informing the MAG of the Open Forums process. I mean, since I think everyone should have that more or less clear from the MAG list, I don't think we have any further updates, at least not from my side.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Eleonora. And Chengetai, I don't want to pull you in inappropriately, but is there anything that you want to add?
>> CHENGETAI MASANGO: (No response)
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Giving you a moment to find your unmute button. I'm not seeing any movement from his side, so we can put a note in the chat room. In fact, I think he's just gone.
I have a call with Ambassador Martinon this afternoon his time, morning my time, for some updates. They are working with the President's office on the title. They have come back and confirmed that, you know, in line with the discussion at the MAG meeting and support for two main pillars, one being digital revolution, revolution, and the other one trust, that they will come back with a proposal that incorporates those two pillars. They expect that to happen next week, and then we're continuing to understand how we might advance with respect to synergies between the Paris Peace Forum and the IGF, and we'll continue to track kind of their thoughts and preparations on the High-Level Forum that they're actually considering, and, of course, if there's any substantive update as well, we'll ensure that the MAG is aware of that.
Beyond that, I don't think there are any further updates from the host country side.
Are there any -- we'll come to the -- you know, the third item, which is where we'll discuss the thematic session proposals and that sort of thing, but are there any other questions on kind of general preparations or any other update -- updates from the Secretariat, questions?
Renata is suggesting in the chat room that remind people again about the IGF Resource list once the workshops are publicized in case some need new speakers. I think the French are also willing to provide a list of additional sort of high-level speakers, similar to what the Swiss government did yesterday with the -- did last year with the international organizations in Geneva, so I think we can work to take them up on that and perhaps provide that to the thematic main session organizers and even possibly just make the workshops that were accepted aware that that offer to help is there.
So if there are no other questions on that particular item, let's move to Item -- that was 2 and 3, Updates by the Secretariat and Updates by the Host Country.
We move to Item 4, which is review open items from the open consultation, second physical MAG meeting, specifically including a thematic or main session process. So I think what we've agreed last time is there would be eight thematic sessions, roughly 08 minutes long, that those thematic sessions obviously align with the themes that were indicated in the call for issues and supported in the workshop submissions.
The Secretariat has prepared a Doodle Poll, but before we set it up, we wanted to have this discussion -- a Doodle Poll which lists each one of the themes, and I recall that in two of them, we actually have significant NRI and Dynamic Coalition involvement, but the proposal was that we establish, following past practices, small Working Groups to define and propose to the full MAG a topic for those thematic sessions. The Doodle Poll would simply allow people to express their interests where proposing a yes and kind of if need be to make sure we have ample room to cover all of the themes.
And then I think what those Working Groups should do is establish, you know, some co-facilitators and, frankly, begin a discussion amongst yourself on possible topics, structure, formats, that sort of thing, and when there's a substantive enough proposal but still early enough that the MAG can weigh in on the specifics that that be shared with the MAG list.
So we have a memo kind of nearly launched which outlines -- points to some of the previous MAG main session guidelines and points out some of these other criteria as well.
I want to remind everybody that the main session should follow the same criteria as the workshops with respect to diversity. There is no single stakeholder group that owns any one of the themes, and we would hope that the Working Group would actually be balanced in terms of both region and stakeholder groups and, of course, that the session reflects that as well.
So I will come to -- I mean, are there any kind of thoughts on a Doodle Poll or what we're actually suggesting here? Sala, I'll come to your question in just a moment.
One of the other things we had thought, and we could work with the Secretariat to identify this, is where there are proposals that, you know, frankly, we've been saying were outside of the top 40, whether it was pulled in because of a diversity requirement or, you know, a merge suggestion, that we ask those thematic Working Groups to look at those additional workshops and work to ensure that they're certainly adding something which is complementary to the other workshops and that they're of the appropriate level. So I can pose that as an additional task in the memo if everybody believes that's an appropriate way to address that.
The way we've addressed those, you know, in brackets, conditional workshops, in the past, was we had a few MAG members agree to mentor them, but given now we have the thematic Working Groups, maybe perhaps the more straightforward way to do that would be through those Working Groups.
I see lots of support for the Doodle Poll.
Mary, you have the floor. Mary Uduma, I see you're not yet unmuted. Yeah. There you go, Mary.
>> MARY UDUMA: Hello. Can you hear me?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Yes.
>> MARY UDUMA: Hi. Okay. Thank you very much. Now we are discussing the thematic session of the main sessions. First is that -- there are already first in the NRI which naturally will take up the evolution of IGF as the topic that NRI had through a bottom-up process had come up with this one. The other one is that there had been a mailing circulation -- a mailing list discussion on the high-level panel, whether we should give them a main session or give them an Open Forum. I don't know whether it's the right time to talk about it or we'll talk about it later. Some of us are of the opinion if we give them a main session, then the possibility will be there, and, again, it will attract more audience, then, who will have the opportunity to hear them out, and other people will have the opportunity to hear them out as well, or some have suggested it should be an Open Forum, but we think -- I think and some other people that have supported my proposal is that -- is that we give them main session and not the Open Forum. And when we give them main session, then one Open Forum would be available for another workshop. That's what we also are thinking of. I don't know how others look at it. Thank you.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Mary. Those are both really good points.
Let me take -- I'll come to the high-level political forum in a second, but with respect to the NRI suggestion for Internet governance, the expectation is -- and, again, the MAG has had a desire for greater visibility and greater integration of all the intersessional activities, and I think that's, you know, an objective which is shared by the intersessional activities and by the NRIs as well, so I think the -- the NRIs and the MAG, those MAG members that expressed interest in that particular theme, should work together to come up with a best possible main session, and I think that's where we were after the last MAG meeting.
Similar for the Dynamic Coalitions, which had suggested development and economic issues, and, in fact, there had been a suggestion from some MAG members as well, and I think it's appropriate that the DCs, those MAG members, and any other MAG members that are interested in that particular topic should come together as part of that Working Group to build that main session, so we'll need to work, I think, with the NRI focal point and with the kind of co-facilitators of the DCs to figure out what that kind of Working Group process looks like for those two groups and those two themes, but, yes, we are still very much on that track.
And I will come to the parallel sessions on the main thematic sessions in just a moment. I see there's a lot of chat in the chat room on that.
With respect to the High-Level Forum, there was a discussion on the list. I would say there was no consensus. Some people were in support of a main session for the High-Level Panel, others were in support of an Open Forum. I'll simply point out that if we want to have a main session on this particular topic that that means we need to either merge the existing main sessions because there is no additional slot available, so I think the discussion from the MAG is do we have an Open Forum, which, you know, I think is still a very appropriate session for them, particularly as it's still quite early in their tenure and maybe it would actually facilitate greater engagement. If we want, quote, unquote, to use one of the thematic sessions for a main session on this, then, frankly, the only difference is the fact that it's interpreted, which is, obviously, helpful -- all the sessions are transcribed, and they should all have the same level of community engagement as well, but that would mean that we have to reduce the current set of themes by one in order to accommodate one additional main session. And I think, you know, the difficulty is, as someone is saying here in the chat room, that if we're to mirror the themes that were expressed by the community with thematic sessions, then, you know, sadly, that just doesn't leave room for an additional main session.
So at this point, I think the expectation from the MAG, leaving the MAG meeting, is given, again, the community interest on eight themes, the MAG's expression of wanting to reflect that level of community interest in those themes by having dedicated thematic sessions, then, that that would mean that this high-level political session has to take an Open Forum slot.
Are there any further -- I mean, one thing we could do is continue with the thematic -- I mean, I really hope everybody comes up with a proposal for a thematic main session, and I suppose in the likelihood that one of them isn't delivered, then we could slot the High-Level Political Forum in later in the process , but that's not something we would know now. And my reading for support of the MAG, kind of what trumps the interest of this community that matches each one of them. Again, I'm trying simply to interpret the MAG's will here.
I'm reading all the comments in the chat room. It seems as though there's support for Open Forum. Mary spoke about using a thematic session slot, but I'm not seeing a lot of other comments in the chat room supporting that.
I want -- Eleonora, just -- I always want you to give the chance -- give you the chance to come in if there's anything else you think -- somebody is typing pretty loudly in the background there, but Eleonora, is there any other insight or comments you want to add here?
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi, Lynn. Thank you. I mean, I think that this discussion of, you know, Open Forum vs. main session is interesting, and it's -- it's nice to see so much support for including the panel in the meeting in some way, and just from a purely organizational standpoint, I mean, the Open Forum slot is easy for us to accommodate in the schedule.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: And we could certainly make sure that it's at a -- you know, a very visible time as well and, you know, in one of the larger rooms, and, again, it's screened -- streamed and transcribed, and I think it would ensure that we actually have a more open exchange.
So Renata is suggesting that we call it a special session, which is not a bad idea, actually. I mean, if we want to distinguish it somehow from an Open Forum and yet leave room for the eight thematic sessions, I'm sure we could find, you know, a way to cull it out a little bit more, and we can certainly consider using one of the other slots, but we've also had strong feedback that, you know, we should leave the kind of lunchtime slots for bilateral meetings and other meetings, and, of course, people need time to get lunch as well, so we can take those suggestions into consideration.
No -- and I also see some of the -- some of the concerns re: precedence for special sessions, but let me go back to Mary for a final comment on this. Again, Mary, my reading of everybody's comment at the MAG meeting and certainly here on this call and in the chat room is strong support for an Open Forum and not reducing the number of thematic sessions or not taking away from the theme basis of the thematic main sessions. Mary, you have the floor. Mary? Mary, you seem to be unmuted, but we can't hear you. Mary, could you try again? Or perhaps in the chat room. I really would like to hear from Mary, as she actually opened this topic. Let me just give her another minute. Mary, do you want to put something in the chat room? Mary, we can see you talking, but it's not coming through. I'm sure Luis is trying to help you in the background troubleshoot it.
All right. Well, let me -- maybe Mary can type her comment in the chat room, and we'll go on to the other question that was posed -- posed earlier, and we'll come back and try and close this one out in just a moment. Again, I really would like to hear from her, as she opened this up.
So there was a question -- I'm not sure I understood it -- which is either wanting to ensure that there were no -- there were no other thematic workshops in parallel to the thematic main session, is that the question? I'm trying to scroll back and find it. Whoever made the initial point, if you could take the floor and clarify the question. So it was from Sala. It would be good to have an indication on how many parallel sessions. I think that answer is ten. Eleonora, is that right, that there are ten sessions in parallel? Again, we had actually hoped to reduce that number, but given it's a three-day meeting --
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Hi, Lynn. Yes, that's correct, and that corresponds to, really, the number of rooms, physical rooms that we'll have hosting sessions in parallel.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Eleonora. Let me just see if that answered the question.
So, Mary, again, are you able to type your answer in the -- type your question or comment in the chat room or do you want to try voice again? I'm sympathetic to the problems of connections given my own problems here this morning.
Okay. Mary says, not everyone that supports the main sessions are on the call. I would think it's only those in support of Open Forums that are participating. The issue is that most Open Forums would be mostly in parallel.
The main sessions, the thematic sessions are in parallel as well, Mary. Really, the only significant differences between a thematic and main session or Open Forum and any other workshop session is the fact that they are interpreted. They take place most often in a larger room, but it really is the interpretation. And if we can't -- I'm wondering. If we can't -- I think the -- the issue is that in order to give the High-Level Political Forum, a quote, main session, we need to take one of the thematic main sessions from the community process that said these are the topics we're interested in in which we have multiple workshop sessions in support of, so I think we need to go forward with the High-Level Political Forum on being an Open Forum. We can continue to think about what we might do to make sure it gets, you know, an appropriate level of visibility. You know, possibly, there's even the possibility to -- I suppose through volunteers, if people thought it was important to -- we could translate kind of the key points or key concepts that come out of the meeting to ensure that it gets broad distribution after the IGF, given that it won't be interpreted, but I think we need to stay with the High-Level Forum being an Open Forum and the eight previously called main sessions, thematic sessions focus on the eight -- the eight themes.
And I'll come to the questions in a moment. No, we have not received the proposals for the main sessions. The next step is within a matter of hours, we will get a Doodle Poll out and a document defining how we're going to move forward through the definition of those thematic sessions, and then the MAG will await proposals from those small Working Groups, and, you know, it's absolutely our expectation that we get eight proposals for the thematic sessions that are set up. In the unlikely event that, you know, we are not able to deliver one, you know, we could tentatively expect to move the high-level session into that slot, but at this point I think we need to go forward with kind of the will of the MAG, both from the last physical meeting and this call maintaining the eight thematic sessions per the community interest.
And, yes, again, when we have a thematic session, there are other workshops in parallel to that thematic session. The only sessions that do not have competing workshops is the opening session, which is the formal opening session, and the host country session, and then the closing session, Taking Stock.
And let me see if there was any other questions there. So Raquel had a -- no, the -- if I understand the question, the 48-hour process was to allow everybody time to look at the spreadsheet for the proposed final list for the IGF Programme, send any further comments to the MAG list. The Secretariat and I will review those comments as well as the comments made here in this call to see if there is any other, you know, accommodations that can be made, and the Secretariat and Sala will also provide an update of the diversity statistics for the speakers.
I'm going to give Markus the floor and then quickly scan the chat to see if there's any questions we've missed. Markus, you have the floor.
>> MARKUS KUMMER: Yes. Thank you. Can you hear me?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Yes.
>> MARKUS KUMMER: Yeah. I'm getting a bit confused. I think the Dynamic Coalitions requested a session on the theme Development -- whatever it is worded, with a focus on sustainable development, and it was my understanding that they were given that session and that MAG members were invited to be actively participating, but now it seems to have shifted a bit, and I think if I read you correctly, you said with significant NRI or DC involvement in some of the main sessions, so are the DCs not in the driving seat of that particular session? If that is so, I would obviously have to go back to the DCs to see whether they would be interested. If not, they might request a separate session, which will be a DC thematic session. So I'm -- as I said, I'm a bit confused, and I would appreciate your clarification. Thanks.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thanks, Markus. So first of all, I hope we have DC and NRI and BPF engagement in all of the Working Groups responsible for thematic sessions. That should be just an operating principle. I would encourage those MAG -- those MAG members that are part of those thematic Working Groups to reach out to all the intersessional activities and to the NRIs for continued engagement. That's one principle. Maybe that's why some of the words were confusing.
I don't believe in the MAG meeting we were identifying any one entity as the driver or in the driving seat. I mean, I think this is a new set of processes we're actually putting in place here. We have for the MAG a set of guidelines for how the main sessions or thematic sessions have historically been developed. Obviously, we are -- that's evolving, specifically for the topic of Internet Governance Evolution and for the Development and Economic issues.
You know, I don't know why we think we need to have a driver. I think we should be able to have the DCs who had some excellent thoughts on specifically that topic and a number of MAG members who also had some thoughts on that topic as well work together to deliver, you know, the best possible thematic session.
We have those thematic sessions with those themes because the community expressed interest in those themes, and I think we need to ensure that we build a process that looks across the MAG, which is responsible for interpreting, if you will, the community's desires, and, of course, those expert groups that are reflected in the intersessional and NRI activities.
So I hope that -- I hope that clarifies, Markus. And I'm not trying to -- frankly, I'm not trying to sort of subjugate the role of the MAG or the DCs, but would hope that when we have one group of people that are, again, meant to reflect the community's desires in terms of shaping the overall programme and another group of individuals that are, you know, deeply engaged in and expert in some of these topics, as are some MAG members, come together to build a programme that really meets the community's desires.
>> MARKUS KUMMER: If I may come back, we obviously have to report back to the DCs. The answer is they requested a session they could organize, and the answer is they are not given a session they could organize, but they're invited to participate in a session on theme they had requested? Is that the way I would interpret the question?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: No, that's not the way I would word it at all. The DCs requested a main session on a topic. That topic aligns exactly with one of the themes the community has expressed significant interest in, and we are asking a Working Group to be formed with DC engagement and MAG engagement to deliver that session. I'm happy to have any other MAG members jump in here, but I thought that's where we left it at the last MAG meeting. Again, we're trying to optimize across the MAG, who has responsibility for, historically, the thematic sessions, and there's been no discussion about, you know, changing that wholesale, and a reduced number of slots available, and we're trying to find an optimization and an accommodation.
The MAG has also stated for several years now -- and has have, I think, the intersessional activities and the NRIs, where we've been looking for more integration between the MAG and all those activities, and I think this is, you know, an excellent opportunity to kind of try and evolve our processes and pilot that, so, you know, I don't believe it's an either/or situation. I really would prefer that it not be represented that way. But please come back if you think, you know, that I'm -- I don't know -- trying to thread the needle too finely here or something.
>> MARKUS KUMMER: Just again, the past three years the DCs had a main session, and in the past three years, it was organized a bit differently, but it was more to highlight their activities and to bring them into the fold of the broader IGF community, and, again, they requested a main session, and it is complex enough to have all the DCs organizing together, but in this particular case, in whatever way you want to describe it -- and I can follow your logic, but the answer is they are not organizing a main session. They will be participating in the -- they're invited to participate in the organization of a main session on the theme they have proposed.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: There is a difference in the way you're, frankly, stating it, I could say polarize it. They could be co-organizers. You know, they're -- so I think they're co-organizers. We can't -- the MAG was pretty clear that we thought we should have thematic main sessions, and, yes, the DCs did request a main session. They do have a main session. They are co-organizing a main session. I don't think that is a significant change from past years, you know. Frankly, the MAG would see it as a change as well where in past years they've organized main sessions, and now, in fact, if they will, they're co-organizers. I would suspect some of them may not even like the term "co-organizer" from the MAG side either, but the MAG and all these other activities have looked for greater integration. We have a limited number of thematic slots. We have a desire from the MAG, which I think represents the community's desire to have a significant programme built around these eight themes. We're simply trying to bring in, as I said earlier, all the kind of intersessional activities and expert voices, if you will, to come alongside the MAG, who also are, you know, expert in some of these areas and have a responsibility for the overall programme, to work together, to co-organize a main session. If anything -- and if anything, I mean, I could see this as, you know, an elevation, if you will, in terms of it being a partnership between the MAG and some of these activities in organizing the sessions.
>> MARKUS KUMMER: Well, thank you for the clarification. It is clearer now.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: And I hope -- hope makes sense and supported.
>> MARKUS KUMMER: Well, we have to go back to the Dynamic Coalitions, and I hope that we'll be able to get their support for this proposal. Thanks.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: And I'm happy to join that call as well if that would help, Markus. You know, we all respect very much the work the DCs do, and I think this is a good opportunity to sort of further the integration and, as I said, build the best thematic session we can on this particular topic.
>> MARKUS KUMMER: Thank you for that, and you'll be most welcome to join the call.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Markus. I've been trying to keep up with the chat in the background. It's a little difficult. Is there anything that I've missed there or anything else that we should bring forward?
>> ANJA GENGO: Hi, Lynn. This is Anja. Would it be appropriate if I comment?
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: It would be very appropriate, Anja.
>> ANJA GENGO: My understanding and my understanding of the majority of the MAG members, directly affiliated with the NRIs, after the MAG face-to-face meeting was the request from the NRIs to co-organize a main session on the topic of the evolution of Internet governance focused on the multi-stakeholder approach was approved by the MAG to be conducted in collaboration with the MAG, and there was communicated to the NRIs, and I have to say very well accepted. The NRIs noted that's very feasible on their side because there are at least ten MAG members that are directly affiliated with the NRIs as coordinators or as members of the organizing committees, so in that sense, the MAG members are aware, first of all, of the processes happening on the national and regional levels, and I think that will also save us time in planning, and in that sense, they're very much, of course, welcome to join the NRI's calls, and I will be happy -- I will actually reach out to them after I communicate with the NRI's colleague to set up that communication. Of course, that doesn't mean the doors are closed to anyone else, I'm just noting, as Markus said, the processes on the side of the NRIs and I'm going to dare to say also on the DCs, are very, very complex, and the understanding should be by everyone that each decision is based on a consensus and each decision is made not by those 30, 40 people that are joining bimonthly calls but really by large communities, thanks to those people that are attending the calls and running consultations on the NRI levels and bringing it up to the Secretariat to try to seek further compromise.
So that was the understanding, I just wanted to kind of confirm with you, but I think there was the same understanding of all of us during the MAG meeting, and that was communicated to the NRIs. Thank you.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Anja, and, I mean, I like a lot of the -- you know, the language and the phrasing you used.
Let me just clarify something. So if we were to send a Doodle Poll out asking MAG members to express their interests for these Working Groups -- my, you know, initial thought was that we would include both the Development and Economic issues as well as the Internet Governance issues so that any MAG members who were specifically interested in supporting those two Working Groups could indicate that they were doing so. It may be the same, you know, the folks you've actually referenced here in your comments, but is that -- are you suggesting a different process or does that process still work for the NRIs?
>> ANJA GENGO: Lynn, thank you. Well, I think, as I said, I mean, I will need to communicate to the NRI colleagues if there is an input of another nature from this call because my also understanding from the MAG face-to-face meeting -- and I will say I think the understanding of the NRIs that are represented on the MAG was that they will co-organize a session in collaboration with the MAG on the agreed topic.
Is there -- I'm just trying to understand what is the different alternative approach and is that --
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: No, no, I think it is very much a co-organizing event. It's how are the MAG members -- what we're asking for all the other thematic groups is for the MAG members to express their interest in participating in one of the thematic Working Groups, so, for instance, for cybersecurity, we would ask any MAG members who were interested in supporting Cybersecurity Trust and Privacy thematic main session to please indicate your interest here.
I was going to include the same thing for the Development and Economic Issues, the ones that the DCs are co-organizing and the Internet Governance, which are the ones that the NRI was co-organizing.
>> ANJA GENGO: Thank you. Now I understand. Thank you very much for explaining.
Well, I actually don't think the colleagues will be against that approach. Of course, I'm saying this with a small reservation because I do need to consult concretely on this idea, as I was not consulted before, with the NRI colleagues, but as I said, I think the MAG members also -- a number of them are aware how complex those processes are and that you have to have a background knowledge, first of all, of the process. It's not just about the format of the session and the substance, but it's also about the specificities that exist with certain countries and certain regions, which I think it's very important to be included, and also about the process for organizing that session itself, so it's not about a group of people organizing, it's really about coordinators going to their communities, consulting them, coming back with inputs and so on, so usually it's very time-consuming, but I think in that sense, the NRIs, of course, will not be against this process, but I do think that the MAG members that would like to join this particular work just have to be aware of this quick note that I just shared.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: And I think those are all, you know, wise words, Anja. I mean, you know, my expectation is those MAG members that are active in the NRIs, I would assume that, you know, that's probably one of or maybe the Working Group that they actually sign up for. If we find that they're oversubscribed, then I think we can revisit that. I mean, the MAG has a commitment to support all eight thematic sessions. They are the organizers of six and I think co-organizers of two, and to answer some of the other questions in the chat room, I think that was agreed at the last MAG meeting that for Development of Economic Issues there was going to be DC -- DC as the co-organizer. They suggested that topics. We also had MAG members that had suggested similar topics. Again, given it's one of the eight themes the community supports, I do think there needs to be a MAG engagement in those discussions. I don't think they need to be problematic, you know, in either direction, and I think we all recognize that there are different processes in place here, particularly with the NRIs and the DCs and the MAG members that participate in that Working Group to co-organize the session, of course, need to understand that and be supportive of it.
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: Can you hear me? This is Sala.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Hi, Sala.
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: (Inaudible)
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: You're very faint, Sala.
>> SALANIETA TAMANIKAIWAIMARO: Sorry. I just wanted to -- I'm trying to speak as close as possible to the speaker. I just wanted to say that I fully support the process that you're suggesting, and also, in terms of the last face-to-face meeting, I just wanted to clarify for those who are present on this call from the intersessional and also MAG members who supported the NRI, myself included, with one of the strong supporters of the NRI, is that the -- the Working Group process, the Working Groups are not taking away from the NRIs. It's not taking away from the Dynamic Coalitions or the BPFs or any of the intersessionals, but just to emphasize, no, it wasn't approved, Mary. What actually happened was there was consensus in support from MAG members supporting the NRI on a specific theme and topic, and so, basically, what you're saying, Lynn -- and I just wanted to repeat -- is that those who were interested in those themes -- so, for instance, if the NRIs were interested in the access theme, then they can certainly go into those Working Groups and pivot and shape the suggested main session proposals that come out from them. Similarly for the Dynamic Coalitions. Only because here we're working with serious time and resource constraints. Apologies for my voice because it's very early in the morning, but I thought I'd just share that, and that's not to take away from the NRIs proposing a main session, obviously ensuring that there's substantial MAG involvement at the same time, given that some of the MAG members and NRI coordinators are members also. That being said, I fully support Lynn's proposal. Thank you.
>> LYNN ST. AMOUR: Thank you, Sala. Maybe one of the things we can do, kind of adjust the notes and even the Doodle Poll to make it clear is I think for the six themes the MAG is organizing, they can follow the kind of MAG Main Session Guidelines. For the ones with the DCs and the NRIs, maybe we suggest there that that process needs to reflect fully, you know, the individual natures of those activities. You know, both of them are heavily consultative, and that does take time, and both of those groups have already invested sort of time in getting to a short list or even the, you know, very high-level kind of straw proposal here, but maybe we can suggest that those two Working Groups be built on the sort of special organizing principles of the DCs and the NRIs so that it doesn't feel -- because I don't think that would be in the spirit of what the MAG approves -- so it doesn't feel that the DCs and the NRIs have simply been invited to come into a MAG process. I think we're actually trying to establish a process that looks at co-organizing two thematic workshops, both reflecting and respecting the modalities of those other activities, namely the NRIs and the DCs, so that we build processes that respect those modalities as well as I think allows the MAG room to carry out their set of responsibilities to the community.
Let me see if there are any further comments on that. This has been a really, really useful discussion, so thank you to Markus and Anja, in particular, for bringing it up and helping us strive to clarification, and I'm hoping that some of what I just said actually helps ease some of the DCs' concerns or Markus's concerns as well.
Again, I don't think any part of this community is trying to be heavy-handed or top-heavy. I think we're all trying to work in a collaborative manner, respecting the different processes and the different responsibilities. NRIs and DCs have responsibilities to their communities, and equally, the MAG has responsibility to the global IGF community as well, so we're trying to pull those pieces together appropriately to deliver the best thematic sessions we can.
Are there any other topics that we should cover here? We have booked meetings out for the most part every two weeks. I think there was a three-week session in August. We can -- we did that in case -- in case they were needed. I think, you know, we need to get started on reviewing the thematic sessions quite soon, so we will poll the MAG to see who's going to be prepared to talk to some of these proposals and any other updates with respect to some of the critical events happening through the French side here and make a determination as to whether or not we keep the future -- the future calls.
People should expect the main sessions to go for 80 minutes. Again, we're sharing a three-hour slot, and we need 15 to 20 minutes to empty the room from one session and get the room set up for the second session.
And -- so the opening. The opening is a three-hour session. There's two parts to the opening, Sala. There's a part which is the formal sort of UN and host country opening of the meeting, and then there's usually a -- kind of a -- it used to be called VIP. It's more accurately called the High-Level, but we don't want to confuse it with the high-level session from the day before. That sort of takes up the other two and a half hours of the three-hour session on the first day. Yes, there will be parallel -- no, there will not be parallel main sessions, but there are other workshops in parallel to the main sessions.
And then Raquel is actually asking for a quick summary. So the -- you have the spreadsheet in front of you with which I'm going to thank a really good explanation from the Secretariat of their process, again, and we rely very heavily on the MAG meeting and the direction that came from the MAG meeting while trying to address some of the various kind of diversity requirements or expectations that had come up.
Eleonora and Sala have agreed to send the diversity characteristics out. I think we can use that to continue shaping the agenda, and, again, I think we need to think sort of carefully about those diversity characteristics based only on the workshops because they would not, obviously, include the diversity of the Open Forums, nor would they include the diversity of the main sessions, as they're not yet complete, but those are certainly other vehicles we can use to address any kind of imbalances.
What we had agreed was that the MAG would have 48 hours to look over the spreadsheet, send in any additional comments. The Secretariat and I will look at the comments that were made here, either by voice or in the chat room, and we will watch the mailing list as well for any additional comments, and the Secretariat will pull together the final programme on the basis of the pending reviews and this review here in particular, which is the same effort and same process that's been used in the past.
Again, it's a UN conference. The Secretariat has had some discretion. They try not to use that any more than is absolutely necessary, and, again, I think in this instance, they've used very little, if any, discretion, and really tried to follow the MAG direction, including support for the request for the French government for a few additional sessions that really reflect the interests of the French community.
So if we're okay with that, I will close the meeting. If there are any other questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to me individually or on the MAG list. Thank you. A great thank you to the Secretariat for all the work. We all know that they're down one significant resource, but they've just done tremendous work here in the last two weeks, and I want to thank them very, very much. Thank you, everybody. Talk to you soon.
>> ELEONORA MAZZUCCHI: Thanks, everyone. Bye.
>> MIGUEL IGNACIO ESTRADA: Thanks, everyone. Bye.