05 Oct 2023

GPD at the 2023 Internet Governance Forum

The Global Partners Digital team will be out in force at the 18th annual meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF), which will take place in Kyoto, Japan from 8 to 12 October 2023. The theme of this year’s IGF is: The Internet We Want – Empowering All People.

Below, find a summary of the key sessions we’re involved in organising or moderating.


Sunday 8 October (Day 0)

Scoping Civil Society engagement in Digital Cooperation

13:30-15:30 local time (04.30 – 06.30 UTC) | Room I

This session aims to discuss ways of better integrating civil society participants into the UN’s Global Digital Compact discussions, as well as raising awareness around the relevance of including voices from the Global majorities.

Moderated by GPD’s Sheetal Kumar (on site) and Bruna Martins dos Santos (online).


  • Valéria Betancourt, APC
  • Peter Micek, Access Now


Tuesday 10 October (Day 2)

Policy Network on Internet Fragmentation session

9.00 – 11.30 local time (00.00 – 02.30 UTC) | Main Hall

The session will discuss the work of the Policy Network in 2022 and 2023.

Co-facilitated by GPD’s Sheetal Kumar and Bruna Martins dos Santos, Digital Action.


  • Olaf Kolkman, Internet Society
  • Rosalind KennyBirch, UK Department for Science, Innovation and Technology
  • Vittorio Bertola, Open-Xchange


WS #446 Successes & challenges: cyber capacity building coordination

11.00 – 12.30 local time (02.00 – 03.30 UTC) | Room B-1

A session to enhance coordination between all stakeholders who are involved in cyber capacity building, aiming to produce a set of practical policy recommendations on improving cyber capacity building coordination at the global, national, and stakeholder levels.

Moderated by Calandro Enrico, Technical Community, WEOG.

Organisers: Cyber4Dev, Global Partners Digital, GIZ


  • Tereza Horejsova, Civil Society, Eastern European Group
  • Rita Maduo Badumeleng, Technical Community, African Group
  • Anatolie Golovco, Government, Eastern European Group
  • Claire Stoffels, Government, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
  • Hurel Louise Marie, Civil Society, WEOG
  • Regine Grienberger, Government, WEOG
  • Hiroto Yamazaki, Government, Asia Pacific Regional Group


WS #288: A Global Human Rights Approach to Responsible AI Governance

11.30 – 13.00 local time (02.30 – 04.00 UTC) | Room A

A discussion on the global implications of the rapid design, development and deployment of consumer facing AI products, with a focus on the human rights impacts and the need for enhanced accountability from public and private actors.

Moderated by Ian Barber, Global Partners Digital, WEOG

Organised by Global Partners Digital and Transparência Brasil


  • Marlena Wisniak, Civil Society, WEOG
  • Vladimir Garay, Civil Society, GRULAC
  • Tara Denham, Government, WEOG
  • Shahla Naimi, Private Sector, WEOG
  • Prateek Sibal, Intergovernmental Organization,
  • Rumman Chowdhury, Civil Society, WEOG
  • Oluseyi Oyebisi, Civil Society, African Group


AI main session: AI that we want

15.15 – 16.45 JST (06.15 – 07.45 UTC) | Main Hall

The goal of this main session is to discuss how AI could be designed, regulated, and harmonized to better serve all humans and how this can be achieved.

Moderated by Maria Paz Canales, Global Partners Digital, Civil Society, GRULAC

Organised by MAG IGF


  • Arisa Ema, University of Tokyo, Academia, Asia Pacific Regional Group
  • Alan Davidson, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Communications and Administrator, US NTIA, Government, WEOG
  • James Hairston, Head of International Policy & Partnership at OpenAI, Private Sector, WEOW
  • Clara Neppel, Senior Director, European Operations at IEEE, Technical Community, WEOG
  • Joris Cyizere, Centre for the Fourth Industrial Revolution Rwanda, Academia, African Group


Thursday 12 October (Day 4)

Open Forum #84 Shaping a UN Cyber Programme of Action

8.30 – 9.30 local time (23.30 – 00.30 UTC) | Room B-2

An open discussion around the Cyber Programme of Action (PoA), a proposal by a group of UN member states in 2020 for a permanent forum of institutional dialogue on responsible state behaviour in cyberspace.

Moderated by Ellie McDonald, Global Partners Digital

Organised by Global Affairs Canada, Australian Department for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Global Partners Digital, Access Now


  • David Fairchild, Global Affairs Canada, WEOG
  • David Hevey, Australian Permanent Mission to the UN, Geneva, Asia-Pacific
  • Henri Verdier, French Ministry for Europe and Foreign Affairs, WEOG
  • Joyce Hakmeh, Chatham House
  • Raman Jit Singh, Access Now, Asia-Pacific


WS #460 Internet standards and human rights

09.45 – 10.45 local time (00.45 – 01.45 UTC) | Annex Hall 1

This session aims to equip participants will practical guidelines and best practices for integrating human rights concerns and safeguards into technical standards in an inclusive manner, including concrete steps to implement the recommendations put forth by the UN OHCHR report on the topic.

Moderated by Sheetal Kumar, Global Partners Digital
Organised by GPD, OHCHR, ECNL, European Commission DG INTPA


  • Rafael Zanatta, Civil Society, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
  • Eva Ignatuschtschenko, Government, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
  • Vanessa Cravo, Government, Latin American and Caribbean Group (GRULAC)
  • Jessamine Pacis, Civil Society, Asia-Pacific Group
  • Peggy Hicks, Intergovernmental Organization


IGF 2023 Best Practice Forum on Cybersecurity

9.45 – 11.15 local time (00.45 – 02.15 UTC) | Main Hall