3rd Biennial Symposium on The Internet: Governance and the Law
MONTRÉAL, Québec – Sunday, 26 October 2008 – Wednesday, 29 October 2008
McGill University will host the 3rd biennial symposium on The Internet:
Governance and the Law in cooperation with the Center for International Legal Studies and Suffolk University School of Law. This symposium will examine issues of Internet governance which have arisen following the conclusion of the World Summit on the Information Society.
At the conclusion of the Geneva phase of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), civil society was called upon to play an active role in the development and implementation of national strategies affecting multimodal communication. This role was intended to be primarily consultative in that civil society was deemed to have the potential power to assist in devising and implementing ICT policies and promoting the “good governance” of the Internet. Clearly, civil society showed its commitment to creating “an equitable Information Society” and has become a valuable stakeholder in the definition of action plans and the implementation of policy initiatives. Moreover, the inclusive “we”
of the Tunis Commitment was intended to enlist the support of civil society in the building of “a people-centered, inclusive and development-oriented Information Society”.
Several issues in the post-Tunis phase of WSIS have been topics of research and further discussion among civil society groups as interested stakeholders and between civil society and those charged with “good governance”.
This multilateral stakeholder approach has cast civil society in a consultative and representative role as a change agent in ICT decision-making structures affecting policies, standards, laws and
regulations as well as the control and ownership of the Internet. In one sense, civil society has been empowered in fora where its voice may be heard while, in other instances, civil society has experienced a form of disempowerment which has limited its ability to act as a change agent.
Speakers at the 2008 symposium will address these and related issues under the guidance of the members of the Advisory Program Committee:
James Archibald, Department of Translation Studies, McGill University,
Dennis Campbell, Center for International Legal Studies, Richard Gold,
Centre for Intellectual Property Policy, McGill University and Michael
L. Rustad, Intellectual Property Law Program, Suffolk University School
For further information consult the symposium WEB site: