Friday, July 17, 2015

OECD digital economy outlook: Internet governance, a policy priority

The Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has predicted that Internet governance will become a policy priority in the coming years, reports ITRealms.

OECD in the 2015 digital economy outlook made available to ITRealms, the organization said Internet governance now permeates countless aspects of the world economy, impacting sectors as varied as banking, retail, energy, transportation, education, publishing, media or health.

According OECD, Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) are transforming the ways social interactions and personal relationships are conducted, with fixed, mobile and broadcast networks converging, and devices and objects increasingly connected to form the Internet of Things.

The  Internet  community, the outlook showed, is  developing  a  proposal  to  transition  oversight  of  the  Internet’s  technical resources from the United States government to the global multi stakeholder community.

ITRealms gathered that in September 2015, the United Nations plans to launch the post-2015 development agenda, setting sustainable development goals, which are likely to include increased access to ICTs and the Internet to create an inclusive and global digital economy.

Equally in December 2015, ITRealms gathered, the mandate of the multi Stakeholder-led Internet Governance Forum (IGF) will come up for renewal.

Underlying these initiatives, OECD noted, is the fundamental need to preserve the openness of the Internet.

“The conception  of  the  Internet  as  an  open  platform,  where  businesses,  citizens  and  governments  can serendipitously innovate and develop applications and services, has enabled numerous innovations in the digital economy,” OECD said.

In recent years, OECD pointed out that concerns have emerged that the economic and social benefits brought by the open and decentralised architecture of the Internet and by the free flow of trans-border data may be affected, directly or indirectly, by issues such as territorial routing, local content or data storage requirements, network neutrality, universal acceptance of multilingual domain names and the creation of alternative networks.

The benefits of, and risks to an open Internet, the OECD stated in the Executive Summary, would be discussed by ministers and other high level stakeholders at the forthcoming OECD Ministerial Meeting in 2016, along with other key issues pertaining to global connectivity, the Internet of Things, demand side initiatives to foster innovation and trust in the digital economy, and ways to foster job creation and develop the skills needed to maximise the benefits of the digital economy.

Chuks Egbuna/GEE
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