The politics of the World Summit on the Information Society

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Promoted by the United Nations organisations, the World Summit on the Information Society was initiated to interrogate the global issues and challenges resulting from the widespread use of ICTs and the growth of the information economy. Its first phase, held in Geneva in December 2003, brought together 16,000 delegates and was directed towards the adoption of a Declaration and an Action Plan. The second phase, planned for Tunis in November 2005, is focussed on implementing the Action Plan. Reflecting the role of libraries and information services at the heart of the information society, the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), strove to highlight the sector's concerns including freedom of access to information and the digital divide. Alex will discuss the robust geopolitical discourse and undercurrents of the Summit and the ways in which IFLA sought to influence the outcomes of the Geneva phase and its approach to the Tunis phase.
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