Ministerial Conference for WSIS Next Month in Romania
an action plan for the information society is the goal of the Pan-European
Ministerial Conference for the World Summit on the Information Society
(WSIS) next month in Bucharest, Romania. A UNESCO conference in
Germany earlier this year already made far reaching recommendations
for strengthening Europe's position in the WSIS process.
Bucharest Conference will gather from 7 to 9 November 2002, representatives
of governments, international organizations, private sector and
civil society. Focussing on the European region, it will keep balance
between regional specificity and global issues say the organizers.
Bucharest Conference should be an opportunity for presenting national
strategies but also to develop a platform for dialogue at European
level on a wide range of topics such as e-government, building partnerships
or the conditions of a fruitful dialogue among governments, business
sector and civil society. The meeting is expected to prepare reports
and proposals on the thematic debates of the first WSIS meeting
in Geneva, Switzerland, in December 2003.
of the UNESCO European WSIS Pre-Conference that was held from 26
to 27 June 2002 in Mainz, Germany, said that the evolution of the
information society should be embedded in the concept of sustainable
development. In their final declaration, the 150 participants from
48 European countries declared in Mainz that ensuring access to
information and communication resources for all, at any time, from
everywhere, and under fair conditions is one of the main challenges
for the information society.
success of WSIS will highly depend on agreements on common principles
that are to guide the construction of the information society, particularly
under the perspective of the ongoing globalization of information
and communication networks and services, the experts stated in Mainz.
They also recognized the heterogeneous interests, which influence
the development of the information society, and the diversity of
the underlying cultures and values of the different societies involved.
Europe Region with its long tradition of recognizing and balancing
the interests of different cultures and languages and with its network
of National Commissions for UNESCO can contribute to responding
to the global challenge of bridging the digital divide through taking
positive actions to create opportunities for the "information
poor" said the participants. They also stressed the special
role that UNESCO should play in the WSIS preparation process, particularly
as regards to the content aspect.
Bucharest, UNDP's Infodev Conference Scholarship Fund will finance
participation of participants for a total amount of US$ 25,000 .
This initiative is aimed at allowing the participation of all key
actors of Eastern European Countries in the Bucharest Conference.