- Latest publication: Lifting the Barriers to Internet Development in Africa
- Cisco Signs Three-Year Commitment to Internet Society Programs
What do we mean by Internet Development?
Internet development is about people. Shared knowledge and collaborative relationships are key drivers of successful Internet growth, not technology alone.
The Internet Society works to foster growth and access to technology by bringing information, training, and partnerships to people and communities across the globe.
We amplify our efforts by concentrating on building projects focused on sustainable human, technical, and governance infrastructures. We believe these three fundamental pillars are the key to sucessful Internet development initiatives that benefits local culture, empowers users and generate economic growth.
We call this smart development.
Smart development is about:
- Human Infrastructure
Trained, educated and engaged people who create, sustain, and maintain networks at a local and regional level. People who connect with each other and form “trusted human networks” that build content and innovate around the world. This is what allows the Internet to grow and become a platform for economic and community development.
- Technical infrastructure
The networks, computers, protocols (“standards”), Internet exchange points, and other technology that the Internet runs “on”, and through which the unconnected become connected. Where innovation drives technology and economic growth.
- Governance Infrastructure
The frameworks, guidelines and rules that promote Internet use, innovation and expansion are critical to allow the Internet to fulfill Its’ potential as a channel for human expression and development. This can be as simple as committed and organized people who manage an IXP, to robust stakeholder commitment to building out the Internet and discussing
Why is this important?
The Internet works because its governance is distributed, open, inclusive, collaborative, and transparent. We work to keep it this way.
Smart Development aims to strengthen this idea. It represents a positive, inclusive, and proven alternative to policies that can stifle innovation and network development. It offers an apolitical, non-interventionist method of building Internet connectivity and engagement that is accessible anywhere in the world and offers proven, cost-effective and replicable results.
We make this happen by:
- Participating in conferences and technical workshops
- Supporting local and regional internet Organizations
- Producing research and publications
- Funding grants for Internet Experts in developing countries
And we focus our work on selected key issues:
- Country-code Top-Level Domains (ccTLD's)
- Interconnection and Trafic Exchange (ITE)
- Internet Exchange Points (IXP's)