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Internet Governance Forum (IGF)

Girls reading a computer
This photo is a derivative of "Busan" © 2010 Asian Development Bank CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

The IGF and the Internet Society: Best Practices Built By You

The Internet’s influence has touched people all over the globe.

In 2003 and 2005, the United Nations organized the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS). One of the most critical outcomes from this landmark summit was the creation of the Internet Governance Forum, or the "IGF". 

Each year there are global, national, and regional IGFs events happening around the world.

Every IGF offers a unique space for a an amazing range of people to share information and develop solutions on key Internet issues. It was purposefully designed not to be a decision-making body, which allows people to speak freely, on an equal footing, without limitations linked to the negotiations of formal outcomes. What comes out of the IGF, however, plays an essential role in shaping decisions taken by other groups that helps the Internet run.

The first global IGF was held in 2006 in Athens. Since then, global IGFs have been held in Brazil, India, Egypt, Lithuania, Kenya, Azerbaijan, Indonesia and Turkey. In 2015, the next global IGF will return to Brazil in João Pessoa (10-13 November 2015).

How The IGF Changed Things

After almost a decade, the IGF remains a cornerstone of international Internet and local governance with participation from over 140 countries.

The approach of the IGF is simple:

Anyone who has a stake in the future of the Internet can go and be heard. It was founded and operates on the principles of being bottom-up, transparent, and inclusive.

Without it, there would be no common ground where people who have a stake in the future of the Internet could develop local solutions with a global impact, addressing issues such as:

Best Practice Forums

One of the most unique benefits of the IGF is is you can go there to share ideas and find out what's working and what's not in other parts of the world when it comes to challenges facing the Internet where you live. In 2014 the IGF held Best Practice sessions on things like spam, online child safety, CERTS, and ways to make Internet governance more inclusive.  Get the detailed reports from the 2014 IGF Best Practice Forums on the IGF Website.

The Internet Governance Forum Where You Live

Local IGFs are focused on issues that face a city, town or country and help people to bring solutions forward to a global level.

National and regional IGFs have become so popular they've started happening all across the globe, generating conversation among everyone who wants a voice in the future of the Internet where they live.

You can join too!

Find out if a national or regional IGF is happening near you.

Support the IGF

By helping the IGF, you help contribute to a world where everyone can access and develop a connected, borderless, permission-less, limitless Internet, creating opportunity and progress for all.

However you choose to support the IGF, we are deeply grateful.

Call For A Renewal of The IGF Mandate

The initial mandate of IGF was for five years, from 2006 to 2010. Recognizing the how important the IGF is to how the Internet runs, the IGF’s mandate was renewed by the General Assembly in 2010 for a further five years until 2015.

The future of the IGF now depends on the UN’s renewal of that mandate in 2015.

The Internet Society calls upon the United Nations General Assembly to renew the mandate of the IGF.

Make A Donation

The IGF functions through support from its participants and friends. In order to continue its growth and progression, it needs to have a robust and sustainable income stream. The Internet Governance Forum Support Association (IGFSA) is a channel for additional funding from individuals, companies and foundations to keep the IGF the go-to event for everyone who is interested in the Internet and its governance.

You can become a member of the IGFSA. Donations are also welcomed.

Attend the IGF

You can take part in the next IGF and help bring solutions to some of the most critical issues facing the open Internet. The next meeting is scheduled to take place in João Pessoa, Paraíba, Brazil. Please visit the official IGF website for registration information.

Talk About Internet Issues in Your Area

Got a blog? On Twitter? Facebook? Tumblr? G+? Let the world know what they are and what you think the solution is and how the IGF can help.

Attend the IGF Where You Live

Register for a national or regional IGF near you.

Become an Internet Society Volunteer and Join a Chapter

The Internet Society is made up of members and Chapters around the world - each one working to make a difference in where they live. By becoming a member, you gain access to a network of people who can help you reach out to local policy and decision makers to and encourage them to develop solutions to Internet issues that matter to you.

Apply to Become An IGF Ambassador

Our Ambassadors are young concerned citizens who are interested in bringing solutions to some of the toughest problems facing the Internet where they live. Find out how to apply.