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Community Projects 1 June 2015

Looking ahead to an action packed week at the AIS

By Dawit BekeleRegional Vice President - Africa

The Internet Society, led by its President and CEO Kathy Brown is in Tunis at the third African Internet Summit, (AIS) – by far the premier ICT event in the African continent bringing together a broad selection of people who are driving the Internet’s future around the world.

Over the past years, the Internet Society has not only been one of the prominent sponsors of the AIS, but has also been supporting the different workshops and tutorial sessions around the event through its technical experts and contributions to the initiatives and policies that promote the overall development and increased access of the Internet in Africa.

Right now, Internet penetration in Africa is at 20%, a critical threshold to start to reap the economic benefits of broadband.

As the number of people using the Internet in Africa grows, it is time to illuminate the opportunities the Internet can bring to the continent. Building on the presence of the Internet technical community, different African government officials and regulators, business leaders and trade actors, the Internet Society has organized a series of events around this week’s AIS, which will echo the strong will of the organization to promote global, regional and local policy environments that enable the continued evolution of an open internet for current and future users around the world and especially in Africa.

The presence of the Internet Society at this year’s AIS is marked by the special presence of Kathy Brown who will be attending the different AIS sessions. She will be addressing the AFNOG plenary where she will be speaking about Internet Access as the key to creating knowledge-based economies and societies in Africa as well as the importance of the role that Africa is already playing as part of the global Internet community in shaping the future of the global Internet.

Here’s what we have scheduled over the coming days:

Women Leaders in Internet Governance

When: June 1 from 10 AM to 11:30 AM (UTC +1)

Where: Olivero Restaurant, Regency Hotel 

Watch It On LiveStream: http://livestream.com/internetsociety/WomeninIG 

The Women Leaders in Internet Governance workshop will gather women leaders to discuss key Internet governance issues relevant to the region such as local content development, security, access and connectivity issues.

Business Round Table

When: June 1 from 1:30 PM to 4 PM

Where: Byrsa Hall, Regency Hotel 

This event will be followed by a Business Roundtable meeting under the theme “The Internet in Africa: 21st Century opportunities and challenges for business”. The Internet Society has invited African business representatives to discuss the economic opportunities for business in Africa offered by the Internet.

Keynote speech: Ms. Kathryn Brown, Internet Society President and CEO

When: 2 June, from 9 AM to 10:30 AM (UTC +1)

Where: Plenary room, AIS venue, Regency Hotel

Watch It On LiveStream: http://www.internetsummitafrica.org/en/remote-participation

The Internet Society’s President and CEO, Kathy Brown, is scheduled to give a keynote speech at the African Network Operators Group (AFNOG) plenary. She’ll be speaking about the entrepreneurial opportunities opening up to African innovators as Internet deployment grows.

Tunisia Chapter Meeting 

When: June 2 from 6 to 8 pm

Where:  Byrsa Hall, Regency Hotel 

Kathy Brown will also meet with the leaders and members of the Tunisian Chapter to acknowledge the importance of the chapters’ role at this important moment in the history of Internet.  Bilateral meetings with the Minister of ICT and Digital Economy of Tunisia and representatives of partner African organizations known as AF* are also on Kathy’s agenda of the AIS week where she will be discussing the new direction of ISOC in the world and in Africa while encouraging the formation of policies and an enabling environment for greater Internet access across the continent.


We will also be using AIS and our presence in Tunisia to make some announcements and to launch some fresh content and research regarding the status and growth of the Internet in Africa. Watch this space for more details.

Will you be there in person? Visit us at our booth and post a picture with us on Instagram!  Just use the hashtag #ISOCatAIS

I’m looking forward to the discussion this week.

Dawit Bekele

Disclaimer: Viewpoints expressed in this post are those of the author and may or may not reflect official Internet Society positions.

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