[Telecentres] civil society participation in WSIS
acarvin at edc.org
Thu Sep 23 10:25:26 BST 2004
Below is a more official explanation about how all of this works,
written by Seán Ó Siochrú, Wolfgang Kleinwaechter and Renata Bloem of
the CS bureau.... -ac
>> Overview of Civil Society Elements and how to get involved
The following describes in summary the basic structures that civil
society has developed over the preparatory process of the WSIS.
1. A key principle underlying the structures of civil society is that
there must be multiple avenues and means for participation, and that all
civil society entities can select the nature, level and extent of
participation according to their needs and interests.
2. Civil Society can constitute itself into a Plenary (CSP) at every
official convening of the WSIS process, such as Regional Conferences,
PrepComs, Intersessional meetings and Summits. The CSP is open to the
participation of all civil society participants. When convened, it is
the ultimate civil society authority in the WSIS process, in relation to
the mandate and scope of the specific event. At PrepCom II, CSP endorsed
the existence and terms of the Civil Society Content & Themes Group and
the Civil Society Bureau.
3. The Civil Society Content and Themes Group (CS C&T) coordinates the
work of numerous self-constituting civil society Caucuses, Working
Groups and other content related entities. It is charged with
facilitating agreement on and taking decisions on content-related
issues, while respecting the domain expertise and competence of Caucuses
and Content Groups. It reports regularly to the CS plenary on decisions
4. The Civil Society Bureau (CSB) functions as an interlinkage between
civil society participants and the intergovernmental Bureau and process,
with regard to operational and logistical needs, procedures and
interactions. It does not concern itself with content-related issues.
The Bureau is constituted by 21 'family nodal points', that enable any
civil society entity to find a 'home', and it enhances interaction
between all sections of civil society and between civil society and
others. The Civil Society Division of the WSIS Secretariat provides the
Secretariat for the CS Bureau. The Bureau reports regularly to the CS
Plenary on decisions taken.
5. The Civil Society Division of the WSIS Secretariat (CSD) supports the
activities of all civil society participants and entities in the Summit,
including the above. It may also provide support to participants who
chose not to associate with some or all of the above entities, in a
manner that respects the functions and authority of the above.
6. The CSP approved a Virtual CS Plenary group as an electronic forum
between physical meetings of the CSP, to promote debate and greater
transparency in the organisation of civil society during the Summit
preparatory process, including between the various entities above. It is
not a decision making entity, but decisions of other entities will be
circulated there. It is open to all accredited entities, to registered
bodies at WSIS meetings, and to all civil society entities with an
active interest in the WSIS.
7. All the above entities will take action to ensure that, within the
available resources, key decisions are taken only after consideration of
the issues in the working languages of the Summit: English, French and
EDC Center for Media & Community
acarvin @ edc . org
More information about the telecentres