Considerations for Workshop Proposers

{tab Considerations for Workshop Proposers}

The Internet Governance Forum (IGF) is a multistakeholder platform for discussion on Internet Governance issues. It is open to all to participate. The IGF2015 is scheduled to take place in João Pessoa, Brazil, on 10-13 November 2015

The programme of the IGF is built primarily on workshop sessions organised by the multistakeholder Internet community. The call for proposals is now open, until 30 March 2015. (Please note that proposals submitted after this date cannot be accepted).

Workshop Submission Form

This year, the MAG introduced a few important changes to the workshop proposal process. These changes are included in the below list of 10 things for an IGF workshop proposer to consider. All workshop proposers should read these, in addition to three other helpful documents - 2015 Workshop Proposal Guidelines, Outline of Session Formats, and MAG Workshop Review and Evaluation Process - before starting work on an IGF workshop session proposal.

10 things for IGF workshop proposers to consider

1.    Use a new session format. The MAG will be looking for proposals that use new and innovative formats to encourage greater diversity and participant interaction. Break-out group discussions, debates, roundtables, birds of a feather, and flash sessions are all options this year for workshop sessions. You could also propose your own format for the session. These six formats exist in addition to the traditional panel format, a proposal for which requires a background paper (see number 7).

2.    Submit a proposal even if you have never been to an IGF. During the evaluation process, preference is given to first-time workshop proposers, in an effort to welcome new voices to the IGF discussions.

3.    Attention to proposers from developing countries, including least developed countries: Preference is given to proposals from your areas, to encourage greater diversity at the IGF event.

4.    Be clear about why the session should happen and how it will happen. It is important to be clear on what Internet Governance issue the session will address and how this will be discussed.

        o    Why: In your proposal, give a concise description of the Internet Governance issue that your session is designed to explore.

        o    How: Then explain how the issue will be addressed through the session format. For example, if the session is a debate on the “right to be forgotten” explain what aspect of the issue will be discussed, the major discussions points, and the perspectives to be covered. In addition, provide the agenda of the debate, including timings for debaters, moderator and audience.

5.    Choose the length of your session wisely. Workshop Sessions are either 30, 60 or 90 minutes long. Pick the amount of time that is best for your session. For example, if you wish to give a brief presentation on a topic, the 30 minute Flash Session would be a good duration and format. Panel sessions require longer times. Note that different formats have different durations. Check the formats here.

6.    Plan for remote participation: The IGF is a global discussion, and those who are not “on location” also need to be able to participate. This year the MAG will pay special attention to the proposer’s plan for remote participation, so ensure that you have considered how to accommodate remote participants and that you have nominated a remote moderator in your proposal. You could even check to see if a “remote participation hub” is being planned by members of the Internet community in your locality or region, and work with them.

7.    Background papers are required for panel sessions, optional for others. The MAG has introduced a requirement this year for proposals in the panel format. Panel session proposals must include a background paper. Check the guidelines for this paper here.

8.    Assign a rapporteur. All workshop sessions this year require a rapporteur to produce a summary report of the session (based on this template). Reports must be submitted to the IGF Secretariat no later than two weeks following the IGF event. If a report is not submitted, then the workshop proposer will not be allowed to submit a workshop proposal for the next IGF.

9.    Participants/Speakers need not be confirmed in the proposal. The MAG understands that it is difficult to ask workshop session participants to confirm their attendance to the IGF at the proposal stage, so confirmation is not required. What is more important is a description of the part each participant/speaker is meant to play in the workshop (e.g. one speaker will share technical expertise on the issue, while another speaker will address the economic considerations of the issue).

10.    Reach out if you need help. Please contact the secretariat of the IGF at <igf[at]> if you have questions about submitting a proposal.

Finally, remember that you don’t need to organize or participate in a workshop to participate in the IGF. All stakeholders are welcome to join the meeting in Brazil. All relevant information can be found at .


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The following unofficial translations have been made available by MAG Members.

The IGF Secretariat kindly reminds all interested parties that all workshop proposals shall be presented in English. Proposals presented in other languages will not be considered.

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