The 13th Annual Meeting of the Internet Governance Forum (IGF 2018) took place in Paris, France, from 12 to 14 November 2018.
During the course of three days, more than 3000 delegates participated in 171 sessions. Paris welcomed participants from 143 different countries and 62% of these were first time comers and 43% of them were female.
Approximately 1400 people participated online. 101 different countries were represented online, with the majority coming from France, United States, Brazil, Nigeria, United Kingdom, India, Iran, Bangladesh, and Germany.
In addition to the Opening and Closing Sessions, the IGF 2018 programme featured 8 main/special sessions; 71 workshops; 27 open forums; 5 individual best practice forum (BPF) sessions; 15 individual dynamic coalition (DC) sessions; 5 individual national, regional, and youth (NRIs) collaborative sessions; 14 sessions classified as “other”; and 24 lightning sessions; for a total of 171 sessions in the overall programme. The reduced number of sessions in the programme compared to previous years is the result of the MAG’s new ‘programme shaping approach’, which aimed at having more concrete, focused discussions, and fewer parallel or duplicate sessions, with a clear thematic orientation.
The Cybersecurity, Trust and Privacy theme had the highest number of sessions (28), followed by Development Innovation and Economic Issues (26), Human Rights, Gender and Youth (26), Digital Inclusion and Accessibility (22), Evolution of Internet Governance (18), Emerging Technologies (15), Media and Content (10), and Technical and Operational Issues (9). There were also 17 other sessions that did not fall under any of the main themes listed above.
Organizations from five different continents joined the IGF Village with 56 booths to share their work missions with the Forum’s participants. The Village included representatives from all four key stakeholder groups: governments, private sector, civil society and technical community.
There were also 35 remote hubs organised around the world. These included all regions, with 42% from Africa and 23% from both the Latin America and Caribbean and the Asia-Pacific regions, with an active online presence, video-sharing and live-comments. There were more than one hub in Argentine, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, India, Nigeria and Yemen.
There were 111 National, Regional, and Youth IGFs (NRIs) present at the IGF 2018 compared to 97 NRIs in the 2017 annual meeting. Since the 2017 annual meeting of the IGF, 9 more countries have established IGF processes, increasing the number of national IGFs to 80, and 5 communities established Youth IGFs, increasing the total number to 14. The total number of regional NRIs did not change during this time.
Of the 111 NRIs, 48 were physically present at the Paris IGF and 36 actively participated at the NRIs 3/10 main session on the evolution of Internet governance, with a focus on the multistakeholder approach. 32 different NRIs were involved in preparing 5 NRIs collaborative sessions during the IGF 2018 which focused on access, cybersecurity, digital economy, emerging technologies and fake news.
The IGF 2018 hosted more than a 100 bilateral meetings and was followed by more than 80 journalists and covered by major global media outlets.
Social media activity is estimated to have reached more than 10,000,000 people, with around 52% of female activity of more than 1000 contributors and about a 90% of rather positive sentiment.