[IGFmaglist] Main session update and request for inputs.

Miller, Cheryl A cheryl.miller at verizon.com
Fri Mar 6 11:34:46 EST 2015


Dear Subi and Flavio,

Thanks so much for posting the discussions, it is great to be able to easily reference them.  Please find my comments/ inputs below. Separately, once I have more guidance from the Main Session working group, I will also propose a main session that I think could be a strong one for this year.

My Comments:

1.            Proposed - Each Main session to be led/facilitated by 1 new and 1 old MAG member.  Your thoughts?
Good idea. We should seek volunteers. As a first time new member of the MAG, I am happy to facilitate a main session and would be happy to work either with a new or old MAG member from either civil society or government, etc.

2.            A speaker may not be allowed to speak on more than shall we say TWO main sessions? Your thoughts?
(a)          Yes.  That is certainly a good idea. There should be a cap of 2 main sessions, but preferably 1, unless it is completely unavoidable.
(b)          MAG members to disclose that they are nominated / recommending speakers to which sessions.
Yes. MAG members should certainly disclose their recommendations. In any event, the facilitators are also free to do so.
(c)           Avoid conflict of interest
I am not clear on how this can be done, if it relates to recommending speakers from one’s own stakeholder group. In fact it could be incumbent upon of stakeholders to recommend speakers from within their stakeholder groups that they think would be a good fit, in addition to nominees from other stakeholders, if needed.  If “conflict of interest” is intended to mean something else, then more details on this would be helpful.   However, I think stakeholders are perfectly within their rights, in fact required, to recommend speakers / moderators from within their stakeholder group.
(d)          The same set of speakers to not be recommended for each main session panel
This is an excellent suggestion.  In the event a MAG member does recommend the same speaker to more than 1 session organizer, then they must let both session organizers know about such a recommendation.

3.            To encourage diversity.  All main session organizers
(a)          The panelists pool to make use of by all session leads. It throws up some very good names.
This is my first time on the MAG, but I think as the names come in, a pool will be formed. We should avoid making a “panelist pool” a precondition, I think.  However, it seems one will likely be formed in each case, after the first open call is given.
(b)          Attempt to have a young person on each main session/panel
This is a great idea.  If for some reason it cannot be accommodated or one is not available then moderators must ensure to the extent possible that “designated young speakers” can make interventions from the floor.  Their participation is certainly important and should be facilitated.
(c)           Ask different stakeholder groups to recommend names.
Yes. Certainly.  Stakeholders should preferably recommend names from their stakeholder groups. They may also make recommendations from other groups, in case cross stakeholder speakers are found wanting. In some cases where governments are not very active in providing speakers, especially from developing countries, other stakeholders such as business, civil society and academia from developing countries can provide good recommendations for government speakers. So primarily, stakeholders should recommend names from within their groups and, if requested / need arises, from other stakeholder groups.
(d)          Attempt for gender balance and expertise and new voice
Yes to all. Speakers should show balance with regards to gender, expertise, new voice, stakeholder groups and regional representation if possible. In all 4 areas where possible.
4.            To retain Policy questions which each session will hope to address and also mention clearly which sub theme of the IGF the session if at all relates with
Yes certainly.  This I suppose has been a practice in the past as well. However, it may not always be possible to link the main session to a specific subtheme. At times the main sessions can be broader, encompassing more than one theme with closer linkages to the overarching IGF theme for the year.

5.            An ideal number of main sessions.
I think we learned from last year that there was a problem of plenty.
Also do we retain some empty slots as suggested by the chair, and with good reason.
Last year, it seems there were 3 main sessions which got extended to 4 when net neutrality was added, after the NETmundial outcome document came into being in April 2014. Perhaps it would be good to keep the main sessions to 3, especially if they are the usual 3 hour slots. If new, innovative 1 ½ hour slots can be drawn, then perhaps it may be possible to have up to 4 main sessions. Some similar recommendations were presented by MAG members in December.  Also there is the question of whether main sessions should be treated as plenaries as that will affect the number of workshops that can be held.

6.            Enhancing interactivity. This is important for flagging the inclusion of not just talking heads and experts on the panel but also including and actively seeking engagement of in room and online participants. Good bye "audience".Your thoughts?
In some sessions- a dialogue and a conversation throughout the session including a roving mic with a microphone, four standing microphones seemed to work, instead of keeping all the questions till the end.

Agreed. The recommendations of the Working Group on Remote Participation led by Ginger Paque must be included, as guidelines for main sessions. In line with Avri’s representation at the December MAG meeting, we should always refer to the participants in the room as “participants” or “delegates”. Interventions should be invited from the “room or floor” and not from the “audience”.
Conversation throughout the session including roving mikes, etc., seems like a good model. Standing, energetic moderators walking around the room is much better than those sitting with panelists. This experiment seems to have yielded good results at the Istanbul IGF 2014.

7.            We have received some extremely concrete inputs but this section can still do with more insights.
Thoughts on making the session more valuable for each participant.
This goes to the design of the main session. If a panel discussion is being suggested then a u-table format such as the one used in Istanbul would work. We can also attempt large round table discussions similar to the format of the surveillance discussion during Bali IGF 2013.  In both cases however, we need to limit main speakers, so that we can enhance online and in-room participation. At the same time, I think we need to ensure that some senior, specially invited government ministers / officers are allowed a few additional minutes, since they are used to a certain style of presentation and delivery. These interventions should be exceptions and well managed by moderators.

8.            Publicity.
Retention of the app. colours , dots
A dedicated page on the Main Site
Integration on social media
micro cards with registration like all special events/ Gala etc. of the host country. each main session to have one too.
#hashtags
These are all good ideas. The Host may also be requested for dedicated spaces to put up session details / posters, etc. – allowing for more information to flow at the event.

9.            Feedback/Suggestions-
Should be done onsite? While the session is on?
OR a form to be floated to everyone who came

I think this can be done onsite or via a form.  Attempting it while in the actual session may not work since there is insufficient time to have “suggestion readouts” during the main session and it may distract delegates from focusing on the actual discussion. I think the best assessment would be possible at the conclusion of the entire session and preferably onsite, which captures the immediate impression.

10.          Report
two reports
1. by the end of the day on which the main session takes place for the Chair's summary
2. A more substantive follow up report with a way forward and insights

Yes. 2 reports are certainly necessary.  The first report is also required, in case each session needs to get a 5-minute readout at the “Taking Stock Looking Forward” session, usually held on the last day. So, the short report could have 2 uses.

11.          Duration
To fullfil the objectives of the Main sessions and recognise parameters of gender and geographic diversity of speakers and retaining sufficient time for engagement / interaction it is currently proposed that we retain the 3 hr. slot for mains by MAG members.
This has varied in the past for Orientation and Capacity building which worked with 1.5 hr slots last year
Thoughts welcome.

I don’t think there should be any hard and fast rule on timing.  In Istanbul, we tried both 3 hour and shorter sessions.  Maybe it would be best to leave it to the co-facilitators and volunteers to recommend the time?  I think it may differ depending on the subject, context, format, participants, et cet, which are best decided by facilitators and volunteers.

I think it’s a good idea to keep 3 options of 180 minutes, 120 minutes and 90 minutes.

12.          Innovation in Format
Good idea. In addition to panel discussions, we should consider roundtables and probably debates. Let’s invite these formats from the facilitators and volunteers of main sessions.

Two additional inputs
13.          Criteria for selection of main session:  I am guessing we will be drawing up specific criteria for selecting topics based on the first call that you had placed, after the December MAG meeting.  Are additional inputs required?  Please advise?

14.          Moderators: It would be great if we could have clarity on the role of moderators. It’s my understanding that there was some confusion about who could moderate, including from within the MAG, etc.

I would recommend that we pick the best moderators based on their skills to moderate, in addition to energy, enthusiasm and straight subject matter knowledge. We should avoid picking moderators who are excellent subject matter experts but lack the skill for moderating effectively, including by limiting speakers to within the allocated time and ensuring substantive participation from the floor, by ensuring the best use of time and resources. Keeping the discussions moving and managing time is really important.

Again, as I believe was agreed last year, each MAG member should be allowed to participate in a maximum of 1 main session, either as a speaker or a moderator, and a maximum of 3 workshops (If I am wrong on this please correct me, but this is my understanding).

Thanks so much for posting the above, and please let me know if further inputs are required, and how main sessions might be suggested.  Have a great weekend!


From: Igfmaglist [mailto:igfmaglist-bounces at intgovforum.org] On Behalf Of Subi Chaturvedi
Sent: Tuesday, March 03, 2015 8:49 AM
To: MAG List IGF
Subject: [IGFmaglist] Main session update and request for inputs.

Dear all,

Trust you've been well. Congratulations to all the colleagues you've been doing great work.

And thank you all for your inputs.

It will soon be time for us to start work on the Main Sessions. We recognise the extensive and detailed  contributions from each of you.

Do please let me know if you have any further insights on the following issues, which could do with some more inputs.

1.Proposed - Each Main session to be led/facilitated by 1 new and 1 old MAG member. Your thoughts?
2. Fiona raised an important concern on the need to avoid repetition of speakers on Panels.
One thought is a mandatory and/or voluntary ceiling on the speakers. we do this on a first come basis. A speaker may not be allowed to speak on more than shall we say TWO main sessions? your thought>
(b) MAG members to disclose that they are nominated / recommending speakers to which sessions.
(c) Avoid conflict of interest
(d) The same set of speakers to not be recommended for each main session panel

3. To encourage diversity.
All main session organisers

(a)The panelists pool to made use of by all session leads. It throws up some very good names.
(b) Attempt to have a young person on each main session/panel
(c) Ask different stakeholder groups to recommend names.
(d) Attempt for gender balance and expertise and new voice

More ideas?

4. To retain Policy questions which each session will hope to address and also mention clearly which sub theme of the IGF the session if at all relates with

5. An ideal number of main sessions.
We learnt from last year that there was a problem of plenty.
Also do we retain some empty slots as suggested by the chair, and with good reason.

6. Enhancing interactivity. This is important for flagging the inclusion of not just  talking heads and experts on the panel but also including and actively seeking engagement of in room and online participants. Good bye "audience".

Your thoughts?
In some sessions- a dialogue and a conversation through out the session including a roving mic with a microphone , four standing microphones seemed to work, instead of keeping all the questions till the end.


7. We have received some extremely concrete inputs but this section can still do with more insights.
Thoughts on making the session more valuable for each participant.

8. Publicity.
Retention of the app. colours , dots
A dedicated page on the Main Site
Integration on social media
micro cards with registration like all special events/ Gala etc. of the host country. each main session to have one too.
#hashtags

9.Feedback/Suggestions-

Should be done onsite? While the session is on?
OR a form to be floated to everyone who came

10.Report

two reports
1. by the end of the day on which the main session takes place for the Chair's summary
2. A more substantive follow up report with a way forward and insights


11. Duration

To fullfil the objectives of the Main sessions and recognise parameters of gender and geographic diversity of speakers and retaining sufficient time for engagement / interaction it is currently proposed that we retain the 3 hr. slot for mains by MAG members.

This has varied in the past for Orientation and Capacity building which worked with 1.5 hr slots last year
Thoughts welcome.



12. Innovation in Format


Do send us your comments before E.O.D. 10th March




regards

Subi Chaturvedi and Flávio Rech Wagner


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