Multi-stakeholder Global Governance

In 2005, WSIS defined Internet governance as: the development and application by governments, the private sector and civil society, in their respective role, of share principles , norms, rules, decision-making procedures, and programs that shape the evolution and use of the internet’. Today the internet is operated across borders and with a multi-stakeholder approach, meaning internet government is not a product of institutional hierarchy. Instead, it is a bottom-up approach where individuals and organizations from different realms have the opportunity to participate alongside each other to share ideas and develop consensus policy. It is the most optimal way for policy decision making in a global network that allows a wide range of people to impact and make decisions, to share their experiences and problems, bring in their expertise and legitimize policies. Thus, making the multistakeholder decision making process accountable, effective as well as sustainable and inclusive. Inclusiveness is the basis of legitimacy of a decision-making process, and those who are affected by a decision should have the chance to be involved in making the it.

The Internet government forum embraces the multistakeholder model, where states-including authoritarian governments- agreed to participate in policy discussions on an equal ground with all private and civil society sectors. It serves to bring people together and discuss public policy issues, exchange information and share expertise. It facilitates a common understanding on how to maximize internet opportunities and address risks and challenges that arise. Chiefly, it gives developing nations a voice and a chance to engage on debate on internet governance and to facilitate their experience in existing institutions and institutions.