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Connecting the world

One of the earliest priorities of the Internet Society was to increase the reach of the Internet. That priority continues today because the Internet is for everyone. Every last person on the planet is part of “everyone”, and we won’t rest until each person has the option of choosing to be connected.

We promote policies and build communities to sustain an Internet that is a universally accessible platform for innovation, creativity, and economic opportunity. We advance the development and application of Internet infrastructure, technologies, and open standards to enable an open Internet for all.

The most prominent part of our investment in connecting people in 2019 remains our campaign in favor of community networks. In 2018, we undertook successful efforts to support the creation of community networks. In the coming year we will shift our work by establishing enduring technical, policy, and regulatory frameworks that will help communities of the world connect themselves. We need the whole Internet community to complete this work.

The culmination of this effort will be a global summit for this community by the end of 2019, hosted by the Internet Society. The summit will be the expression of a roadmap to advance community networks, and be a foundation for a community-driven organization of community networks to implement the roadmap.

Community Networks

Community Networks

IXPs and Interconnection

Additional priorities in 2019 for our Connecting the World focus area will include continuing to strengthen interconnection and peering ecosystems around the world:

Supporting and developing  Internet exchange points (IXPs)

Success will be measured by observing the ongoing viability of IXPs where we have been involved, as our involvement declines. Our goal is that 80% of African Internet traffic remains in Africa.

Collaborating with Facebook in Africa

We will provide equipment, build capacity, and promote best practices to scale the technical operations of at least 10 IXPs in Africa. We will also support the 2019 edition of the African Peering and Interconnection Forum (AfPIF) with a goal of attracting 20% more participants than in 2018.

Training and skills development

Success will be measured by the incorporation of trainees into direct network operations, and also by the use of previously-trained people as instructors in subsequent training sessions.

Continued support of the following forums, including ensuring evolution towards becoming true community events:

African Peering and Interconnection Forum (AfPIF)

Since 2010 the Internet Society has supported AfPIF, recognized as one of the most important Internet events in Africa.

It addresses the key interconnection, peering, and traffic exchange opportunities and challenges on the continent and provides participants with global and regional insights for maximising opportunities that will help grow Internet infrastructure and services in Africa.

Visit our AfPIF website

Indigenous Community Summit (ICS)

The Indigenous Connectivity Summit is a unique event that focuses on ensuring Indigenous communities can connect themselves to fast, affordable and sustainable Internet.

Including Indigenous voices in the decisions and solutions that shape the Internet is a critical part of closing the connectivity gap in rural and remote communities throughout North America.

Read about 2018 Indigenous Summit

Emerging Access Initiative

Because our efforts on community networks are maturing, 2019 will also be a period of research for viable future efforts. For example, a focus on connecting schools and children, increasing accessibility, or addressing the connectivity needs of displaced people might provide another fruitful approach to promoting connectivity. During 2019 we will conduct research, collect data, and run pilot activities in order to properly assess different options and alternatives that will inform our planning for 2020 and beyond.

Access News

Community Networks: In Tanzania, Helping to Close the Connectivity Gap
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Connecting the World 22 January 2019

Community Networks: In Tanzania, Helping to Close the Connectivity Gap

Community established networks, also referred to as “community networks” (CNs), have existed for many years and provide a sustainable...

Update on Latin America and Caribbean Workshop for Chapter Leaders
Update on Latin America and Caribbean Workshop for Chapter Leaders Thumbnail
Connecting the World 15 January 2019

Update on Latin America and Caribbean Workshop for Chapter Leaders

In July 2018, the Internet Society’s Latin America and Caribbean Bureau held another edition of the Workshop for Chapter Leaders....

South Africa Gauteng Community Outreach: Why Community Networks Matter
South Africa Gauteng Community Outreach: Why Community Networks Matter Thumbnail
Connecting the World 8 January 2019

South Africa Gauteng Community Outreach: Why Community Networks Matter

On 14 December 2018, the young and old people of Mamaila Tribal Authority convened at Wholesale Village in the...

Investing in Indigenous Connectivity Is an Investment in Our Future Online
Investing in Indigenous Connectivity Is an Investment in Our Future Online Thumbnail
Connecting the World 7 January 2019

Investing in Indigenous Connectivity Is an Investment in Our Future Online

There’s one New Year’s resolution we can bank on to improve the health and livelihoods of millions of people...

Emerging Technologies: Bridging the Digital Gap in Africa
Emerging Technologies: Bridging the Digital Gap in Africa Thumbnail
Connecting the World 3 January 2019

Emerging Technologies: Bridging the Digital Gap in Africa

With all the excitement about the role of technology in contributing to social change and improved development outcomes across...

Calculating The Cost Of Switching It Off
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In the News 30 December 2018

Calculating The Cost Of Switching It Off

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