Attaining information society goals not a case of business as usual

  • 17 May 2010

Addressing the 13th session of the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development (CSTD), Subramanian Ramadorai, Vice-Chairman of Tata Consultancy Services, and Chair of the ICC initiative Business Action to Support the Information Society (BASIS) said that when it comes to technology in our highly connected world it is no longer a case of “business as usual”.

“Having an innovative product, a business to back it and a market that needs it, is not always sufficient for success,” said Mr Ramadorai underscoring the importance of sound policies in creating an environment that encourages the use of technology.

“Clearly governments, academia, non-governmental organizations, business and policymakers need to work in conjunction for new ideas and technologies to be implemented and society to progress,” he said.

Established in 1992 as a commission of the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), CSTD is charged by the UN World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS)  with monitoring and assessing progress on the outcomes of the Summit, including the WSIS action lines and the Internet Governance Forum (IGF).

During the opening ceremony of the session today, Mr Ramadorai shared examples of how business worldwide and from all sectors is contributing to the attainment of WSIS goals. Mr Ramadorai said that as drivers of innovation, business was currently focused on trying to identify what interfaces the next billion Internet users would use, how they would use it and for what purposes.

Mr Ramadorai cited the IGF as a unique platform – open to all stakeholders – for frank and open discussions on Internet policy-related issues.

“The IGF is a driver of informed policymaking, helping reduce resistance and enabling open discussion among stakeholders. This leads to better decision making,” he said.

ICC/BASIS strongly supports the continuation of the IGF – with its founding principles intact – beyond its current five-year mandate, which concludes at the end of the year.

Speaking on behalf of business Mr Ramadorai concluded: “We want to continue engaging with all stakeholders to spread the benefits of the information society more widely across the world.”

The 13th session of the CSTD is taking place over 5 days at UN headquarters in Geneva and will conclude on 21 May.