ICC advances sustainable development, secure networks and digital inclusion at IGF

  • 3 December 2019

The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) united with participants at the Internet Governance Forum (IGF) to pursue meaningful policies aimed at improving digital access for all.

At this year’s IGF, ICC brought together business, government, civil society and the technical community to discuss Internet governance through a series of workshops, briefings, and high-level plenary sessions. ICC Secretary General John W.H. Denton AO’s launched a new ICC campaign to make technology work for all and joined ICC members and representatives on the ground in Berlin to advocate for more sustainable, secure and inclusive digital policies and a continued multistakeholder approach to Internet governance. Read Mr Denton’s LinkedIn post here.

Data for sustainable development

In recognition of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), ICC believes that digital technology helps enable social and economic development and innovation around the world. ICC mobilised business leaders to participate in the IGF main session on Achieving the SDGs in the Digital Age, moderated by Doreen Bogdan-Martin, Director of the International Telecommunication Union Telecommunication Development Bureau. Panellists discussed the need to collaborate across industries to ensure the effective implementation of the SDGs.

Sophie Peresson, Director, ICC Innovation for All, and John Denton, ICC Secretary General, lead workshop at IGF.

Most notably, Luis Neves, CEO, Global e-Sustainability Initiative (GeSi) emphasised the role of business in advancing the SDGs, stating: “We need to ensure trust and responsibilities, so companies take responsibility to ensure trust with people.” On the margins of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), ICC and GeSi signed a memorandum of understanding to promote sustainable practices among businesses. ICC is a proud sponsor of GeSi’s landmark report, Digital with Purpose: Delivering a SMARTer 2030, which was made available to participating delegates at ICC’s booth throughout IGF.

Secure networks

ICC firmly believes in protecting all elements within the digital ecosystem to sustain social and economic development and ensure a safe digital environment for all. To underline this commitment, ICC announced a newly formed partnership with the Cyber Readiness Institute, an organisation that provides cyber toolkits to small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to improve the security of global supply chains. During IGF Day 3, Jennifer Brant, Director for Partner Engagement, Cyber Readiness Institute, spoke to delegates at ICC’s morning business briefing, as well as at ICC’s booth throughout the day on the importance of securing their global supply chains from cyber attacks.


ICC believes that a truly multistakeholder approach is necessary to advancing the benefits of the Internet and digital technology. Regardless of national origin, age or gender, all communities around the world deserve to participate in the Internet governance process. In line with this objective, ICC welcomed participants from this year’s Youth IGF to learn more about ICC’s make technology work for all campaign and global network of businesses. Conversations on digital inclusion continued as part of ICC’s participation in the IGF main session on Governance Challenges in the Digital Age: Finding New Tools for Policy-Making. Sophie Peresson, Director of ICC’s Innovation for All hub, joined colleagues from Africa Cybersecurity and Digital Rights Organisation, Facebook, Global Partners Digital, Internet Society, Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), Partnership on AI to Benefit People and Society, the United Nations (UN), to exchange ideas on policy-making frameworks related to digital technologies.

During her opening remarks, Ms Peresson reiterated ICC’s longstanding commitment to the multistakeholder process on Internet governance, stating: “Work on improving multistakeholder participation should involve inputs from multiple stakeholders.  A shared understanding of the issues and desire to collaborate to address the issues, the existence of trust amongst stakeholders.”

Earlier in the week, ICC hosted an interactive workshop on Cross-border data: connecting SMEs in the global supply chain, which analysed the benefits of data for SMEs, including increased efficiency and greater access to outside markets.

Looking to the next edition

At the closing session of this year’s IGF, ICC called upon stakeholders to continue to engage in fruitful discussions and debates on the future of Internet governance. On behalf of ICC, Ms Peresson encouraged IGF organisers to carry on the legacy of the multistakeholder approach at the 15th edition of the IGF next year. “Please reach out to young and less young entrepreneurs, start-ups, and SMEs. They have a lot to contribute and can forge solutions for the future,” she said. Ms Peresson also highlighted ICC’s make technology work for all campaign, which was launched earlier in the week by ICC Secretary General John W.H. Denton AO.

ICC’s team on the ground at this year’s IGF.

As the convenor of global business, ICC is looking forward to the next edition of the IGF in Katowice, Poland on 2-6 November 2020 and to working alongside all stakeholders in the lead-up to the annual event to provide an inclusive and constructive space for discussions on Internet governance.

Read more about ICC’s participation at the opening of this year’s forum.

Discover ICC’s make technology work for all campaign.