Side happening: Developing Internet universality indicators with UNESCO and the APC Internet indicators consortium

In 2015, UNESCO put the concept of ‘Internet Universality’ at the heart of its work to promote an Internet that works for all.  Internet universality points to four ‘fundamental norms that have been embodied in the broad evolution of the Internet to date, and which provide a comprehensive way to understand how multiple different aspects are part of a wider whole.’  These norms – known for short as the ROAM principles, are concerned with:

  • Rights (R)
  • Openness (O)
  • Accessibility (A) and
  • Multistakeholder Participation (M).

This month, UNESCO is launching a year-long programme of consultation to develop a set of Internet Universality indicators, covering these four fundamental norms and the cross-currents between them.  These indicators will help governments and other stakeholders to assess their own national Internet environments, and to promote the values associated with Internet Universality.  There will be a mix of quantitative and qualitative indicators.  Special attention will be paid to gender and to the needs and interests of children and young people. Work on the project to define Internet Universality indicators is being led for UNESCO by the Association for Progressive Communications (APC).

An online consultation on the overall principles for Internet Universality indicators will be launched at the WSIS Forum in June.  It will be followed by a consultation of draft indicators later in the year.  UNESCO and APC hope that as many stakeholders as possible will take part in these consultations.

We want to begin the consultation with a series of focus group discussions at the Stockholm Internet Forum, to be held on Tuesday the 16th of May.

Each focus group will only last for an hour so that participants are still able to participate in other events on the 16th.

There will be four slots. Please choose the one you are most interested in:

RIGHTS: 11h30-12h30

OPENNESS: 12h30-13h30

ACCESSIBILITY: 15h00-16h00


Please RSVP, indicting which session you would like to attend, to

For more information write to Anriette Esterhuysen: – or David Souter:

On behalf of the APC Internet Indicators Consortium:

Association for Progressive Communications ictD Associates Research ICT Africa LIRNEasia DIRSI

Location: Room 21 Tsodilo