Summary of Training II: Access & Empowerment

Training II: Access and Empowerment was held on 14 January 2020. We are honoured to have two guest speakers on our webinar this time. It was an invaluable experience to have an insightful exchange on the topic with our speakers Naveed Haq (Regional Development Manager, Asia-Pacific at Internet Society) and Maureen Hilyard (Chair of At-Large Advisory Committee at ICANN).

Two members from working group #2: Access and Empowerment, Arvind and Sahibzada Farhan presented the topic and the case study prepared by the group. Arvind from India shed some light on the current status of Internet Access globally and also identified and explained the key issues and challenges related to Access and Empowerment in the developing countries. He also pointed out the figures for the annual growth rate in different regions. In addition, 5G deployment and access were also highlighted.

After that, Sahibzada Farhan from Pakistan took the lead and explained the technical and business perspective of Internet Access and the bodies working to overcome the issues related to it. He gave a highlight on digital accessibility, mainly on web accessibility, followed by a brief overview of the case study regarding Digital Accessibility in Pakistan with a focus on the impact of a Community Network on Improving Education in Pakistan. This case study documents the impact of providing access to underserved areas and empowering teachers and students with digital tools and skills at the Government Girls High School located in a village in Pakistan.

After finishing the presentation, the guest speakers Naveed Haq and Maureen Hilyard commented on the presentation and shared their valuable
insights regarding the topic.

“I really felt very inspired by all those words and I could see NextGen. leaders who are trying to understand more about these issues.”
– Naveed Haq-

“It was just brilliant because it was a very good introduction to
Access and Empowerment”
– Maureen Hilyard-

Maureen also highlighted the challenges and projects in the Cook island. In the end, policy questions were discussed in a break-out group discussion with the guests followed by the Q&A session.

About the writer
Sahibzada Farhan Amin (NetMission Ambassador of class 2019/20, Pakistan)
Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical Engineering, National University of Computer and Emerging Sciences