Internet Governance

The nature of evolution of the Internet is an important determinant of social change. The Internet is no longer simply a technical platform about which technical experts are best placed to take important decisions. Who then should shape the evolution of the Internet, and how? Users determining the Internet's trajectory is largely a myth, though some remarkable oases of alternative practices amongst committed techies and other 'power users' do exist. To the extent the user has a role, it is in her capacity as a consumer, which capacity is very unequally distributed between affluent and marginalised groups. Largely, it is corporatist and statist powers that are shaping the Internet. We believe that ordinary people and communities must have greater control in shaping the Internet for a future society that is egalitarian. Towards this end, we undertake research, and advocate national and global norms and policies that recognise, and underpin, the Internet as a force for equality and social justice.

RECENT

Data and Digital Intelligence Common -- Making a Case for their Community Ownership

A major problem is that most people still see data just as ordinary knowledge or information which therefore is best to be subject to 'open access' regimes. This is also the moral basis for the free global flows of data advocacy -- which argument many if not most civil society activists worldwide often fall prey to.

The research paper…

This report presents emerging insights from the research studies being undertaken under the project. Covering 14 countries and a range of domains and sectors, it examines the current trends in platformization, mapping the emerging policy responses and challenges.

Read more from the 'Policy Frameworks for Digital Platforms' research…

Development Justice

Digital and data technologies are not merely tools or enablers of development; they are the scaffolds of a new social paradigm. As data flows through a more and more interconnected planet, the capture of network-data spaces by corporate and state interest recasts opportunity structures, heightening inequalities between, and within, countries.…

Digital Industrialisation

The paper, developed for the Commonwealth Secretariat, London, examines, the nature of digital economy in a developing country context, focussing the study partly on Bengaluru, often called the Silicon Valley of the South. It distinguishes digital industry from the earlier software industry and then the Internet industry.The paper defines…

digital public goods

Progress towards every single sustainable development goal (SDG) of Agenda 2030 also hinges on the effective deployment of digital technologies. In Global Governance Spotlight 4|2019, Anita Gurumurthy and Nandini Chami from IT for Change explain the importance of so-called digital ecosystems to catalyse inclusive sustainable development. In…

Data Localisation

A global Internet with unrestrained global flow of data has been held up as the ideal. However, while there is great value in it, there are also other, often competing, imperatives of ensuring rule of law over the internet and data, and using local and national data for encouraging domestic digital industry and for policy making and governance…