[Governance] Seeking roll back of IGF Leadership Panel

Mueller, Milton L milton at gatech.edu
Fri Nov 26 13:28:47 EST 2021

I don't agree with the premise that because the UN SG's office proposed something that I need to have an alternative proposal. I think the more fundamental issue we are debating is whether the IGF serves a useful function, under its current parameters (nonbinding, open, ms discussion forum). My answer is yes, and my most basic alternative is to stop trying to turn it into something else, via "high-levelism."

The next question is what can be done to strengthen it? Here is a simple program

  1.  Confine discussions to actual global internet governance issues. Sorry, folks, climate change is important but it's not IG
  2.  Start doing something meaningful with IGF main sessions. Instead of gigantic panels full of anodyne, inoffensive statements, have focused debates in which real policy alternatives are debated by people who have real standing, and make them interact meaningfully with the broader set of participants
  3.  Don't shy away from geopolitical debates involving state actors.

That would be a good start.
Now when you say, "the current status quo is not fit for purpose" please tell me what purpose you have in mind.


From: Governance <governance-bounces at lists.igcaucus.org> on behalf of Olivier MJ Crépin-Leblond via Governance <governance at lists.igcaucus.org>
Sent: Friday, November 26, 2021 7:01 AM
To: parminder <parminder at itforchange.net>; governance at lists.igcaucus.org <governance at lists.igcaucus.org>
Subject: Re: [Governance] Seeking roll back of IGF Leadership Panel

Dear Parminder,

I understand from your letter with Milton that you are *against* the creation of an IGF Leadership Panel. What I'd like to hear is what you and Milton propose instead. It is easy to be against all sorts of things, but the world isn't static and from the IGF conultations, it is clear that the current status quo is no longer fit for purpose. There needs to be evolution.
So what next?


Olivier Crépin-Leblond
(speaking on my own behalf)

On 24/11/2021 15:32, parminder via Governance wrote:

Dear All,

Please find enclosed a letter addressed to the UN Secretary General appealing to him to roll back the decision for an IGF Leadership Panel.

The letter is co-signed by Dr Milton Mueller, on behalf  of the Internet Governance Project, Georgia Institute of Technology School of Public Policy, and Parmider Jeet Singh, for IT for Change, and the Just Net Coalition.

The letter is cc-ed to representatives of civil society and technical community groups requesting them to refrain from sending nominations for the IGF Leadership Panel, and thus legitimizing it.

The letter argues how the IGF Leadership Panel militates against the basic idea, objectives and structure of the IGF, and will weaken it.

Best, parminder

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