17 April 2019

Digital Society Network: Students attend World Summit of the Information Society 2019 in Geneva

Eight students from the faculty attended the World Summit of the Information Society (WSIS) Forum 2019 in Geneva, Switzerland, earlier this month.

The students at the World Summit of the Information Society 2019 in Geneva.
From left to right: Dr Paul Reilly, Mike Pinney, Romany Kisbee Batho, Myra Mufti, Hana Okasha, Evelyn Baskaradas, Daniel Kirby, Victoria Baskett, Suay Ozkula and Rebecca Heminway

WSIS is a United Nations multi-stakeholder forum, co-organised by ITU, UNESCO, UNDP and UNCTAD. It is currently the largest annual meeting on digital technologies for development in the world. The theme of this year’s 10th anniversary forum was “Information and Communication Technologies for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals”.

Joined by Dr Suay Ozkula (Sociological Studies) and Dr Paul Reilly (Information School), the students from the Department of Sociological Studies, Information School, Department of Urban Studies and Planning and School of Law worked as policy analysts, writing policy briefs and blogs for the Global Policy Journal, on discussions and sessions held at the forum.

The group also hosted a panel event on ‘ICTs in the university environment - 7 case’ during the five day forum. They presented case studies from ICTs in the university environment and provided critical reflections surrounding different digital divides and digital ethics.

Rebecca Heminway, who is studying for an MA in Digital Media and Society, said: "Most people I knew couldn't get their heads around that I was going to a UN summit. It has been great to discuss the summit experience with friends, family and colleagues.

“It's also led to some opportunities to engage them in discussing ICTs and society and share some of my learning already. An amazing experience made possible by GLOSS and I'm so very grateful!"

The group attended WSIS as part of the Faculty of Social Science’s GLOSS initiative. The scheme provides students in the faculty with unique opportunities to understand their courses in an international context, actively engage with international policy makers, stakeholders and partners and be involved in international research.

A world-class university – a unique student experience

Sheffield is a research university with a global reputation for excellence. We're a member of the Russell Group: one of the 24 leading UK universities for research and teaching.