The ‘Standards Edge’ conference entitled Digital Inclusion: Accelerating Global Participation & Access through Open ICT Standards. The conference will take place on November 11, 2007, one day before the Internet Governance Forum, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

This conference is sponsored by Sun Microsystems and the Bolin Group. Invited sponsors include Red Hat, the Brazilian Presidency Cabinet, the Soros Foundation, the University of Sao Paulo, the University of Rio, and Knowledge Economy International. The United Nations Internet Governance Forum (IGF) has kindly donated the conference space.

About the Conference:

Digital inclusion and participation are essential to societal and economic growth. Business, education, government services, and even social networks are all turning to digital means for creating and distributing information and services. Those with access can take advantage of this broader availability to thrive and prosper. However, those without access will find themselves increasingly distanced further behind a wall of poverty and ignorance.

‘Open Standards’ can help to ensure broader access worldwide, enabling all to become digitally literate and take advantage of technological advances to improve their lives. Far from just being a technical concern, ‘open standards’ need local and international policies that encourage their use in a way that benefits society and the economy.

This conference will examine how open standardization can enable all stakeholders to participate in the benefits and governance of the digital world. With developing economies predicted to contribute 50% to the growth in world trade over the next couple of decades, their participation in digital governance and standardization is critical to building and maintaining a viable market, technological, and standardization infrastructure.

The conference will feature expert panelists in four areas:
Digital Inclusion and Literacy through Open Standards
Increasing Accessibility to Government Services and Social Programs through Open Standards
Balanced Representation in ICT Standardization
International Market Influence

Further information can be found on the conference at: