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Thursday, December 21 • 10:00 - 13:00

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Digital Transformation: How Do We Shape Its Socio-Economic and Labor Impacts for Good?

This session aims to facilitate a thoughtful dialogue on the process of digitization and digital transformation, examining its effect on the global value chain, new business models, and the future workforce. 

Cross-border data flow has accelerated economic globalization while the flows of international trade and finance have flattened since 2008. The increase in digital flows is underpinned by a process of statistically-evidenced vertiginous digitization. The digitization of products that were traditionally delivered physically but can also be transmitted electronically over the Internet, plays an important role in this process, opens new possibilities for e-commerce, and is an essential part of achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). 

The increased use of data will be required to realize the potential of the digital transformation. In the near future, data flows will increase under the pervasive Internet of Things (IoT). Data analytics, machine learning, and artificial intelligence (AI) are perceived to be fundamental to the transformation of both developed and developing economics. Under the ‘sharing economy’, digital platforms enable direct exchanges between service providers and potential customers. They also reshape organizations and the future of the work, necessitating a dialogue about how to enable an inclusive digital transformation which benefits everyone.

This session will be divided into two parts: The first part will be dedicated to understanding how digitization is affecting global digital production and commerce, and impacting development. The second part will discuss the impact of the digital economy on the workforce in both  developed and developing countries, especially examining a relationship between the consequences of the sharing economy and automation and job creation / destruction, productivity, and labor rights, taking into account the distinct contexts of declining / increasing demographics.

I. Introduction (7 min.)
   Mr. Kenta Mochizuki, MAG member (Yahoo Japan Corporation)

II. Part 1: Digitization, global production, and flows of digital commerce (80 min.)

○       Short initial remarks from discussants (20 min.)

○       Discussions (50 min.)

○       The discussion will seamlessly combine initial remarks with interactive reactions from the audience/participants (10 min.)

III. Part 2: Digitization, automation, and employment issues (85 min.)

○       Short initial remarks from key discussants (24 min.)

○       Discussions (50 min.)

○       The discussion will seamlessly combine initial remarks with interactive reactions from the audience/participants (10 min.)

IV: Conclusions and wrap-up (8 min.)
     Ms. Renata Aquino Ribeiro, MAG Member (E.I. Consulting)

Part 1: Digitization, global production, and flows of digital commerce (60 min.)
1) How is the new digital ecosystem different than the traditional ecosystem? What are considerations for enabling the development of healthy digital ecosystems? What are the main policy issues related to global production value chains in the digital environment?

2) What are the contributions of different types of e-commerce (B2B, B2C, B2G) to the global economy and how is e-commerce distributed worldwide? What is the role of e-commerce marketplaces for the inclusion of SMEs and developing market contenders in global trade chains?

3) How do emerging technologies, such as big data, IoT, and AI affect e-commerce? What are the main policy options that facilitate or create obstacles to global trade flows?

4) How does digitization enable new business models and encourage entrepreneurship?

5) What roles do international organizations play in facilitating the discussion of these policies and how can they work with other actors to promote better coordination in the field of e-commerce? 

Part 2: Digitization, automation, and employment issues (90 min.) 
1) What are some of the lessons learned from past market transformations, e.g., agricultural to industrial, and how does digitization assist in making the most of the lessons (taking also into account the context of sharing economy)?

2) Are there tools that can better measure and predict the impact of ICT on the labor market? Are there tools that can predict what skills are needed going forward?

3) What are the ways in which the labor market will most likely be affected by digitization and automation? What policies should be considered in an environment of increasing demographics in developing countries? Do ICTs actually assist developed countries in addressing understaffing situation while maintaining the diversity of a career choice as well as mitigating risks to the well-being of the labor force?

4) What will be the necessary professional skills to take advantage of the jobs created in a highly digital society and what are examples of innovative approaches to training by which workers can be more effectively connected to more opportunities? Should different approaches be considered for people at different stages in their career?

5) How can education and capacity development play a role in this new scenario and what kind of efforts would be necessary for public / private stakeholders to promote the education and capacity development in both developed and developing countries?

We will have several moderators since moderation should be dynamic, proposing questions and making sure that the “debate-style” flows smoothly, and that the audience has the chance to participate. Because of the importance of this role, we will continue to brainstorm on who the moderators should be based on a pool of names below.

【Part I】
Dr. Makoto Yokozawa, Nomura Research Institute/Kyoto University (*Co-chair of OECD/BIAC Committee on Digital Economic Policy)

【Part II】
1) Ms. Paola Pérez, Vice-President of the ISOC Venezuelan Chapter / Chair of the LACNIC Public Policy Forum (Introductory Part)
2) Dr. Nathalia Foditsch, Research Fellow at Cornell College of Business - Washington, DC (Closing Remarks)

Mr. Auke Pals, Student Information Science at the University of Amsterdam, innovation consultant, entrepreneur and chair of the Dutch Digital Youth Counsel


In this regard, we will have at least 2 panelists/speakers from each 5 sector as follows:

【Part I】
Mr. Oscar Gonzalez, Government of Argentina
Mr. Torbjörn Fredriksson, UNCTAD
Ms. Ankhi Das, Facebook
Ms. Farzaneh Badiei, Georgia Institute of Technology
Dr. Walid Al-Saqaf, Södertörn University

【Part II】
Ms. Ana Cristina Amoroso das Neves, Government of Portugal
H.E. Eng. Hossam El Gamal, Government of Egypt
Ms. Valentina Scialpi, EU
Mr. Philip Jennings, UNI Global Union
Mr. Edmon Chung, DotAsia Organization
Ms. Karen McCabe, IEEE

【Part 2】
Mr. Ndicho Bambo, Samuel, Yaoundé, Foreign Service Officer, Ministry of External Relation, Cameroon

First of all, because our session will be “debate-style”, there will be active interaction among expert speakers/panelists and the mood will be set for audience interventions and questions. To put it another way, we will make every single effort to create an atmosphere for active interaction not only among the panelists/speakers but between the panel and the audience.

Second, in order to foster interactive discussion among all participants, there will be the opportunity of an open mic. We will ask moderators for 2 sub-sessions to pay closer attention to the reaction of the audience during the sessions and involve the audience as much as possible.

Interventions from online participants will be given equal priority as to those from the physical audience. Onsite and online moderator will coordinate closely. To broaden participation, online interaction will rely on the WebEx platform and will also include social media (Twitter and Facebook). Online moderators will be in charge of browsing social media using some hashtags (to be defined). We will try to have English, French, Portuguese, and Spanish online moderators, and a systematic queue.

In addition, we plan to use a “Twitter wall” which can be either a physical monitor at the session or a tag with a Storify-like interface where people can interact with before, during, and after the session. Since we have ever collaborated with Youth IGFs, we will ask Youth IGF volunteers to be part of our team and support our session on this aspect. We are confident that it will introduce dynamism and reinforce the goal of maximizing the opportunities for the involvement of the audience in situ and remote.

Our session connects with multiple workshops of IGF 2017 which deal with in some way the topic of digital economy. A workshop titled “WS #141 Equipping populations with the skills to shape and secure their digital future” is one example which directly relates to our session. Since mos


Session Organizers
avatar for Kenta Mochizuki

Kenta Mochizuki

IGF/MAG Member, Principal / Attorney at Law (New York), Public Policy, Corporate Intelligence, Yahoo Japan Corporation
Kenta Mochizuki is a Japanese representative member of the Multistakeholder Advisory Group of UN Internet Governance Forum (IGF/MAG) as well as Principal / Attorney at Law (New York) in Yahoo Japan Corporation. As an international lawyer, he specializes a wide range of international... Read More →
avatar for Renata Aquino Ribeiro

Renata Aquino Ribeiro

Researcher, E.I.
MAG IGF CS. Full bio: http://bit.ly/renataineng

Thursday December 21, 2017 10:00 - 13:00 CET
Main Hall - Room XVII - E United Nations Office at Geneva (UNOG)