GVI connected with Sivasubramanian, a thought leader in Internet governance space based in India and currently serves global organizations like ISOC and ICANN at various capacities. GVI spoke with him to understand how post-2015 development efforts are impacting people in the Asia.
Do you think the mechanisms for multistakeholder engagement in forging the agenda (e.g. the online World We Want platform, the MY World 2015 Global Survey, as well as regional and national consultations) will usher in new ongoing modes of inclusive global governance? Should it?
It is good to see multistakeholder model being increasingly adopted in the forging and implementing the Developmental Agenda in Global Governance. While the world has been considerably effective in minimizing global conflicts or providing relief on a global scale, its ultilateral process, in the area of economic and social development, during the past 70 years, has been highly politicized in identifying the core issues and in reaching agreements on the developmental priorities; where the issues are identified, the topdown implementation model produced suboptimal results.
Intergovernmental diplomatic process by seasoned diplomats is required in some specialized areas such as global conflict resolution, but at the same time, the global developmental tasks are so enormous and so complex that it is impossible for Governments alone, (in disconnected isolation of other stakeholders) to generate effective and conclusive solutions to problems. In the multistakeholder process, not only does stakes are claimed by stakeholders but the expertise from across different stakeholder groups of Business, Academia and other sectors of the Civil Society combine with that of the Government to generate well informed and optimal solutions to various issues.
Inclusive Governance does not necessarily imply proportionate inclusion of participants from every region, from every country, from every creed, proportionately across genders. Such a rationale for inclusiveness would generate endless debates on the basis for proportionate representation, for example, inclusion in proportion of population, inclusion in proportion of geographic space etc. By extension there is no single formula for proportionate representation, that could be deemed completely fair. What ought to be the focus is fair global governance, fair for everyone. If there is a fair process where a woman could decide in a manner that is fair for both genders, then it is not required to double a seat where only one is required.
Fair global governance is achievable by the multistakeholder process as this process tends to broadly balance the interests, even without proportionate inclusion or representation. As the development process increasingly adopts the multistakeholder process, global governance becomes more and more effective.What are your thoughts or what role does you see for the private sector, for philanthropists, other new actors in development? What would be the nature of some of the collaborations, and on what issues?
Private Sector has played a role that is much greater than that of governments in global development. While Governments have played the role of a regulator, private sector has brought in innovations and caused progress to happen. The role of Government could be viewed as that of a facilitator or enabler, instead of a regulator, then the roles played by the rest of the actors become more and more effective. Philanthropists could look for similarity of causes and bring together resources where possible for more effective global philanthropy. For a start, there could be a spatial overview of philanthropic missions and programs to minimize redundant allocations and to cover neglected areas of philanthropy. An effective multistakeholder process could help channelize or guide the philanthropic resources in a manner that such resources are optimally allocated for global development. Private Sector could consider adopting the social enterprise model more and more, get more involved in the multistakeholder process and also support the participation of Civil Society and ther actors who might have participation constraints.
The online stakeholder engagement platforms are valuable tools to engage stakeholders. The platforms need to incorporate more collaborative tools, perhaps with help from the Internet technical community who would be glad to contribute to the efforts to apply their expertise to aid developmental efforts.