Join APNIC Foundation sessions on diversity and connectivity at the APrIGF 2023

By on 23 Aug 2023

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A picture from the 2019 Asia Pacific Regional Internet Governance Conference (APrIGF)
A session from the 2019 Asia Pacific Regional Internet Governance Conference (APrIGF)

The 2023 Asia Pacific Regional Internet Governance Forum (APrIGF) conference will take place in Brisbane, Australia, from 29 to 31 August.

The APNIC Foundation (Foundation) will be participating in two sessions at the event. The first, hosted by the Foundation, will focus on diversity in the Internet sector, while the second, hosted by the Institute for Social Entrepreneurship in Asia (ISEA), focuses on complementary connectivity solutions.

Both will be held on Tuesday, 29 August, with in-person and online participation available.

Investing in professional development for a diverse workforce in APAC: challenges and opportunities

The first session will focus on challenges and opportunities that Internet industry professionals (and their employers) face in relation to developing the skills and diversity of their workforce.

The panel will discuss how to address structural barriers and find balance between various competing tensions, like acquiring new technical skills vs operational expertise and confidence, as well as carving out time for personal learning amid the pressures of the industry.

The session will be moderated by Omar Ansari, who is the Project Lead for the Foundation’s Technical Training and Mentoring Support to Internet Professionals in Afghanistan project.

Joining him for the presentation will be Lima Madomi, a participant in the Afghanistan Project, as well as Minh Châu Lưu and Bouala Phouannavong who are participants in the Foundation’s Switch! Gender Diversity project. The Switch! project operates across the economies of Cambodia, Laos, the Philippines, Thailand, Timor Leste and Viet Nam, and supports women and LGBTQI+ people in their professional development in the technical sector.

Join ‘Investing in professional development for a diverse workforce in APAC: challenges and opportunities’ on 29 August at 11:00 (UTC +10) during APrIGF Stream 2.

Sustainability of Complementary Connectivity Initiatives

This session, hosted by the ISEA, will focus on a variety of business models and approaches that tackle financial and technical sustainability issues faced by initiatives in the Asia Pacific, mainly focusing on rural/remote solutions, where bringing meaningful connectivity to the unconnected and addressing the digital divide are still the main challenges. 

The session will be moderated by Sylvia Cadena, the Foundation’s Head of Programs and Partnerships, with Sarbani Banerjee Belur moderating the remote participation. Sarbani is part of a project team led by ISEA, looking at three connectivity initiatives, including a Foundation-supported project that spans Bangladesh, China, and the Philippines. The speakers include:

  • Marie Lisa M. Dacanay PhD, the founding President of ISEA, and a pioneer in social entrepreneurship education and research in the Asian region.
  • Michael Ginguld, Director of Operations at Airjaldi. Airjaldi specializes in connecting challenging regions of India and is currently working on a hybrid ‘WiFibre’ project to connect rural communities.
  • Founder and CEO of Boom!, Lubuw Falanruw. Boom! is currently working on a project to connect Micronesia building out from submarine cable capacity that was brought to the Pacific in recent years.
  • They will be joined by Ms. Reina Wulansari, from the Common Room Networks Foundation. Common Room has been involved in a School of Community Networking project that is building out connectivity infrastructure and skills to support nearby rural communities.
  • The panel will also include the Managing Director of Distant Curve Remote Area Telecommunications, Matthew James. Distant Curve is currently in the process of connecting remote areas of Australia’s Northern Territory with microwave technology.

Join ‘Sustainability of Complementary Connectivity Initiatives’ on 29 August at 14:00 (UTC +10) during APrIGF Stream 2.

APrIGF / PACIGF Fellowships

The Foundation is also working together with APNIC to support Fellows to attend the APrIGF / Pacific IGF. The following Fellows have been supported in 2023:

NameNationalityStakeholder Group
Robert AbbilVanuatuGovernment
Jason DicksonPapua New GuineaGovernment
Chia Chen LinSamoaPrivate Sector
Bongraoi ArebaioKiribatiTechnical
Ayesha Rani LataFijiInter Governmental Organization
Shrestra SharmaFijiGovernment
Brian Misikui MangiSolomon IslandsPrivate Sector
Gina Fangu O Vavau MaheTongaPrivate Sector
Table 1 — The APrIGF / PACIGF fellows.

APrIGF 2023 is co-located with NetThing 2023, Pacific IGF, and Youth IGF. View the program online.

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The views expressed by the authors of this blog are their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of APNIC. Please note a Code of Conduct applies to this blog.

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