Economic growth and international security are increasingly endangered by national policies governing the secure flow of information and the handling of data. The strategic objective of the Global Cooperation in Cyberspace Initiative is to mitigate the negative consequences of global Internet fragmentation.
The threat to economic growth and international security is being driven by three influences: political and economic concerns, security concerns and weak governance. Within these categories are more specific issues including Internet content, surveillance, the protection of critical infrastructures, cyber crime, and Internet governance institutions. If these threats are not mitigated, trust in the Internet will erode, dissolving into a fragmented Splinternet that will undermine global economic growth and fuel international instability.
The EastWest Institute is helping to create institutions, processes and policies that reduce the pressures driving Internet fragmentation. The opportunity for the Global Cooperation in Cyberspace Initiative arises from the three aforementioned challenges and three matching objectives: economic and political development; digital security and stability; sound governance and management. More specific goals included within these objectives are securing ICT products and services; managing policy barriers that limit access to information for innovation and education; exploring surveillance, privacy and big data; working to mitigate cyber risks to critical infrastructure; modernizing law enforcement; and facilitating the design and testing for manageable and accountable Internet governance structures. Over the past five years, EastWest’s cyber collaboration has integrated public and private leadership to address several serious challenges in cyberspace, and will continue to do so in Berlin.
By using EWI’s proven process—Convene, Reframe, Mobilize—the initiative aims to achieve its objectives and mitigate the impact of the Splinternet.
Pathways to Improve Global Cooperation in Cyberspace
San Francisco, June 2014
Fifty experts and policymakers took part in the EastWest Institute’s cyber working roundtable in San Francisco on June 17, 2014. The roundtable marked an important moment in EWI’s history as it was the official launch of the Global Cooperation in Cyberspace Initiative. Experts and policymakers from 13 countries, including China, India and Russia, participated in the launch and successfully set the pace for the initiative. One of the big questions participants sought to address was, “What change would make the Internet a safer and better place to work, play and live?” EWI Distinguished Fellow and former Deputy National Security Adviser of India Latha Reddy remarked that without sound governance the problems discussed in breakthrough groups would only continue to get more and more intractable. Michele Markoff, the deputy coordinator for Cyber Issues at the U.S. Department of State, pointed out the drawbacks of a top-down approach to governing the Internet. Working around these themes, participants separated into breakthrough groups to discuss concrete steps on tackling problems. The San Francisco launch proved a good starting point; all breakthrough groups successfully identified and agreed on obstacles and possible solutions to the three challenges targeted by the initiative. The goal is to enhance cooperation and agreement about what needs to be done to secure the internet and prevent the Splinternet.
Explore the Breakthrough Groups:
Online Breakthrough Group Meetings
The Global Cooperation in Cyberspace Initiative uses EWI’s proven process—Convene, Reframe, Mobilize—to help achieve the objectives that will mitigate the impact of the Splinternet. This work takes place through working groups, called breakthrough groups, that have met and will continue to meet in person and online at least three times in 2014.
The seven breakthrough groups concentrate on the initiative’s three objectives to move progress forward. With a focus on economic and political development, three groups study the increasing the global availability of secure ICT products and services, managing policy barriers that limit access to information for innovation and education, and exploring surveillance, privacy and big data. The groups focused on digital security and stability discuss strengthening critical infrastructure resilience and preparedness, modernizing international procedures against cyber-enabled crimes and promoting measures of restraint in cyber armaments. Lastly, a group that supports all breakthrough group topics examines the issues surrounding governing and managing the Internet.
Global Cyberspace Cooperation Summit
The EastWest Institute’s annual cyber summits provide a crucial forum for building international, private-public actions to foster international cooperation in cyberspace. The summits—Dallas in May 2010, London in June 2011, New Delhi in October 2012 and Silicon Valley in November 2013—brought together more than 350 government, industry and technical leaders from more than 40 countries to craft solutions for threats facing our digital world.
This year, the EastWest Institute and the German Foreign Office are proudly co-hosting the 2014 Global Cyberspace Cooperation Summit in Berlin, Germany on December 3-5.
Join Our Process:
If you are interested in joining the EastWest Institute’s Global Cooperation in Cyberspace Initiative, please contact us for more information on our breakthrough groups and working process.
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Join the Summit:
The summit is unique by its truly global scope—our ability to bring experts from different countries and sectors together to forge solutions. The event is by invitation only. For more information on the summit and how to attend, please contact Ashley Dennee.
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Summit sponsors benefit by being part of the solution to the world’s most critical problems that threaten the safety, stability and security of cyberspace.
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