The Youth Observatory is a nonprofit organization founded in September 2015 and joined the Internet Society (ISOC) as "Special Interest Group" (SIG) since 2016. It is formed mostly of young people between 18 and 25 years from different countries in Latin America and the Caribbean.
Its objectives are the same as ISOC, but with emphasis on the training of young people in the knowledge of the ecosystem and Internet governance in order to increase their participation in these spaces, the disclosure of the importance of these topics and academic research.
The Youth Observatory is looking to have a global reach, for which has a development program for the next two years. Currently it's working on regional projects of capacity building, information dissemination and promotion of research by young people in the areas of Internet governance, cyber security, digital rights management, etc; all these projects are funded by different organizations such as the Internet Society and ICANN.
The Youth Observatory was an idea borned in the context of the Youth@IGF 2015, a program led by Internet Society and CGI.br initiative that tried to increase the participation of youth in the areas of discussion of Internet governance in Latin America and the Caribbean and was attended by 120 young people from the region.
There is no formal date of launch because the idea of making the Youth Observatory was evolved during the program, but at the end of September 2015 we had already decided the name of the organization and its main objectives. At this stage the first major collaborative project was the writing and publication of the "Youth Declaration", a document written in Spanish, Portuguese and English that expressed our concerns and wishes about the participation of youth in the areas of discussion of Internet governance. Copies of this document were delivered to different personalities.
The first physical meeting of the Youth Observatory members was held in Joao Pessoa (Brazil), during the X Internet Governance Forum, where they were finalized objectives, certain responsibilities were established and communication channels were set up to undertake to formalize the organization.
This process ended in February 2016 when we received the approval of ISOC and we were recognized with the status of "Special Interest Group" (SIG), which means that since that moment we have all the rights enjoyed by chapters local ISOC, including which it is funding, advice and logistical support to achieve our goals, as well as been supported by an organization with global reach.
Currently, the Youth SIG has more than 80 young people from different countries with membership and very active in the various working groups. The organization has a solid structure and rules and regulations that enable its continued growth.
Mission and Vision of the Youth Observatory
Using the power of the Internet to build capacity in young people and to stimulate their participation in ecosystem development and Internet governance.
- Create a platform to expand knowledge on the principles of Internet and its governance, and to promote a fluid exchange and to accentuate communication among youth in the region Latin America on these issues.
- Build an identity of youth, tending opening and disseminate their ideas within the Internet ecosystem, so they are to be included in local and regional debates.
- Empower young people in the region so they can advance their participation in Internet governance and the spread in their communities.
- Build capacity in young people and transfer knowledge to have solid tools and knowledge to generate new lines of discussion Internet Governance forums.
- Generate connections globally through dialogue and active cooperation of the youths.
- Join Us
- Calling All Young People: Join The Youth Observatory and Help Change How Internet Policy is Made
- Youth@IGF 2015
- Youth Declaration