The targeted GIG-ARTS project is expected to meet the following scientific, political and socio-economic objectives:
- Advance scientific research on global Internet governance actors, regulations, transactions and strategies. GIG-ARTS partners will explore theoretically and empirically these very timely and still unresolved issues, building on their current respective work and other state of the art research. Research questions will be mainly framed, with a multidisciplinary approach, along the following two wide sets of issues:
- Newly emerging or little explored actors (such as: Intergovernmental organisations; the so-called technical community; regulating agencies, arbitration tribunals and justice courts); their roles in global Internet governance processes and their institutionalization, their strategies and interactions with each other and with better known actors (governments, civil society, business sector), their own internal transformations through their participation to global Internet governance processes, etc.
- New forms, modes, procedures and substance of regulations and the mechanisms implementing them; their compliance (or lack thereof) with good governance values, democracy, human rights and the rule of law; Do they lead to the redefinition of these values, and if so, following which processes and producing which results. Technical artefacts, beyond architectures and protocols - e.g. datafication processes, predictive algorithms, and Internet platforms – will be especially examined as increasingly important governance means and processes. The question whether, in which way and to which extent they modify all possible kinds of transactions (legal, political, economic, social…) will be particularly explored, leading to analyse whether - and if so, how - they need to be themselves regulated.
- Address a major development in the global economy and our societies, that of their so-called “Uberisation”. As a matter of fact, some countries (e.g. France) are already defining regulation policies in the field. At the European level, the Commission ran from 24 September 2015 to 6 January 2016 a public consultation on Online platforms, cloud & data, liability of intermediaries, collaborative economy. As this might well impact future European discussions of the revision of current EU legislation, the development of the targeted project will help informing debates and proposing relevant policy recommendations.
- Anchor and disseminate a vision of global Internet governance that is rooted in European values, while the field has been for long dominated by US interests, especially that of private sector Internet giants; Such values include: sustainability, participatory governance, openness and transparency in policies and markets, the respect of human rights, social justice and social cohesion, as well as democracy and the rule of law.
- Address countries in the European neighbourhood, some of them (East and South) being in transition, as a particular dissemination target. Many of these countries, including those in discussion for or aiming at an EU accession or an EU partnership status, still have to define Internet-related legislations and regulations, while decision makers blatantly lack information on what is at stake and while no real public debate is taking place in society because of the lack of competence or even awareness in the field.
- Provide resources and support means for science diplomacy, when global Internet governance discussions are not anymore confined to dedicated and mostly technical arenas, but are rather addressed, regionally or globally, in all major political settings and by all major intergovernmental organisations.
- Foster the enlargement and diversification of the Global Internet Governance academic community, open more opportunities to young scholars, and eventually provide this scholarly community the visibility it deserves.
- Increase knowledge sharing, both among the scholarly community and beyond the academic circles to other stakeholders, by defining mechanisms and providing a useful set of open-access resources.