What is a preparatory conference 1

Preparatory conference "ICT & Creativity" opened - 1

Vienna (OTS) - The conference "ICT & Creativity - Strategies for a better Information Society", which opened in Vienna today, prepares the way for the second phase of the "UN World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS)" in Tunis. The focus of the consultations is on the use of information and communication technologies and their use for the global community. Another goal is to position Austria as a creativity location for e-content. The conference succeeded in creating a broad platform in Vienna. The event is sponsored by the Federal Chancellery in cooperation with the Ministry of Economics, Foreign Affairs, Education and Transport. Three UN organizations, UNESCO, ITU and UNIDO, sent their highest representatives, which underlines the importance and the exceptional position of the topic.

"The use of ICT should serve to expand and build a global community," said Peter A. Bruck, chairman of the World Summit Award. It is important to overcome the imbalance in the world, to bridge the "digital divide". The conference offers an ideal platform for solving the open questions. The process is structured to give room for creativity, but the discussion is open, according to Bruck.

Koichiro Matsuura, Director General of UNESCO, pointed out the importance of education in closing the "digital divide". It is the prerequisite for optimally using the technological means to create an open society. In the process that has already been started, it should not come to excluding others. The quality of the work would depend on the involvement of all governments and international organizations. That is why UNESCO is concentrating on networking and promoting partnerships.

Carlos Margariños, Director General of UNIDO, advocated the use of information and communication technologies in the fight against poverty. Access to information would help those affected. Technological development is just as important as the engine of economic growth.

"In order to benefit from the information society, the technical potential must be used," said Roberto Blois Mentes de Souza, Deputy Secretary General of the ITU, the International Telecommunication Union. Since it was founded in 1860, it has been advocating the implementation of global systems and bringing science and technology together. The ITU is working to bring information and communication technology to people who do not have it. "Cooperation with governments is crucial for success," said Blois Mentes de Souza.

The identification of the topics during the first phase of the process in 2003 is now followed by the implementation of the action plan adopted at the time. The Tunisian government has invited representatives from governments, civil society, industry and other sectors from all countries to the UN World Summit to be held in Tunis in November.

"ICT & Creativity - Strategies for a better Information Society", conference on the "World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS)", June 2nd and 3rd in Vienna, Palais Niederösterreich, Herrengasse 13, 1010 Vienna, Information: http: // www. wsa-conference.org, http://www.itu.int/wsis)

0662/63 04 08
www.wsis-award.org

Inquiries & contact:

Federal Chancellery Federal Press Service
Dr. Walter Reichel
(01) 531 15 / 2401

ICNM - International Center for New Media
Mag. Erika Leitinger
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Dr. Stefan Kaufer
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