The Council of Europe is participating in the 18th UN Internet Governance Forum (IGF) hosted by the government of Japan from 8 to 12 October in Kyoto, Japan, under the theme “The Internet We Want - Empowering All People”.
In addition to engaging in the general discussions, the Council of Europe will organise or co-organise several events, mainly focusing on artificial intelligence (AI), the use of electronic evidence and open-source intelligence (OSINT) in the context of war crimes and human rights violations, as well as emerging technologies such as the metaverse.
On 8 October Deputy Secretary General Bjørn Berge will deliver a keynote speech at an event to discuss the challenges to human rights and democratic values posed by the increasing use of artificial intelligence technologies. The participants will also examine the efforts to create legal frameworks to tackle these challenges, including the draft framework convention currently being negotiated at the Council of Europe.
On 9 October the forum Benefits and challenges of the immersive realities will explore the potential and impact on human rights, the rule of law and democracy of immersive realities technology, often linked to the concept of the Metaverse. The findings of a report on this topic prepared for the Council of Europe by the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) will also be discussed.
On 11 October the workshop War crimes and gross human rights violations: e-evidence will examine the critical role that electronic evidence and OSINT can play in uncovering and documenting war crimes and gross human rights violations, with the Russian war of aggression against Ukraine as a recent example. Participants will assess how international legal frameworks such as the Cybercrime Convention and its 2nd Protocol can facilitate cross-border cooperation and secure electronic evidence.
Finally, on 12 October a session on Artificial Intelligence and Environment: Sustainable Development will address how AI technologies can help to fight climate change and protect the environment, including by reducing energy emissions, developing greener transportation networks, monitoring deforestation and predicting extreme weather. The fact that AI is a highly energy-consuming technology will also be considered.