MIT Press launches study on the information society


The MIT Press has just published a double issue of Information Technologies and International Development (ITID) under the editorial direction of Michael L. Best, Ernest J. Wilson III and Colin Maclay. This issue, The World Summit in Reflection, is a project of the University of Maryland, Georgia Tech and the Berkman Center for Internet and Society, Harvard Law School.

Required reading for anyone interested in the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS), the printed issue brings together 37 essays on WSIS, thus creating a unique resource for scholars, activists and practitioners trying to understand the substance and the politics of the Summit. In addition, the MIT Press is offering an online resource containing an additional 82 papers along with interactive spaces for reader reactions and critiques.

Contributors to the volume and webspace represent the widest possible range of perspectives, regions and professions, from the global South and the North, from sharp critics to ardent supporters, from observers based in government, the private sector, civil society, universities and international organizations. The essays are grouped by broad category including Context and Setting; Critical Themes; Normative Frameworks; Voices and Participation; Globalization and Development; and Outcomes and Paths to Tunis. Contributors include McGill academics James Archibald and Marc Raboy, whose articles "Recognizing Cultural Diversity as a Dynamic Force in Cyberspace" (Archibald) and "The Origins of Civil Society Involvement in the WSIS" (Raboy) appear alongside those by other recognized experts such as Nancy J. Hafkin, Nicholas Negroponte, Hans Klein, Claudia Padovani, Derrick L. Cogburn, Anriette Esterhuysen and many others.

In order to further this reflection, ITID will be hosting a one-day seminar designed to deepen our understanding of the WSIS process and to chart the steps beyond the Tunis Summit.

Those interested in these issues are invited to participate in the online fora and read the online papers at

The printed volume may be ordered through the MIT Press at