Automation, fragmentation, governance: The Future Internet between Business-as-usual and disruption?
Opportunities, risks and options for upcoming Internet development
Expert roundtable, Wednesday 25 September, 2019 – Eco, Lichtstraße 43h, 50825 Köln
Networking is the basic principle of this decade, at the same time a motive and driver for the
majority of all current research and innovation, new business models and social developments. While the main technical performance parameters continuously evolve, the framework for these developments has become more fragile – key players are changing, old-fashioned technologies are increasingly viewed critically, and states are intervening and "censorship" is an increasingly common vocabulary.
The beautiful new world of the Future Internet can be described by more and more FTTH,
high mobile bandwidths, low latency and more and more network automation, but also the
wide availability of digital infrastructure such as clouds or even AI-on-demand.
In order to get a balanced picture, the upcoming Expert Roundtable on the Future internet, but also other perspectives: there is talk of increasing fragmentation, at least at the regional level, and perhaps even the development of separate Internet networks worldwide; talk of increasingly oligopolistic, even monopolistic platforms; and the problem of social media [and content regulation]. But what impact does it have on Internet governance when algorithms influence management, assign preferred routes and even filter what we see? What private and state influences is the Internet in the future exposed to? Who will set the rules in the future and monitor compliance? What will be able to do if someone doesn't follow the rules?
And the legal framework also fragments: Some experts see the Internet as an innovative, often lawless space, while others swear that it should be treated through traditional, established legal principles. This concerns various infringements on the Internet, such as trademark infringements, theft of ideas and piracy – and the different ways in which such violations at the legal and political level in different regions of the world.
After a series of conferences and roundtables looking at the recent experience in broadband fixed and mobile networks, Smart Networks, Internet Governance and Next-Generation Networks, the organisers want to tap into where it all could go in the future....