From 5-7 October 2016 organisations from all over Asia participated in the Regional Meeting for the Association for Progressive Communications (APC) in Dhaka, Bangladesh. This meeting aimed to strengthen APC’s regional strategy for 2017 and beyond.
One of the key points that arose was attempting to find a better way for collaboration between APC members in the Asia region. The participants were also concerned with how this regional collaboration on technology and information can cover gender and sexuality challenges that are specific to particular countries. These points will continue to be discussed in the APC Paper about Theory of Change and Strategy for 2016-2019.
In discussing cutting-edge technology participants raised concern about problems of access to information and technology in the Asia regions. There was discussion about the social and economic costs of network shutdowns on freedoms and human rights in the Indian subcontinent. APC also endeavoured to develop a framework on last-mile access to examine which countries do not allow community networks, an issue faced in Argentina and which are wireless, like Nepal.
The participants also explored the possibilities of holding a national school for internet governance in Asia so that any member can replicate this in their home country. There was also suggestions to facilitate participation in the design of digital rights camps in South East Asia or more widely, South Asia.
The meeting was closed by a short conference with Bangladesh Minister of Information & Communication Technologies and received a lot of coverage from the Bangladeshi media.