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About Internet Society 2 March 2020

Internet Society Ethiopia Chapter Launched Today!

Adugna Necho
By Adugna NechoHardware and Networking Department Chair, Electrical and Computer Engineering Faculty, Bahir Dar University

We are excited about the momentum behind Ethiopia.

It is a rare moment in any country’s history to undergo such a positive transformation. It’s a time of immense optimism and investment potential. It’s not a surprise as the country also has one of the fastest-growing economies in the region, is strategically placed, and has a young population of over 105 million – half of whom are under the age of 18.

While we’ve been active in the Internet world for many years, the time to start a Chapter in Ethiopia is absolutely now. With that, let me share our “why” and introduce ourselves.

We are the Internet Society Ethiopia Chapter.

The idea of starting an Internet Society Chapter came to us during a workshop in the city of Bahir Dar, where we became conscious of the fact that more than 85% of the Ethiopia population is losing countless opportunities every day because they don’t have access to the Internet. We believe the Internet is for everyone and we are here to work with all people – from communities to businesses to governments and ordinary people to connect the unconnected and create a bigger and stronger Internet in Ethiopia. What drives us is reliable and affordable Internet access everywhere in Ethiopia.

The fact that we are local gives us the insight and expertise to create solutions that last for Ethiopia and that are in line with part of Ethiopia’s digital transformation strategy.

Here is how we work:

We are a national nonprofit organization under Ethiopia law and as a chartered Chapter of the Internet Society. We are here to serve all its members in Ethiopia while sharing the vision of the Internet Society: The Internet is for Everyone.

Our mission? To promote the development and use of the Internet as a resource to enrich people’s life across the country. The Chapter will also aim to support the advancement of Internet policies, standards, and future development.

The Internet Society Ethiopia Chapter envisions serving Internet stakeholders in the country (academia, the technical community, government, the private sector, and civil society) through raising and addressing critical issues related to the Internet. The Chapter is using a multistakeholder approach to ensure the participation of all Internet stakeholders.

Our Chapter is ready to work with people across Ethiopia to ensure an open, secure, trustworthy, and affordable Internet for everyone here. You do not need a technical background to do it.Just be you and willing to add your expertise into the mix.

We are here to help.

Here is what we will be working on:

Introduce and promote the Internet Society’s vision and mission in Ethiopia: Advocate and mobilize for the development and expansion of open, secure, trustworthy, and affordable Internet access to all in the country and inform Internet and related policies through research and development.

Here is how you can take part:

There are a variety of ways one can participate through sharing expertise, capacity building, and working in teams on a community-level project.

We strongly encourage organizations and partners to contribute to its works and activities by supporting local initiatives that aim at advancing the lives of the Ethiopian people.

Get to know us at this incredible moment in time. Together we can promote the development of the Internet and support the advancement of Internet policies, standards, and future development in Ethiopia!

Watch the Chapter launch then follow us on Twitter and Facebook!

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Disclaimer: Viewpoints expressed in this post are those of the author and may or may not reflect official Internet Society positions.

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