B. UNESCO International Information for All Program (IFAP)

It was established in 2001 as the basis for international discussions on political, legal, ethical and social problems associated with building the global information society, as well as for the preparation of projects aimed at providing universal access to information.

The Program objectives are formulated as follows:

  • a platform creation for universal access to information;
  • participation in creating the elements of the global information society;  
  • analysis of the ethical, legal and other social consequences of the development of information and communication technologies;
  • a framework creation for the international and regional cooperation;  
  • development of common strategies, methods and tools needed to build a legal and free information society.  

In accordance with the mandate of UNESCO IFAP is to play a key role in the implementation of UNESCO policies - to widely promote the “education for all”, the free exchange of information and knowledge, the reduction of the gap between the information rich and poor countries.

In October 2008, the 180th Session of the UNESCO Executive Board approved the IFAP Strategic Action Plan for 2008-2013, under which the program operates on 5 priorities:

  • information for development;
  • information literacy ;  
  • information preservation;
  • information ethics;  
  • information accessibility.  

The election of Russia to the Intergovernmental Council for IFAP in 2009 gave new impetus to our cooperation with UNESCO in the field of information. The Russian Committee for the Information for All Program (RC IFAP), established under the Commission of the Russian Federation for UNESCO, became the Coordinator of the activity in Russia in this direction. Chairman of the Russian Committee of the UNESCO Information for All Program is Y.I.Kuzmin (member of the Commission of the Russian Federation for UNESCO).

RC IFAP took over the coordination of discussion in Russia of the draft recommendations of UNESCO “Recommendation concerning the Promotion and Use of Multilingualism and Universal Access to Cyberspace”, and also got the Russian experts involved in the work on the UNESCO draft Charter on the Preservation of Digital Heritage.

Since 2007, the working body of the Russian Committee for the UNESCO Information for All Program is the Interregional Center of Library Cooperation public organization.

Within the framework of IFAP with the participation of experts from UNESCO a series of international conferences was organized on the formation of national and international information policy, issues of access to information, ethical and legal aspects of the Internet use.

Thanks to the participation of Russia in the Intergovernmental Council for IFAP Russia's experience in creating a system of public access to legal information received international acclaim and recognition. Opening of the centers of legal and business information in Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan and other countries is an important step towards the development of interstate cooperation within the framework of UNESCO to establish an effective mechanism for ensuring access to information for citizens.

Significance for Russia:
• Cooperation on issues of the information society formation provides an opportunity to promote Russia's experience abroad, using Russia’s enormous potential in the field of communication and information.

On December 7-8, 2009 the First Meeting of the Program National Committees took place in Moscow, where the UNESCO recommendations were discussed on the establishment of national policies and strategies in the field of information society.