5th Annual Workshop of the IGF.DC.IOT

The meeting took place on 24 and 25 July 2015.

Please find the resulting Draft Statement DC IoT to IGF, Good Practice Paper, as of June 2016, for download as PDF-File or as editable Word-File here.


5th Annual Workshop of the IGF Dynamic Coalition on the Internet of Things (IGF.DC.IOT)

Dresden Hilton Hotel, July 24-25, 2015


Our sponsors in 2015:
Afilias Global Registry Services
VeriSign Authentication Services
IoT European Research Cluster
eco Verband der deutschen Internetwirtschaft e. V.

Internet of Things going ethical

“Networked technology is spreading rapidly from traditional devices to everyday items, and even to the spaces in which we live. Before long, online functionality will be ubiquitous in the most commonplace objects, allowing them to identify, communicate and cooperate with one another.” As was recognized during the World Economic Forum in January 2015, the “phenomenon known as the ‘Internet of Things’” will touch all. And whereas this brings many promises for a future that is yet to unfold, it also comes with challenges, in particular related to security, safety, and governance. And to the trust of people.
During the meeting in Istanbul the following issues were put on the table (see meeting report): the need to ensure privacy, security, ethics, and spectrum issues, and to develop standards that take both social and economic sustainability of networks into account. Networks should be developed in a way people want (people centric values) and in such a way that upgrades, changes of services providers and new applications are possible and affordable.
Since, the discussion focused most on security and privacy, but above all: about ensuring IoT is to contribute to a “world we want our children to live in”. In this, the term “Internet of Things” has been confusing for some, yet in the understanding of most people participating to the DC IoT discussions it embraces “everything that is connected” (and not human). It will be important to open doors to other communities which are currently not involved but have similar discussions of cross cutting issues.
For 2015, we propose to focus on “IoT going ethical” as to find a sustainable way ahead that would help create this “world we want our children to live in”. For this, we build on the following assumptions:

  • “IoT” is a global thing
    • hence it will be used in different parts of the world, with different legislations, cultures, values, habits;
    • no way (global, or the sum of individual nations’) legislations will be able to provide a framework we can rely on for protecting society;
  • IoT is something we *need* in order to deal with a number of societal challenges, ranging from social care, to agriculture, security and environmental sustainability;
  • IoT is currently unmanageable, and what little management there is neither security nor privacy-protecting – both important elements for ensuring justified trust in our connected environment;
  • IoT needs investments in innovation and deployment. Investors like to know that their investments will lead to products and services that are not countered by governments (illegal) or markets (seen as unsafe, unwanted, unethical).

“IoT going ethical” is the response to this, and you will want to be part of this:

  • As “IoT provider” it will be important that your product or service is “seen as ethical” in order to be wanted by the wider market. This comes with specific requirements to the design and development process as well as communications with the market;
  • as “government” you would want to make sure IoT developments are in line with the laws you have put in place to protect society. A clear example is the European privacy and data protection legislation, which has global impact on suppliers. At the same time you want the good things to happen – you know society needs it in order to deal with some societal challenges that we may not be able to deal with without “connected technologies”.
  • as “citizen/consumer” you would want to understand what is going on, in the realization that IoT is coming up, whether you want it or not. By being better informed you will have a voice (both in markets and elections) that matters … and it is foreseeable that citizens/consumers will want to be heard, more and more, over time. Similar challenges for civil society.

In addition to “going ethical” as a principle, we will continue to be confronted with the issue of interoperability. Next to “going ethical” ensuring the possibility to “link in” is an important condition in ensuring progressing IoT, world-wide. What role in this for open standards, and how will we deal with connectivity (and spectrum).
Last, but not least, we wonder what role there would be for domain names in an Internet of Things environment. Will it help us to better manage this IoT world which will include a lot of M2M communications? Both for organizing that pure M2M world and for people interaction with that world, domain names may fulfil an important role – and we look forward to a debate to further strengthen or debunk that thought.


Moderator: Maarten Botterman
Rapporteur: Avri Doria

Friday, July 24, 2015

12.30 Registration & Welcome Coffee
13.00 Opening, setting the scene
Wolfgang Kleinwächter
In this session we will refer back to where we come from, and where we are heading to, ensuring a common understanding of the agenda and a clear setting of intentions for the meeting. After opening by Wolfgang, setting us in history, and expressing his hope for the future, Maarten will take over as moderator and present the agenda, and invite all participants to shortly introduce themselves (name, affiliation), and what drives them to be here.
With a two minute clock this will take us through the first hour.

  1. Taking stock of progress made with IoT
  2. Setting the intentions for the meeting
  3. Participants‘ introductory round

14.00 Real life examples from different sectors
Emphasis in this round is on “grounding” the debate, to make sure “practice” and “people” are our reference for moving forward. In the full realization that the world is developing as we speak, and we could and should learn from that.


  1. Homes (architecture, services)
  2. Cities (smart grid, public service delivery, private sector opportunities)
  3. Other examples

15.00 Coffee
15.30 Hard issues identification and prioritization
There are many issues of concern, and some of these need to be tackled at global level. In preparation for the workshop we selected 7 subjects to be discussed. In order to ensure all subjects receive the best possible treatment, and to ensure all knowledge around the table gets the space to be expressed, we will divide participants in 4 groups, each group to discuss all subjects, spending as much or little time per subject as the group feels has merit, within a total timeframe of 90 minutes. We divide the participants in 4 groups A, B, C, and D, and ask each group to start with a different subject on the list, and follow the list. Group A (Wolfgang) starts with subject 1, group B (Sandra) with subject 3, group C (Avri) with subject 5, and group D (Dan) with subject 7. Each of the groups appoints a presenter to present the results back to the plenary session.
Candidate subjects:

  1. Privacy and data protection issues (value of data and balance between public and private interests?)
  2. Security and safety issues (different security levels for different applications?)
  3. Investments in societal applications, access to services (global south view?)
  4. Transparency of technology and services (open source and its merits and dangers?)
  5. Ensuring global interoperability (necessity and development of global standards?)
  6. Role of Domain names (what role could the DNS play to organize IoT)
  7. Connectivity and spectrum choices (how to prevent running into a wall of lost and uncertain connectivity quality?)

17.00 Reporting back by rapporteurs per Group, and discussion
Reporting back from the four groups, per subject. Not all groups will have discussed all subjects, but following the presentation of a subject, all groups will react/add their thinking on that subject. Group A will lead the reporting on subject 1 and 2, Group B will lead the reporting on subject 3 and 4, Group C will lead the reporting on subject 5 and 6, and Group D the reporting on subject 7.
18.00 latest – End of Day 1
19.00 Joint Dinner

Saturday, July 25, 2015

9.00 Ethical approaches to technology design
Up to today, IoT investments and innovations are mainly business driven, with a very limited involvement of citizens/consumers and politicians.
Moving forward, it is clear that all stakeholders need to take their responsibility to ensure that IoT is a contribution to a world we want our children to live in, as well as justification of investments in IoT to be paying off in the long run, in a sustainable way. As explained in the background paper, four factors seem to be central in this. Do/Can we take these factors into account while innovating and developing our IoT systems and services?

  1. Transparency (clear what the purpose is, what data are collected, where they come from, how they are stored, used, and shared?)
  2. Accountability (clear who is responsible for what part of the system and/or process?)
  3. Individual choice (ability to make choices, depending on different legal framework, culture, habit and personal preference?)
  4. Common provisions (what elements should we be able to count on, e.g. Asimov’s Laws of Robotics?)

10.30 Coffee
11.00 Action agenda towards IGF Brazil
Purpose of the meeting is to build up towards proposing a good practice framework for IoT from a global perspective. Intent is to propose such a framework to the IGF Plenary meeting in 2016. In Brazil, during IGF 2015, we intent to present the why of why such a framework for IoT is important, the what of what should be in such a framework, as we understand today, and the how: how we intent to get to that paper, in interaction with the world. The work done up to this point is in this the starting point: what are the next steps to be?
12.30 Lunch
13.30 Conclusions day 1 and 2 (plenary moderated discussion)
Looking back to the discussions over last 24 hours, what did we learn? Developing joint conclusions and recommendations, and formulating the message to the IGF in Joao Pessoa.
15.00 Closing remarks

(Status: July, 19, 2015)