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Knowledge Society Agency (UMIC)
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Forum for the Information Society

 - 08/03/2006

The Forum for the Information Society is a consultation and coordinating body for public policy development for the information society and brings together the main social, public and private stakeholders. It is open to the general public via interactive means.

The Forum for the Information Society’s creation was provided for in the Connecting Portugal Programme that was approved at the end of July 2005, making use of a policy of broad consultation and coordination as had been used for information society policies between 1997 and 2001.

The Forum for the Information Society (text in Portuguese) first meeting was held on 10th March 2006 at the Aveiro Parque de Exposições. The opening session was chaired by the Minister for Science, Innovation and Higher Education and the closing session was presided over by the Prime Minister.

The Forum for the Information Society’s launch is an important initiative provided for in the Connecting Portugal programme, which is part of the Technological Plan. The Forum for the Information Society’s objective is to ensure the relevant public and private stakeholders for the Information Society in Portugal participate regularly and stimulate debate, exchange experiences and benchmark public policies. The country’s development in this and other areas requires broad participation platforms that promote working through networks and co-building joint goals.

The Connecting Portugal programme consists of international benchmarking actions, targets and objectives. The current state of play will be presented and discussed at the Forum, based on the most recent national and international data on the country’s development in the main aspects of the Information Society.

For example, broadband Internet access in the population rose 43 per cent in Portugal over 2005. Other updated indicators show that 83 per cent of higher education establishments are already covered by wireless networks (Virtual Campus) and all Portuguese public authorities have Internet connections, of which 73 per cent have broadband. As regards the Portal do Cidadão (Citizen's Portal), traffic increased by 46 per cent last year. There were 191,000 visitors from 33 countries in January 2006.

The Forum will also discuss the changes and actions in progress in different sectors, from ecommerce to training and qualifications and from egovernment to social inclusion and job creation. The topics of regulation and competition will also be discussed, as will new perspectives and opportunities for information technologies.

The Forum, whose closing session will be attended by the Prime Minister, will also be the stage for the signing of the agreement between the Portuguese Government and Carnegie-Mellon University in the scope of the new international partnerships for Science and Technology and Higher Education.

UMIC will sign an agreement on freeware use with the Sun Microsystems company at another point during the event.

Last updated ( 06/10/2011 )