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9th June 2020

IIC US CHAPTER WEBINAR: Cybersecurity at the United Nations

Chapter event, Virtual Event

Date: Tuesday 9 June 2020
Time: 1100 – 1200 EDT / 1600 BST / 2300 HKT

The United Nations has become one of the key intergovernmental bodies, where cybersecurity, cybercrime and Internet governance are being discussed, sometimes in the same conversation. In this 1-hour discussion we will explain what’s happening at the UN, and why it is important for all stakeholders. We will place it in proper context, share what it means, outline recent work, and point to where all this might lead.

Speakers will include Veni Markovski from ICANN, Vice-President, UN Engagement (New York) and Dr. James A. Lewis, Sr. Vice President and the Director of the Technology and Public Policy Program, Center for Strategic and International Studies (Wash, D.C).

Audience Questions

We very much welcome questions from the audience after the panel have finished speaking, but due to the expected number of participants these are limited to a maximum of two per delegate and must be submitted in advance by email to Shermin Ali. Please send questions by 10.00am BST Tuesday 9 June.


Dr James A Lewis
James A. Lewis (Dr) Sr. Vice President and the Director of the Technology and Public Policy Program, Center for Strategic and International Studies (Wash, D.C)

James Andrew Lewis is a senior vice president and director of the Technology Policy Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). He has authored numerous publications on the relationship between technology, innovation, and national power. His current research examines international security and governance in cyberspace, the geopolitics of innovation, the future of warfare, and the effect of the internet on politics. Dr Lewis is an internationally recognized expert on cybersecurity and technology and was one of the first to approach cybersecurity as a policy and strategic problem. His writings include the best-selling Cybersecurity for the 44th Presidency, the national cybersecurity strategy cited by President Obama in the first speech by a U.S. president on cybersecurity and that became a template for cyber strategy in other countries. Lewis was the rapporteur for the United Nations' successful 2010, 2013, and 2015 Group of Government Experts on Information Security, whose reports set out the global agenda for cybersecurity by emphasizing norms for responsible state behavior, confidence building, and capacity-building measures.

Before joining CSIS, Dr Lewis worked at the Departments of State and Commerce as a foreign service officer and as a member of the Senior Executive Service. His government experience included a range of politico-military and negotiating assignments, including the development of groundbreaking policies on commercial remote sensing, encryption, and advanced conventional weapons. He was assigned as a political advisor to the U.S. Southern Command for Operation Just Cause, the U.S. Central Command for Operation Desert Shield, and the Central American Task Force. Dr Lewis served on the U.S. delegations to the Cambodian peace process and the Permanent Five talks on arms transfers and nonproliferation, and he negotiated bilateral agreements on transfers of military technology to Asia and the Middle East. He led the U.S. delegation to the Wassenaar Arrangement Experts Group on advanced civilian and military technologies. Lewis led a long-running Track 2 dialogue on cybersecurity with the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations. He has served as a member of the Commerce Spectrum Management Advisory Committee, the Advisory Committee on International Communications and Information Policy, and the Advisory Committee on Commercial Remote Sensing and as an advisor to government agencies on the security and intelligence implications of foreign investment in the United States. Dr Lewis is frequently quoted in the media and has testified numerous times before Congress. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago.

Veni Markovski
Veni Markovski Vice-President, UN Engagement (New York), ICANN

Veni Markovski is based in New York, and is responsible for the relations with the United Nations, the UN Agencies in New York, and the Permanent Missions to the United Nations.

Mr Markovski has graduated law, but before that, back in September 1990 he started his work on the Internet, as a system operator of the first Sofia-based bulletin-board system, part of FidoNet.

In 1993 Mr. Markovski formed with another of the Bulgarian Internet pioneers, Mr. Dimitar Ganchev, their company - bol.bg, the first commercial Internet service provider in Sofia, the capital of Bulgaria. Mr Markovski was President and CEO of bol.bg for nine years. The two owners sold the company successfully in 2008 to an international investment fund.

In 1995 he co-founded the Bulgarian Internet Society, a non-profit, of which he serves as President and chairman of the Board.

In March 2002 Mr. Markovski was appointed as Chairman of the Bulgarian President's IT Advisory Council, a position he held until the President stepped down from office at the end of his second term on January 22, 2012.

In 2005 he was invited to be the senior international projects adviser to the chairman of the governmental Agency for Information Technologies and communications, a position that he held until 2009. He was also adviser to the Bulgarian national cybersecurity coordinator from 2009 till 2013.

Since the beginning of his career, Mr Markovski has been involved in different international organizations and programs on different levels - as project manager, adviser, senior adviser, advocate for policy changes, mediator, board member, etc. He has served on the Boards of CPSR, ISOC, ICANN, among others.

Widely recognized as a computer geek and expert in cyber, Mr. Markovski is a frequent speaker at international conferences, and is often being approached for advice by companies, organizations, and governments.


Andrew Haire Vice President, International Institute of Communications

Andy Haire became Vice President for the Americas of the IIC two years ago. He is also Chair of the IIC's USA Chapter.

Mr Haire has been associated with some of the industry’s most successful telecom initiatives and his portfolio includes architecting major policy frameworks in the telecoms, technology, and postal sectors, as well as serving as regulator and ICT policy for 10 years at Singapore’s IDA, soon after its inception in the year 2000.

Previously, his experience included senior management roles with regulatory and public policy portfolios at one of the world’s largest telecom operators and before that, various engineering and management positions at the world’s largest computer company.

Mr Haire holds a degree in engineering in the United States, and attended the advanced management program from Harvard University.

Event details
9th June 2020
Online Meeting
Governance, Privacy, Safety, Security
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