Its not every day that you get the opportunity to meet Vint Cerf, Vice President and Chief Evangelist for Google, who- along with Bob Kahn- created the TCP/IP protocols and the architecture for what we know today as the internet.

We met with Vint at the PeaceTech Lab, along with a handful of other social enterprises that were supported by the PeaceTech Accelerator program. In addition to providing thoughtful advice to each company, Vint spoke with the Cognitiks team about the worrying trend of “closing digital space” by governments and private entities around the world. Given the role that the internet has played in promoting democracy, allowing civil society and human rights activists to collaborate and organize, this trend threatens access to information, and along with it social accountability and fundamental freedoms for citizens globally. We need to leverage opportunities he stressed for keeping digital resources accessible to all.

Following the ARPA “Internetting project” Vint’s work made the Internet a publicly accessible medium by expanding the  existing ARPANET connections between US government agencies, universities and defense contractors to public computers through a “network of networks”.  Since leaving DARPA in 1982 Vint has continued to work to ensure the Internet is a tool to improve people’s lives and livelihoods and that the Internet is a positive force for good with helping people achieve their goals and aspirations.

Cognitiks will shortly be announcing a new partnership to assist with the use of digital resources for ensuring open civic spaces and a thriving civil society. Check back here soon!