On February 11, 2015 the presidents of the Knight Foundation, Open Society Foundations, MacArthur Foundation, Mozilla Foundation, and Ford Foundation came together with leading figures from government, philanthropy, business, and the tech world to launch a major new partnership, explore shared principles, and get ambitious about the next generation of innovation for social change and progress.


Watch highlights from NetGain. Scroll down for more videos from the day.


The NetGain Challenge

We need everyone’s help to identify the biggest challenges that lie ahead of us. How do we balance security and privacy? How will we connect the entire world’s population? How will we archive all information and make this knowledge accessible? How can technology make democracies more participatory and responsive? Find out more about The NetGain Partnership.



Medium, February 12: “The Future of the Internet Might Hinge on this Bet,” by Susan Crawford:
"Here’s a metaphor that fits this moment: we are in a battle for the future of the Internet. The foundations are mobilizing, calling in the troops, and planning to work on the front lines. It’s an effort that is remarkable in its scope."

Chronicle of Philanthropy, February 11: “Philanthropy Must Jump-Start a Digital Revolution for the Common Good,” by Alberto Ibargüen, Mark Surman, and Darren Walker
"Philanthropy cannot sit on the sidelines in the battle over net neutrality. Key public-policy decisions being made in the coming years will determine whether our digital public square is accessible for decades to come."


About the event

The Internet has transformed how we work, learn, and express ourselves. It has connected us with each other and sparked bold thinking about how to create a more fair and just world. Building that better world—and living in it—depends on an open, secure, and equitable Internet.

What is philanthropy’s role in addressing the challenges and potential of our digital society? Can we collaborate, as we have in the past on other crucial issues, to bend the arc of progress and ensure that everyone shares in the tremendous opportunity the Internet offers? Have we thought big—really big—about what the digital revolution can mean for the common good?

Read the press release

9:45 a.m. 

Darren Walker President, Ford Foundation

9:45–10:00 a.m. 
Keynote Address: New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio

10:00–10:45 a.m. 
The Internet, Philanthropy, and Progress: Principles for Future Work
  Read the principles
Introduction by Jenny Toomey Director, Internet Rights, Ford Foundation
Mitchell Baker Executive Chairwoman, Mozilla Foundation 
Chris Stone President, Open Society Foundations
Darren Walker President, Ford Foundation
Moderator Gwen Ifill Managing Editor, Washington Week

11:00 am–12:20 p.m. 
NetGain Challenges

Hosted by 
John Palfrey Head of School, Phillips Academy, Andover
Ethan Zuckerman Director, MIT Center for Civic Media

Ethan Zuckerman Director, MIT Center for Civic Media 
Emily Bell Director, Tow Center for Digital Journalism, Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism
Alicia Garza Co-founder, #BlackLivesMatter; Special Projects Director, National Domestic Workers Alliance 
Sunil Abraham Executive Director, Centre for Internet & Society
Chip Pickering CEO, Comptel
Laura Poitras Filmmaker, CITIZENFOUR 
Chris Soghoian Principal Technologist, Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project, ACLU
Brewster Kahle Digital Librarian and Founder, Internet Archive
Joi Ito Director, MIT Media Lab

12:45–1:30 p.m. 
Lunch Discussion: Celebrating 25 Years of the World Wide Web

Introduction by Alberto Ibargüen President and CEO, Knight Foundation
Tim Berners-Lee Inventor, World Wide Web
Susan Crawford Co-director, Berkman Center for Internet & Society, Harvard University

2:00–4:30 p.m. 
CITIZENFOUR Screening and Discussion

Introduction by Eric Sears Program Officer, Human Rights, MacArthur Foundation
Laura Poitras Filmmaker, CITIZENFOUR 
Ben Wizner Director, Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project, ACLU
Moderator Brian Lehrer Host, The Brian Lehrer Show, WNYC 

  • Creativity and Free Expression

  • Internet Freedom

More from this Event