Digital Citizenship (Wednesday)

Creating an online environment the public can have confidence in

Stream Leader: Martin Cocker


A digital citizen is much more than somebody who knows how to be safe online.

A digital citizen is somebody who has all the skills and knowledge required to benefit from the opportunities of the digital age. We think of an ideal New Zealand Digital Citizen as having three things:

  • Digital Literacy
  • Cybersafety Skills and
  • Being committed to the the values of New Zealand society

Safety skills is part of the mix, because you can’t make the most of your online experience if you don’t know how to manage safety and security challenges. A good digital citizen will also make a positive contribution to their society.

Its not hard to see the value in having capable digital citizens. There are societal and economic benefits to having more capable Digital Citizens.

  • Digital Citizens are much more likely to engage with e-government initiatives in a meaningful way.
  • Digital Citizens are lower risk to engage with. This means Digital Citizens are cheaper and easier to engage with online. For an online business – capable Digital Citizens represent better ROI.
  • Capable Digital Citizens can create a stronger online community that is more resilient against criminals and those who would harm our society. They have the skills to protect more vulnerable members of the online community.


Cybersafety: Why do we care and why it’s important to you

Facilitator: Martin Cocker, Executive Director

Cybersafety and digital citizenship is not just a concern for families and the community, it also plays a critical role in government decision making to help develop a successful happy digital citizen.

The aim of this session is to provide an overview of the importance of cybersafety to New Zealanders via a diverse panel of experts. This interactive session will explore how cybersafety affects a range of organisations and government departments, and will seek participant experiences to understand the significance of cybersafety to all New Zealanders.

This session sets the scene for digital citizenship and outlines key cybersafety concepts and background applicable to other sessions in the stream. By attending you help contribute important discussion points to the cybersafety and digital citizenship agenda.

Combating Cyberbullying and Harassment

Facilitator: John Fenaughty, Research Manager

Research shows that cyberbullying is the most distressing challenge faced by young New Zealanders online – yet most manage this issue by ignoring it, a solution that never resolves the initial distress.

This session will actively seek to address who has a role in resolving this issue as well as understand the next steps for reducing and preventing the pain associated with this new phenomenon.

How can we work together to address this issue? What are you insights? Where do you see the gaps? Is it working? What messages do we need to get out? What should best practice look like in New Zealand?

Engaging Young People to ‘Like’ Cybersafety

Facilitator: John Fenaughty, Research Manager

With the growing diffusion of technology, young New Zealanders now live in a digital reality. This interactive session delves into the ways we can encourage them to be safe and secure online as well as understand how other areas engage young people in their goals. It also looks at how public health models may be applied to cybersafety and digital citizenship. What works? What doesn’t? Where are the gaps? How can we work together to ensure that young people are engaged and have a voice in making NZ cybersafe?

21st Century Parenting – What are the Challenges?

Facilitator: Lee Chisholm, Operations manager, NetSafe

From 2005, the phenomena of convergence and Web 2.0, enabled more cyber-activity, from more places, more often. This convenience is a huge part of the attaction of ICT for young people – it plays a key role in producing space from family and parents so they can differentiate and explore who they are.

With technology continuing to evolve parents sometimes do not understand or are unable to support their kids to be safe in cyberspace. On the flip side, others are so scared by the challenges they restrict technology access hoping this will keep their kids safe. However, we know this only serves to drive kids online behaviour underground – preventing parents from supporting kids to be safe. So what should parents do? How can we support parents to support their kids?

This session questions whether parents need specific technology skills to help their children manage online challenges as well as explores the ways we can work together to support parents to be confident about cyberspace and digital citizenship. Is it about engaging youth to teach their parents or is it about engaging wh?nau and family? Should parents attend ‘ante-teenage’ classes?

Digital Citizenship Stream Sponsor