Afonso, Carlos

Rio de Janeiro, Technical Director of RIT (services and capacity-building network of ICTs)


Carlos Afonso has participated in the evolution of the new ICTs since their introduction in LAC region by promoting and defending the interests of the third sector.  He has a broad knowledge of ICT issues, and his experience is transversal to most of the issues related to ICTs: free software, digital inclusion, intellectual property, Internet governance, etc. Carlos Afonso is part of the RITS team, a NGO-oriented services and capacity-building network on information and communication technologies using the Internet as its main medium. In the late 60's he was an important person fighting against the dictatorship in Brazil.  He was in exile in Chile, Panama and Canada. This last country adopts him as a Canadian citizen.  During the re-democratisation process, Mr. Afonso worked for democratising the access to communications. The amnesty allowed him to return to Brazil.  Carlos Afonso and Herbert de Souza (known as Betihno) founded one of the most important Brazilian NGOs, the Brazilian Institute for Social and Economic Analysis, IBASE. Mr Afonso designed, implemented and managed the AlterNex project, the first computer-based communications and information system in Latin America dedicated to serve civil society organizations. He is a co-founder of the Association for Progressive Communications (APC). In 1991-1992, Mr Afonso proposed and coordinated the "UNCED Information Strategy Project in Rio" (UNCED ISP/Rio), first Internet project specifically developed for a UN conference. ISP/Rio's aims were to provide communications and information through the Internet so that organizations which had not been able to come to Rio was able to follow up on the events via the network.  Carlos Afonso is also an independent consultant of the UNDP, IDRC, among other organizations.  He is author of many books, articles and studies in different languages in relation to Internet development political and social issues. One of his fields of specialization and expertise is Internet Governance and ICANN.  Besides his technical knowledge, he has recognized intellectual and political autonomy and broad respect for his ethical and democratic behaviour.