Rinalia Abdul Rahim

Rinalia Abdul Rahim

Senior Vice President, Strategy, Communications and Engagement

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Rinalia Abdul Rahim joined the Internet Society in January 2019 as Senior Vice President of Strategy and Implementation. She is responsible for the coordination of key resources to effect the Internet Society’s strategic goals and objectives.

She has 20 years of global experience in ICT for Development (ICT4D) on issues relating to access, empowerment and governance. She also brings significant experience in the leadership and governance of global institutions with public interest orientation.

Between 2011-2017 she focused on Internet matters at the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN). After engaging on Internet end user issues, she was elected to the ICANN Board of Directors for a 3-year term by the global community of Internet end users (At-Large). During this period she oversaw the stewardship transition of the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA), which established ICANN as an independent entity. Concurrently, she led efforts to enhance ICANN’s organizational effectiveness and to include Jawi in the Arabic Script Repertoire for the Root Zone in support of a multilingual Internet.

Between 2001-2008 she was Executive Director of the Global Knowledge Partnership (GKP) where she positioned GKP as the world’s leading multistakeholder initiative in ICT for Development. She brought diverse stakeholders together to explore collaboration-based solutions to various issues including poverty, education, and the empowerment of women and youth. She also established high impact programs and networks for sharing knowledge, building partnerships and spreading best practices in every region. At the World Summit on the Information Society in 2003, the GKP presented innovations from the multistakeholder collaborations of more than 250 organizations based in 80 countries around the world.

Between 1998-2001 she developed national ICT policies, strategies and programmes for the Malaysian government. Some of these initiatives were highlighted by UN agencies as best practices in Asia, Africa and the Middle East. Subsequently the Prime Minister appointed her to Malaysia’s National Information Technology Council. At the same time she served on the Council of Wawasan Open University for 5 years during its startup phase. In 2013 she was elected to the Executive Council of the Internet Society Malaysia Chapter.

She has held various advisory positions with international and regional entities/initiatives such as Mozilla Foundation, Global Action Network, World Economic Forum-UNESCO Partnership for Education initiative, United Nations Global Alliance for ICT and Development (UNGAID), International Task Force on Women and ICT, Youth Social Enterprise Initiative, UNDP’s Asia Pacific Development Information Programme, and the World Summit on the Information Society’s ICT for Development Platform.

She holds a Master in Public Policy Degree from Harvard University (USA) and a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science from Princeton University (USA). She is certified in Corporate Governance by INSEAD (France).

She is fluent in English, Mandarin and Bahasa Malaysia, and is currently learning German.

She grew up in Malaysia and has lived in the USA, Singapore, Hong Kong, China and Germany. She is primarily based in Kuala Lumpur.

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