As Amnesty International’s recent report on Nigeria has shown, there are many powerful ways in which information communication technology, including satellite imagery, has transformed human rights advocacy. They can be powerful tools in pushing for accountability for violations. However they also present new challenges—for example around issues such as verification--for those working in the field.
For the last five months, as part of its research theme on the Right to Life, CGHR has been working in collaboration with the UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, who will be presenting a report to the Human Rights Council on these questions later this year. In Michaelmas CGHR convened a small student team under the direction of CGHR Research Associates Ella McPherson and Thomas Probert, which has been providing invaluable assistance in the drafting of a discussion document on the subject. In February, CGHR will host a two-day meeting of international experts, to discuss this document and make recommendations to the Special Rapporteur.
On Tuesday 10 February, at 1pm, after the expert meeting has concluded, there will be a public panel discussion in room S1 of the Alison Richard Building, West Road, Cambridge. This will be an opportunity for a wider audience to engage with both practitioners and commentators and to explore these themes in greater depth. CGHR will also launch the online resource which the student research team as been developing--designed to be a one-stop survey of applications and processes which harness the potential of ICTs for human rights work.
The panel will include:
- Christof Heyns - UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions
- Christina Ribeiro - Investigation Coordinator, Office of the Prosecutor, International Criminal Court
- Christoph Koettl - designer and editor of Amnesty International's Citizen Evidence Lab
- Eliot Higgins - creator of the Brown Moses blog, investigating the conflict in Syria
- Ella McPherson - CGHR Research Associate (chair)