Technology Tools in Human Rights (2016)

CGHR Practitioner Paper #3

This report by the Engine Room, with the support of OAK Foundation, has been cross-posted from its original publication here. Author Zara Rahman summarises the report:

‘Over the past few years, we have been witnessing a wave of new technology tools for human rights documentation. Along with the arrival of the new tools, human rights defenders are facing  new tools, new possibilities, new challenges, and new expectations of human rights documentation initiatives. 

Produced with support from the Oak Foundation, this report is designed as a first attempt to detail available technologies that are designed for human rights documentation, understand the various perspectives on the challenges human rights

documentation initiatives face when adopting new tools and practices, and analyse what is working and what is not for human rights documentation initiatives seeking to integrate new tools in their work.’

The majority of this report’s insights come from two series of interviews: sixteen conducted between February and April 2016, funded by the Oak Foundation, and 20 related to our work producing DatNav in partnership with Amnesty International and Benetech. These interviews were supplemented by our desk research on tool functionality and other case studies. Our sample size is far too small to make claims about the sector as a whole, but we hope to carry out future research that enables broader conclusions.