The Carr Center for Human Rights Policy serves as the hub of the Harvard Kennedy School’s research, teaching, and training in the human rights domain. The center embraces a dual mission: to educate students and the next generation of leaders from around the world in human rights policy and practice; and to convene and provide policy-relevant knowledge to international organizations, governments, policymakers, and businesses.

 

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Latest Publications

Humanitarian Digital Ethics: A Foresight and Decolonial Governance Approach

Citation:

Aarathi Krishnan. 1/20/2022. “Humanitarian Digital Ethics: A Foresight and Decolonial Governance Approach.” Carr Center Discussion Paper Series. Publisher's Version
Humanitarian Digital Ethics: A Foresight and Decolonial Governance Approach

Abstract:

Just as rights are not static, neither is harm. The humanitarian system has always been critiqued as arguably colonial and patriarchal. As these systems increasingly intersect with Western, capitalist technology systems in the race of “for good” technology, how do governance systems ethically anticipate harm, not just now but into the future? Can humanitarian governance systems design mitigation or subversion mechanisms to not lock people into future harm, future inequity, or future indebtedness because of technology design and intervention? Instead of looking at digital governance in terms of control, weaving in foresight and decolonial approaches might liberate our digital futures so that it is a space of safety and humanity for all, and through this, birth new forms of digital humanism. 

Read the paper.
author/date: Aarathi Krishnan | Jan 10 2022
teaser text: How do governance systems build a digital future that is a space of safety and humanity for all?
Last updated on 01/20/2022

Companies as Courts? Google's Role Deciding Digital Human Rights Outcomes in the Right to be Forgotten

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Abstract:

One of the unwritten rules of the internet is that it was designed to never forget, a feature associated with emerging privacy harms from the availability of personal information captured online. Before the advent of search engines, discovering personal histories would have required hours of sifting through library records. Search engines present the opportunity to find immense amounts of personal details within seconds through a few simple keystrokes. When individuals experience privacy harms, they have limited recourse to demand changes from firms, as platform companies are in the business of making information more accessible.

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author/date: Rachel Ann Hulvey | Jan 10 2022
teaser text: One of the unwritten rules of the internet is that it was designed to never forget, but this creates challenges for individuals who experience privacy harms and find they have limited recourse to demand changes.
Last updated on 01/11/2022

Black Lives Matter: Power, Perception, and Press

Citation:

Teresa Chen. 12/17/2021. “Black Lives Matter: Power, Perception, and Press.” Topol Fellow Discussion Paper. Publisher's Version
21_chen_topol_paper.pdf1.2 MB
Black Lives Matter: Power, Perception, and Press

Abstract:

Our national reckoning with racism and police brutality, long in the making, was not inevitable. Activists and community leaders had to not only organize an effective, lasting movement against racist brutality carried out by the police but also navigate the media portrayal of the Black Lives Matter movement. The BLM movement forced the American public to see the dots and acknowledge the pattern of senseless violence carried out by the police against the black community. In so doing, the movement created the largest civil resistance campaign in American history, with millions of people across the country and around the world joining the protests.

Read the paper.
author/date: Teresa Chen | Dec 17 2021
teaser text: The BLM movement created the largest civil resistance campaign in American history, with millions of people across the country and around the world joining the protests.
Last updated on 12/17/2021
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Upcoming Events

2022 Feb 03

Artificial Intelligence and the Past, Present and Future of Democracy

4:00pm to 5:00pm

Location: 

Virtual Event (Registration Required)

Towards Life 3.0: Ethics and Technology in the 21st Century is a talk series organized and facilitated by Dr. Mathias Risse, Director of the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy, and Berthold Beitz Professor in Human Rights, Global Affairs, and Philosophy. Drawing inspiration from the title of Max Tegmark’s book, Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence, the series draws upon a range of scholars, technology leaders, and public interest technologists to address the ethical aspects of the long-term impact of artificial intelligence on society and...

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2022 Feb 15

Shrinking Civic Space in Africa: Lessons from Uganda

4:00pm to 5:00pm

Location: 

Virtual Event (Registration Required)

In this talk, Nicholas Opiyo — Carr Center Fellow, Scholar at Risk, and Human Rights Lawyer in Uganda — will analyze and explore the state arguments that have been made for limitations on the civic space in Africa. Throughout the discussion, he will trace relevant trends and examine the role of the international community in Africa’s political spheres. Noting that there are possible ways to push back against the shrinking of civic space, Opiyo will suggest new ways for civil society to organize effectively. 

Panelists: 

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2022 Feb 17

Human Rights and the Smart City

4:00pm to 5:00pm

Location: 

Virtual Event (Registration Required)

Towards Life 3.0: Ethics and Technology in the 21st Century is a talk series organized and facilitated by Dr. Mathias Risse, Director of the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy, and Berthold Beitz Professor in Human Rights, Global Affairs, and Philosophy. Drawing inspiration from the title of Max Tegmark’s book, Life 3.0: Being Human in the Age of Artificial Intelligence, the series draws upon a range of scholars, technology leaders, and public interest technologists to address the ethical aspects of the long-term impact of artificial intelligence on society and...

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“The Carr Center is building a bridge between ideas on human rights and the practice on the ground. Right now we are at a critical juncture. The pace of technological change and the rise of authoritarian governments are both examples of serious challenges to the flourishing of individual rights. It’s crucial that Harvard and the Kennedy School continue to be a major influence in keeping human rights ideals alive. The Carr Center is a focal point for this important task.”

 

- Mathias Risse