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

Digital Identity in the Migration & Refugee Context: Italy Case Study

Citation:

Mark Latonero, Keith Hiatt, Antonella Napolitano, Giulia Clericetti, and Melanie Penagos. 4/2019. Digital Identity in the Migration & Refugee Context: Italy Case Study. Data & Society. Data & Society. See full text.
Digital Identity in the Migration & Refugee Context: Italy Case Study

Abstract:

New Report by Carr Center Technology and Human Rights Fellow Mark Latonero.

"Increasingly, governments, corporations, international organizations, and nongov-ernmental organizations (NGOs) are seeking to use digital technologies to track the identities of migrants and refugees. This surging interest in digital identity technologies would seem to meet a pressing need: the United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) states that in today’s modern world, lacking proof of identity can limit a person’s access to services and socio-economic participation, including employment opportunities, housing, a mobile phone, and a bank account. But this report argues that the tech-nologies and processes involved in digital identity will not provide easy solutions in the migration and refugee context. Technologies that rely on identity data introduce a new sociotechnical layer that may exacerbate existing biases, discrimination, or power imbalances.How can we weigh the added value of digital identification systems against the potential risks and harms to migrant safety and fundamental human rights? This report provides international organizations, policymakers, civil society, technologists, and funders with a deeper background on what we currently know about digital identity and how migrant identity data is situated in the Italian context. "
: Mark Latonero et al. | Apr 2019
: Increasingly, governments, corporations, international organizations, and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) are seeking to use digital technologies to track the identities of migrants and refugees.
Last updated on 02/03/2020

Big Tech Firms are Racing to Track Climate Refugees

Citation:

Mark Latonero. 5/17/2019. “Big Tech Firms are Racing to Track Climate Refugees.” MIT Technology Review. See full text.
Big Tech Firms are Racing to Track Climate Refugees

Abstract:

The MIT Technology Review features new report by Carr Center Technology and Human Rights Fellow Mark Latonero.

"Simply layering technology on top of existing humanitarian problems tends to exacerbate the issues it intended to resolve. In a new report on the role of digital identity in refugee and migrant contexts, a team of researchers at the Data & Society Research Institute, led by Mark Latonero, detail the various ways these initiatives can reproduce and worsen existing bureaucratic biases."

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/613531/big-tech-firms-are-racing-to-track-climate-refugees/

: Mark Latonero | May 17 2019
: Tech Fellow Mark Latonero report explores how layering technology on top of existing humanitarian problems can exacerbate the issues it intended to resolve.
Last updated on 02/11/2020

Deepfakes are Solvable—but Don’t Forget That “shallowfakes” are Already Pervasive

Deepfakes are Solvable—but Don’t Forget That “shallowfakes” are Already Pervasive

Abstract:

New article features Carr Center Technology and Human Rights Fellow Mark Latonero.

" Mark Latonero, human rights lead at Data & Society, a nonprofit institute dedicated to the applications of data, agreed that technology companies should be doing more to tackle such issues. While Microsoft, Google, Twitter, and others have employees focused on human rights, he said, there was so much more they should be doing before they deploy technologies—not after."
: Mark Latonero | Mar 25 2019
: Tech fellow Mark Latonero notes companies should be doing more to consider human rights implications before deploying technologies.
Last updated on 02/03/2020
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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