Happy International Human Rights Day, everyone. This year, the focus of Human Rights Day — on Monday & beyond — is the rights of all people to make their voices heard, regardless of their age, gender, race, religion, geography or economic standing. In honor of that mission, we want to share with you a new report, #ICT4HR, co-authored by Molly Land, Patrick Meier and Dd’s co-founders Mark Belinsky & Emily Jacobi.
The report, led by New York law professor Molly Land and sponsored by the World Bank Institute, examines the question of how Information and Communication Technology (ICT) can effectively promote the implementation of Human Rights. Highlighting three case studies, the report looks at the use of tools like mobile phones and social media by human rights advocates in Kenya, the Dominican Republic, and the Democratic Republic of Congo. Although new technologies have been heralded for their impact in activism and government, Philip Alston explains that there has been “little sustained work…by the human rights community as a whole to apply existing technologies or to study their potential uses and problems.”
The #ICT4HR report begins to bridge that gap by clarifying the key opportunities and challenges of ICT4HR, and offering recommendations to address risks associated with incorporating ICT into the fight for human rights. After four years working directly with communities to develop their digital literacy, Dd has no doubt about the potential power of ICT4HR. With the release of #ICT4HR on Human Rights Day 2012, we at Dd are both celebrating our successes in helping to make voices heard, and reflecting on the hard work yet to be done. Check out the #ICT4HR report and video and help us continue to spread the word.