'Infodemics': Forum on Information and Democracy names working group members

MANILA, Philippines – The Forum on Information and Democracy named the 17-member steering committee of the “working group on infodemics” on Monday, July 6.

Co-chaired by Marietje Schaake, a former member of the European Parliament and international policy director of the Stanford Cyber Policy Center, and Maria Ressa, CEO and executive editor of Rappler, the steering committee aims to make and implement democratic guarantees in the online information and communication space and received strong support from countries that were part of the Alliance for Multilateralism in a June 26 meeting. 

Aside from co-chairs Ressa and Schaake, the steering committee's members are:

Sinan Aral - Professor of IT & Marketing at the MIT Institute for Data, Systems and Society. Co-leads MIT’s Initiative on the Digital Economy. Currently on the Advisory Board of the Alan Turing Institute, the British National Institute for Data Science in London.

Julia Cagé - Author of bestselling books about democracy and media. Assistant Professor of Economics at Sciences Po and co-director of LIEPP “Evaluation of Democracy” Research Group. Specialized in development economics, political economy, and economic history.

Pamela Chen - 2020 Human-Centered Artificial Intelligence-JSK Journalism Fellow at Stanford University. Specializes in improving the recommendation systems that control our shared visual experiences. Emmy award-winning documentary director.

Ronald Deibert - Professor of Political Science and Director of the Citizen Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy, University of Toronto. Co-founder and principal investigator of the OpenNet Initiative and Information Warfare Monitor projects.

Camille François - Chief Innovation Officer at Graphika, and leads the company’s work to detect and mitigate disinformation and media manipulation. Previously the Principal Researcher at Jigsaw.

David Kaye - United Nations special rapporteur on the Promotion and Protection of the Right to Freedom of Opinion and Expression. Clinical professor of law at the University of California, Irvine, School of Law.

Edison Lanza - Lawyer, special rapporteur for Freedom of Expression of the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights. Directed and founded several non-governmental organizations which defend the right to freedom of expression.

Roger McNamee - Author of Zucked: Waking up the Facebook catastrophe and tech venture capitalist. Founding partner of Elevation Partners. Co-founder of Silver Lake Partners and head of the T. Rowe Price Science and Technology Fund. Former investor in Facebook.

Jun Murai - Distinguished Professor, Keio University. Co-Director, Keio University Cyber Civilization Research Center. Founder of the Japan University UNIX Network (JUNET) and the WIDE project. Known as the “father of the Internet in Japan.”

Peter Pomerantsev - Journalist, author and TV producer. Visiting Senior Fellow at the Institute of Global Affairs at the London School of Economics. Senior Fellow at the Agora Institute at Johns Hopkins University.

Julie Posetti - Global Director of Research at the International Center for Journalists. Previously, Senior Research Fellow and lead of the Journalism Innovation Project at the Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.

Anya Schiffrin - Former journalist, director of the Technology, Media, and Communications specialization at Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs and lecturer at the School of International and Public Affairs.

Vivian Schiller - Executive director of Aspen Digital program at the Aspen Institute. Former President and CEO of NPR and founding head of the Civil Foundation. Board member of Reporters Without Borders USA.

Wolfgang Schulz - Director of the Humboldt Institute for Internet and Society. Lecturer within the field of information and communication at the law faculty of the University of Hamburg. Member of the directorate of the Hans-Bredow Institut.

Christopher Wylie - Data scientist and the whistleblower who reported Cambridge Analytica and Facebook. Listed in TIME's 100 Most Influential People in the World and Forbes’ 30 Under 30. Author of bestselling book Mindf*ck: Inside Cambridge Analytica’s plot to break the world.

Meanwhile, lawyer Dan Shefet, expert with UNESCO and UN’s Office on Genocide Prevention and Hate Speech, is the legal adviser of the rapporteur’s team.

The steering committee's first meeting was held on July 6 to and included discussions on the finalization of a call for contributions which will be issued in the coming days.

Christophe Deloire, chair of the Forum on Information and Democracy; Nighat Dad, vice-chair; and Leon Willems, treasurer also participated in the meeting. Rappler.com