Saturday, July 15, 2006

The Citizen Lab

The 2006 Maclean's Honour Roll highlights thirty-nine Canadians "who make the world a better place to live." There are two people who really stand out for me in the Discoverers and thinkers category: my friend and colleague Joanna Berzowska and University of Toronto professor Ron Deibert.

Readers know that I've long admired Joey's work, and I've written about it here many times, so I'll move on to Deibert and The Citizen Lab, "an interdisciplinary laboratory based at the Munk Centre for International Studies at the University of Toronto, Canada focusing on advanced research and development at the intersection of digital media and world civic politics...[T]he Citizen Lab sponsors projects that explore the cutting-edge of hypermedia technologies and grassroots social movements, civic activism, and democratic change within an emerging planetary polity."

Interesting research & activism:

OpenNet Initiative
The ONI mission is to investigate and challenge state filtration and surveillance practices. Our approach applies methodological rigor to the study of filtration and surveillance blending empirical case studies with sophisticated means for technical verification. Our aim is to generate a credible picture of these practices at a national, regional and corporate level, and to excavate their impact on state sovereignty, security, human rights, international law, and global governance.

InfoWar Monitor
The Information Warfare Monitor is an advanced research project examining how states and non-state actors seek to exploit information and information systems to pursue political objectives through non-political means. The project seeks to examine this emerging dimension of global security on two levels: Operational Case Studies & Consequences for Global Security.

Hacktivista is the story of three University of Toronto students (Nart, Michelle, and Graeme) who travel with their professor to Guatemala and Chiapas to work with human rights organizations and activists on Internet security and connectivity - and produce a documentary series in the process.


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