Joseph B. Bayer is a Ph.D. Candidate in Communication Studies at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, USA. His doctoral research is centered on communication technologies, integrating psychological, sociological, and sociotechnical perspectives. This work takes two primary tracks: a) social media cognition and user experience and b) social networks and relationship goals. He has published work includes articles in Communication Theory, Human Communication Research, and Computers in Human Behavior.
Aidar Botagarov works as an adviser with the Office of the Representative on Freedom of the Media (RFoM), an independent institution at the Organization for Security and Co-operation. He has been with RFoM since 2013.
Prior to joining RFoM, for several years, he worked as a National Political and Media Officer with the OSCE Centre in Astana, Kazakhstan.
Aidar holds a Master’s degree in Conflict Resolution from the University of Bradford; and a Bachelor’s Degree in Public Administration from the Kazakhstan’s Institute of Management, Economics and Strategic Research.
In his current position, Aidar acts as geographical focal point for media freedom issues in Eastern Europe and South Caucasus; and has a content focus on the issues of safety of journalists.
Ledum Thandiwe Bhule has a background in law, and five years’ experience working in the human rights sector, particularly on RTI/ATI and related development issues in Nigeria. She is a Fellow of the Open Society Justice Initiative. She serves as the Senior Programme Officer with the Right to Information Initiative, a non-profit organization established to advance advocacy for public access to information and open government in Nigeria.
Current professional activities centre on promoting public access to information and systemic reform through civic-driven change and citizen engagement in multi-tiered systems of governance; particularly through Nigeria’s Freedom of Information (FOI) Act, adopting multi-stakeholder initiatives towards FOI implementation including strategic planning; public advocacy and education; capacity building for various stakeholders including public institutions, civil society and the general public; FOI research and implementation; and performance assessment in government.
Abderrahim Chalfaouat is a PhD candidate at the department of Advertising and Communication, Hassan II University of Casablanca. He works on the intersections between television, cultural policy and democratisation in Morocco. He got an MA in Moroccan American Studies in 2011 and a BA in English linguistics in 2000 from the same university. Abderrahim is also a frequent conference-goer. His research interests include media and society, cultural policy, MENA politics, democratisation and human rights. Abderrahim has attended numerous academic events in his research domains, especially the Summer University Course at Central European University, in Budapest in 2012. In 2013 he participated in the Religious Media and the Arab Spring workshop in Doha, Qatar in April, and the Stockholm Internet Forum in Sweden, in May. In November 2014, he attended the Alumni Conference of the EU-Middle East Forum that the German Council on Foreign Relations organised in Berlin, Germany. His most recent participation outside Morocco was the American Institute for Maghrib Studies’ annual conference on Linking Public Opinion and Political Action that took place in Tunisia (May 29-June 1, 2015).
Abderrahim is an independent writer and journalist with studies and opinion articles featuring at a number of sites in English and Arabic, especially on middleeastmonitor.com. His recent publications include two book chapters. The first is titled “The Internet under the Moroccan Spring: from entertainment to activism” found in the 2014 collection Social Media Revolution. The second is “Media and freedom of expression in post-colonial Morocco” in the 2015 Free Speech and Censorship around the Globe from CEU Press.
Elisabetta Ferrari is a Doctoral Student at the Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania. She researches collective action, activism and digital technologies; she is also interested in how different social and political actors construct myths and narratives about technology – and how these relate to policy.
Elisabetta has been involved in the international project Ranking Digital Rights, which focuses on the role of ICT companies in protecting and promoting the right to privacy and freedom of expression online; within the project, she has conducted research on telecommunications companies in Italy and Hungary. She also contributed research on the Hungarian social network iWiW to the UNESCO report “Fostering Freedom Online: the Role of Internet Intermediaries”.
Elisabetta has a background in student activism and political campaigning in Italy. She holds a BA in International Studies from the University of Bologna (Italy) and an MA in Political Science from Central European University (Budapest, Hungary). Before joining the Doctoral program at the Annenberg School, she worked at the Center for Media, Data, and Society at Central European University (Budapest, Hungary).
Elouise Fowler is a Juris Doctor student at the Australian National University. She is in the early stages of writing a comparative law thesis on reporter’s privilege in Australia, Europe, and the United States. Elouise also works for the Australian Financial Review. She has published articles in the news, features, and legal affairs sections of the newspaper.
Andiro Ga-Aro is a media lawyer with the Albany South Sudan Program under the Internews USAID i-Stream Funded Project.
His responsibilities include working with legislators, government, media professionals, and other stakeholders to advocate for an improved legislative and regulatory framework in South Sudan; liaising with Association of Human Rights Lawyers in South Sudan, the South Sudan Law Society on legal defense; and facilitating workshops across South Sudan on media laws.
Andiro graduated with bachelor of laws (LLB) from Uganda Christian University-Uganda, Faculty of Law – 2011. He has more than four years of program implementation with international non-governmental organizations in South Sudan such as RedR UK as Humanitarian Trainer, and Public International Law Policy Group (PILPG) as Program Officer.
Through working closely with legislators, government and media professionals, and facilitation of workshops across South Sudan, Andiro has developed a comprehensive knowledge of the South Sudan media law landscape.
Lisa Hiemer works as an Advisor in the German – South African Governance Support Programme (GSP) implemented by the German implementing agency, Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH. As part of a component on improving accountability and transparency, she is advising the organisation Eastern Cape Communication Forum (ECCF) based at the School of Journalism and Media Studies at Rhodes University on the implementation of various media development projects.
Lisa holds an MSc in Politics and Communication from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) and a BA in Media and Communication from the University of Passau, Germany. She has worked for the GIZ Programme on Democratisation, State and Civil Society in Zambia, for the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) in Berlin, and for the Media Programme sub-Sahara Africa of the Konrad-Adenauer Foundation (KAS) in Johannesburg. Her professional and research interests focus on participatory approaches towards media development, ICTs for development, accountability, representation and access to information.
Furhan Hussain is a Karachi-Islamabad based human rights activist, digital security trainer, researcher, and communications professional. He currently leads digital security and advocacy programmes at Bytes for All, Pakistan, with focus on freedom of expression, privacy rights and surveillance, censorship and information controls, and technology driven gender based violence.
His organization, Bytes for All, has played a vital role in leading the free speech and digital rights debate in Pakistan since 2007, and has been advocating for restoration of Internet rights in Pakistan on all national and international forums.
Furhan can be found on Twitter at @furhanhussain
Svitlana Kisilova is a Communication manager at the NGO “Communicating a New Ukraine”. Together with her colleagues she is improving government communication of decentralization reform, energy efficiency, and internally displaced people from Crimea, Donetsk and Lugansk regions.
Prior to joining Communicating a New Ukraine, Svitlana worked for the PR agency Pleon Talan, affiliation of Ketchum Pleon in Ukraine. Svitlana also worked at the Ukrainian Association of Public Relations where she was actively engaged in research of PR market in Ukraine.
Svitlana holds a master degree in Sociology from the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy (Kyiv, Ukraine). She has also completed a certificate program in Theory and Methods of Public Relations and participated in an exchange program in Helsinki University, where she has studied Media and Global Communication.
Her interests include government communication and the practical application of network theory to distribution of information in regions with ongoing armed conflicts.
Chanyathon Kritchanchai graduated with a bachelor’s degree of Law from Thammasat University (with honors) in 2013. He is currently studying for a master’s degree in Intellectual Property and International Trade Laws at Ramkhamhaeng University.
He is also working as a Legal Research Assistant at University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce. He has research experience from the Academy of Public Enterprise Policy, Business and Regulation (APaR) and the University of the Thai Chamber of Commerce, including the projects “Television sector Liberalization ASEAN” and “Cross Media Policy for Thailand”. He recently worked with another lecturer to research and analyze draft law for Mr. Isara Wongkusolkij, Member of the National Legislative Assembly.
Nevena Krivokapic works as a Project Manager Assistant and Legal Researcher at Share Foundation (Serbia) on projects established with a goal to fight for the public’s interest in every critical battle affecting digital rights within the fields of privacy, free speech, government transparency and efficiency, surveillance and human rights. Also she worked in Stojkovic & Prekajski Law Office.She is most interested in Media Law, Intellectual Property Law and Internet Law. Nevena graduated at Faculty of Law, University of Belgrade, was a member of winning team in 2011 International Rounds of Price Media Law Moot Court Competition and is specializing in Media Law.
Ravi Kumar is an intrapreneur, digital strategy leader, and good governance advocate. He uses technology and media to create opportunities and deliver aid. Currently, he is helping Nepal, his home country, recover from the recent earthquakes. His work has been featured in the New York Times.
By day, he leads digital strategy for Governance Global Practice at the World Bank in Washington, DC. At night, he works on his latest start up, Code for Nepal, to increase digital literacy and use of open data in Nepal. His TIME op-ed about using data to deliver aid in Nepal was named by the Aspen Institute as one of the five best ideas of the day. He has also published in the The Huffington Post, Devex, and national newspapers in Nepal.
He serves on Buena Vista University’s President’s Advisory Council, and is a Penn Kemble Fellow at the National Endowment for Democracy. He often guest lectures and speaks at universities in the US and Nepal. In 2009, he co-founded Grassroot Movement in Nepal, a non-profit that has rebuilt more than 25 schools in rural Nepal. He has a MS degree from Columbia University where he was a Fellow at the Toni Stabile Center and specialized in digital media. Connect with him on Twitter: @RaviNepal
Jamie Lee is a Communication and Information Programme Specialist at the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization. She works in the field of freedom of expression, safety of journalists, human rights, and internet governance in Southeast Asia. She is currently leading a participatory law-making process in cooperation with the Government of Cambodia and international and national stakeholders to draft and pass an Access to Information legislation in Cambodia.
Hsueh Chun Liao (Ruby) has been working in Taiwanese government agencies for ten years. Prior to her work with the National Communications Commission (NCC), she gained extensive experience with WTO negotiations at the Ministry of Economic Affairs. In order to deepen understanding of communications regulatory practices, in 2010, she transferred to the NCC, where her duties have included dealing with the setup, review, and renewal of satellite broadcasting business licenses.
While the DCMS plans to introduce the Communications Act White Paper before the end of 2015, the NCC of Taiwan is working on a draft of the Convergent Communications Act. Therefore, she would like to see how the UK regulator launches legislative reform, as well as to learn from UK’s regulatory experience.
Furthermore, as the emerging media issue expands, specifically Over-the-Top, she would also like to explore the regulatory trend of new media among global regulatory agencies.
Waleed Magdy is a passionate young legal counsel. He joined Thomson Reuters in 2014; researching, managing, and reporting day to day legislation and cases across MENA region; Prior to Thomson Reuters, Waleed worked for Dar Alfouad Hospital in Egypt handling contracts and legal affairs.
Waleed’s academic performance aligns with his overall commitment and inquisitive acumen. He has worked with PCMLP programming to help organize regional and international moot courts, local and international workshops, and events that focus on legal and presentation skills. He has diversified legal experience with focus on Commercial, International laws & Human Rights, Technology, Media & communications fields. He has vast knowledge and familiarity with GCC and MENA region laws as well as the public and private international laws. Waleed has a bachelor degree in Law (ASU) English department and now he is pursuing his master’s degree in the international law of commerce.
In the long term, his agenda is to establish an institution in Egypt, initially to provide the knowledge, skills and methodology needed in the legal field. Furthermore, his goal is to understand the changing law environment, particularly in terms of how global actors are attempting to exert their influence using media, technology and the pecuniary advantages on the state level.
Hajar Malekian Jebeli is a PhD candidate in Public Law at Pantheon Assas (Paris2) University. Hajar obtained a master’s degree in Public, International and European law at University of Paris Sud in 2013 and was awarded a full year scholarship from the French government to complete her studies. In 2007, she earned a Bachelor of Science degree in software engineering and in 2012 she obtained a Bachelor of Art degree with honors in law (both in Iran).
Hajar is currently working on her thesis research entitled “Free Flow of Information on the Internet” supervised by m. Olivier de Frouville. In her work, she advocates for the fundamental right of expression and information on the Internet and analyzes the threats to the open internet from both the private and public sector. Her fields of interest are International Human rights law, media law, Cyber law, Communication Law, Open Data, Net Neutrality, Intellectual Property, the Semantic Web, and Internet Economic/Business Models, among others.
Nathalie Maréchal is a PhD student in Communication at the University of Southern California. A dual citizen of the United States and France, she grew up between Louisville, Kentucky and Paris, France before moving to Washington, DC for college at American University. Nathalie received a BA in International Studies (2006) and MA in International Communication (2011) from AU, working in a number of university offices throughout that period. While living in DC, she also worked for Human Rights First and managed the Young Professionals in Foreign Policy Refugee Assistance Program, which matches newly arrived refugees with volunteers who supplement the work of the resettlement agencies. Writing her Master’s thesis on media coverage of WikiLeaks convinced her that she wanted to pursue a PhD in Communication, and she started at Annenberg in Fall 2013. In summer 2014, Nathalie was a COMPASS Fellow with the Ranking Digital Rights project at New America’s Open Tech Institute. Ranking Digital Rights aims to create a ranking system that evaluates the world’s major Information and Communication Technology (ICT) companies on policies and practices related to free expression and privacy in the context of international human rights law. Nathalie’s current research projects focus on the surveillance of welfare recipients in the US and on the political economy of circumvention technology.
Paula Martins is a lawyer who has worked for many years with human rights NGOs in Brazil on issues such as housing rights, indigenous land rights, and disability rights. She has also developed capacity-building programmes and materials on human rights themes. She has experience in co-ordinating human rights projects, researching and documenting human rights violations and legal counselling on matters of public interest. Before joining ARTICLE 19, Paula worked with Human Rights Watch as a researcher and as a human rights officer with the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Geneva. She was a visiting fellow to the Federation Internationale des ligues des Droits de l’Homme in Paris and with the European Roma Rights Center in Budapest. She has an LLM in public interest law, with a specialisation in international human rights law, and pursued a Master degree in political science. Since 2007 Paula heads the South America Office of ARTICLE 19, where she has worked on leading freedom of expression cases before the Brazilian Judicial system, has carried out advocacy in issues pertaining access to public information, digital rights, media regulation, decriminalization of defamation, among others.
Alexander Matschke is researcher and journalist at DW Akademie, a German media development agency affiliated with Deutsche Welle. Previously, he worked at the new media department of German Federal Agency for Civic Education and at the Berlin-based Institute of Media and Communications Policy. He has been trainee at the European Commission’s Directorate-General Information Society and Media (now: DG Connect) and holds a Master’s degree in political science and mass communication research from Göttingen University.
Abdiaziz Ahmed Musa works for the Ministries of Foreign Affairs and Religious Affairs as Diaspora Director and IT/Media consultant respectively. He is the founder & Owner of Somaliland Yellow Pages, author of several books (Notable Female Leaders in Somaliland Since Independent 1991-2015),Somaliland Chamber of Commerce Book( Somaliland Trade Directory book 2013-2014 He is chairperson for Horn of Africa training & research organization – HATRO) and a freelance Journalist-co-editor of the biggest business magazine in Somaliland (African age). Abdiaziz is also the founder and Managing Director of a website designing and software development company in Somaliland.
He holds two Bachelor Degrees in commerce (IT) and in Mass Communication and Journalism from University of Pune & New media Institute of Mass communication (NMIMC) Pune, India.
He is interested in writing, books, online/offline media, entertainment, computing, philosophy, and business.
João Araújo Monteiro Neto’s academic and professional background was developed through the intersection of Law and Information Technology. He focused his studies on the legal regulation of IT, which included teaching Information Technology Law and one research project about information technology criminal law in South America. Now, during his PhD at University of Kent – UK, he is researching how national Internet Governance Systems might contribute to the design of the Global Governance Ecosystem, in particular exploring the relations between multistakeholderism and generative governance.
Jyoti Panday is Programme Officer at the Centre for Internet and Society (CIS), India where she works on Internet governance, freedom of expression, and on understanding the role and responsibility of intermediaries in protecting user rights. A public policy graduate, Jyoti spent three years in London working with Stakeholder Forum, an international organisation coordinating web-based projects, research, writing, and developing a communications strategy for the projects around the outcomes from Rio+20 and the post-2015 development agenda. She has also worked for the Foundation for Democracy and Sustainable Development (FDSD), where she helped launch a global manifesto exploring the relationship between democracy and sustainable development. She relocated to India in 2014, and has since represented CIS in the development of the Manila Principles on Intermediary Liability, a global framework to guide content restriction and removal practices.
Zachary Press is a J.D. Candidate at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law. He is also a L.L.M. Candidate at the Université de Paris I – Panthéon-Sorbonne. His research interests include freedom of expression in the digital age, the First Amendment, and how societies address hate speech online in the context of economic development, human rights, and global terrorism.
Paul Rothman is the assistant partnerships officer with the Center for International Media Assistance (CIMA) at the National Endowment for Democracy (NED). At CIMA, Paul supports strategic partnership development and conducts research on media law reform and how to build political support for independent media. With a particular focus on East and Southeast Asia, Paul contributes regularly to CIMA’s blog, The Source, on media development issues in the Asia-Pacific region.
Paul graduated from Drake University with a bachelor’s degree in International Relations. After spending a year working at the Southwest University of Political Science and Law in Chongqing, China, Paul attended and graduated from George Washington University’s Elliott School of International Affairs with a master’s dregree in Asian Studies. While at the Elliott School, he focused on political development and regional integration in Southeast Asia and served as the managing editor of the graduate student journal. Prior to joining CIMA, Paul was a program manager at Sister Cities International, where he managed a municipal partnership program between American and Japanese cities focused green energy and sustainable building projects.
Ping Shum is a third year PhD student in a joint degree program between King’s College London and the National University of Singapore. His research focus is the Chinese party-state’s proactive use of Internet technology, such as social media and e-government, to mobilise public support and enhance legitimacy.
Prior to his current position, Ping worked for news media outlets in Hong Kong and the UK, including seven years spent at the BBC World Service in London as a producer, journalist, radio presenter and duty editor. He covered the Nobel Peace Prize Award Ceremony in Oslo, the Climate Change Summit in Copenhagen, pollution in the Amazon and the issue of Tibetans in exile in India.
He holds master’s degrees from the University of Cambridge and the Australian National University, and a BA in International Journalism from China. In his spare time, Ping enjoys cooking, photography and traveling.
Catherine Simon Arona Samuel is a fourth year law student at the University of Juba in South Sudan. She previously worked as a radio presenter on “Voice of the People” in 2012 and later worked with Free Voice South Sudan, September 2013 as a Media Monitoring Assistant for children’s coverage in the media. Catherine studied Women’s Leadership and American History at Simmons College in Massachusetts from June 2013 to August 2014, which was sponsored by the US Department of State. She is also train in photography and photojournalism by National Geographic.
Fedor Smirnov is an ICT practitioner from Russia, working in the field of Internet infrastructure. He spent three years with RU-CENTER, the largest ICANN accredited registrar in Russia, CIS and Eastern Europe, where he was in charge of PR and later – regional business development. In 2012 he joined Webnames.ru as the Chief Marketing Officer and continued his professional development on the Russian domain names & hosting market.
Prior to his work in Internet infrastructure companies, he has contributed as online journalist to several Russian media, worked as project manager and technical writer for software development companies.
Fedor holds a Ph.D. in Linguistics and BA degrees in German/English Philology and Financial Management respectively.
Currently Fedor Smirnov is a Board Member and Secretary of the ISOC Russia Chapter – an NGO that plays an active role in media policy (primarily, Internet policy) in Russia. 2014 Fedor has been selected to represent Russian Federation on the Internet Governance Forum in Istanbul as an ISOC Ambassador.
Besides DNS and Internet Infrastructure, Fedor’s areas of interest are ICT & Internet policy, cybersecurity, Internet and Human Rights, and the Information Society. Fedor is fluent in three languages: Russian, English and German.
Rina Tsubaki leads and manages the “Verification Handbook” and “Emergency Journalism” initiatives at the European Journalism Centre in the Netherlands. The initiatives centre on reporting in and about volatile situations in the digital age, and Tsubaki has frequently spoken on these topics at international and national events, including a U.N. meeting and the International Journalism Festival. Earlier, she managed several projects focusing on the role of citizens in the changing media landscape, and continues to develop and implement programmes that focus on humanitarian assistance and the press freedom for the EU28, Western Balkans and Turkish journalists. She was the lead contributor of the Internews Europe’s report on the role of communication during the March 2011 Japan quake and also authored a case study for the 2014 World Disaster Report which is published by the The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). She has also contributed to Hokkaido Shimbun, a regional daily newspaper in Japan.
She tweets from @wildflyingpanda.
Uglješa Vuković is a researcher and an assistant for advocacy in Transparency International BiH, and is primarily engaged in conducting legal analyses and developing advocacy campaigns related to the field of freedom of information. He also writes columns on media content and politics for internet magazines in Bosnia and Herzegovina and South East Europe. His professional path is related to his engagement in civil society either as a lawyer or a commentator on domestic policy. He is actively involved in media development projects as an author and lecturer on freedom of information issues. Uglješa also writes poetry, and his poems were published in post-Yugoslav collections of youth poetry.
His interests include politics, literature, ethics, law and philosophy. In his free time, he enjoys walking, playing basketball, and reading.
Lia Wolock is a doctoral candidate in the Department of Communication Studies at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where she also earned a master’s degree in South Asian Studies. Wolock’s research and teaching focus on transnational flows of media and people, the construction of public culture, and minority media representation, production, and use, with special emphasis on the South Asian diaspora and digital media. She is particularly interested in examining diasporic communities’ use of media as forms of identity work and intercultural communication from a critical race, postcolonial, and feminist perspective. Her current project explores the production and maintenance of connectivity in the South Asian American diaspora as both a technological and cultural process.
Samuel Woolley is a PhD student in the department of Communication at the University of Washington and Project Manager of the Political Bots Project, an NSF and EU Research Council supported endeavor focused on studying the role of automated social actors online. He is a researcher on the Digital Activism Research Project and the MIT Media Lab/UW New Pathways to Media Science Project, the latter of which focuses on tracking learning within the youth computer coding community on https://scratch.mit.edu/.
Sam is also a doctoral fellow at the Center for Media, Data, and Society at Central European University. His research is motivated towards building broad understandings of how new technology, especially advances in artificial intelligence, effect policy and public opinion. Sam is based in Seattle and tweets from @samuelwoolley.
Isabelle Zaugg is a doctoral candidate in the School of Communication at American University. Her research interests include language, culture, and representation in global contexts. Her dissertation focuses on the means by which technical design supports or hampers language diversity in the digital sphere. A secondary interest is the public diplomacy and nation branding implications of high profile visual images of emerging economies that either reinforce or challenge stereotypes.
Isabelle earned a BA in Art Semiotics from Brown University and an MA in Film & Video from American University. She was a Fulbright Fellow to Ethiopia in 2012-2013, where she taught digital video classes to students at Addis Ababa University and secondary school students. Her work with students and partner organizations culminated in a series of media projects, including Season 3 of Involve Me, a TV program which aired on Ethiopian Television to an audience of millions. Isabelle is also a graduate of the United World College of the Adriatic, and was born and raised in the San Luis Valley in Colorado, U.S.A.