IGF 2018 WS #234
Data-Driven Advocacy: Taking Digital Rights to the Masses


Organizer 1: Private Sector, African Group
Organizer 2: Civil Society, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Organizer 3: Civil Society, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)

Speaker 1: Bronwen Robertson, Civil Society, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 2: Sarah Aoun, Civil Society, Western European and Others Group (WEOG)
Speaker 3: Neema Iyer, Private Sector, African Group


Other - 90 Min
Format description: Interactive Workshop


The three speakers work in 3 different continents on issues from around the world related to digital rights and open access, having a breadth of expertise in their contextual areas as well as related to the tools they use to engage with audiences. Sara is a programmer who uses code to create stunning and interactive visualizations, Neema trains human rights activists in low-resource settings on data collection, analysis and story telling whereas Bronwen conducts high impact research and is a data scientist, well-versed with a number of tools to support advocats.


Neema Iyer: Neema is part-Indian, part-Tanzania, raised in West Africa and currently living/working East Africa where she trains government and civil society on effective use of data and focuses on data protection, privacy and rights.
Bronwen Robertson: Bronwen, originally from New Zealand, currently living in London has a PhD on Iran Affairs and focuses much of her work on using data to impact change globally.
Sara Aoun: Sara is Lebanese, living in New York, working on digital rights issues as they pertain both to the Middle East but also developing products to help the entire digital security community through her work with human rights activists.

The session will provide a hands-on, interactive workshop on the available tools to quickly and efficiently present captivating data to an audience for the purposes of advocacy and awareness. We will first introduce the power of data visualizations , followed by a demo of based on the current work all three speakers are currently involved in and finally a learning session on how to use free tools to create impactful visualizations.

1. Introduction to Data Visualizations for Digital Rights
2. Demo: Creating Interactive Charts
3. Hands-on session: Using RawGraphs and Piktochart

The entire session is participatory and interactive given the workshop nature. We will prompt discussion during our demos, by encouraging participants to form small groups and provide feedback to one another on the utility of the tools. The hands-on session will also be focused on group work and then providing feedback to the entire group.

Internet freedom can be a daunting topic from an outsider’s perspective given the breadth of the topic and the technicalities involved. There is a need break down these bigger ideas into simple bite-sized information for general consumption using an evidence-based model of advocacy. Increasingly, laws and policies across the world focused on internet freedom are becoming more repressive such as social media taxes in Uganda, clamping down on bloggers in Tanzania and the cybercrime bill in Kenya. Now more than ever, we need internet rights activists to come together to launch large scale data-driven advocacy campaigns to explain to the masses the implications of these laws and what's at stake for open access to the internet.

Online Participation

We will live stream the session, and provide opportunities for online questions, plus follow-up post workshop.