IGF 2023 Town Hall #102 Efficiency as a human right?

Issue(s)

Counter-terrorism and Human Rights
Rights to Access and Information
Technology in International Human Rights Law

Round Table - 90 Min

Description

[Full session title]: Efficiency as a human right? Seeking balance at the intersection of surveillance, migration and digital sovereignty.

Governments and industry actors have long asserted the justification of efficiency as an absolute value and primary rationale for implementing digital technologies for delivering public services. Notably, the security field reflected this trend. Latin American governments have used efficiency narratives to deploy surveillance technologies to deliver national security. However, in-depth discussions to determine the benefits and risks of such technologies don't occur democratically, and individuals must accept top-down security policies built around surveillance technology. Such policies are determined at high levels, inaccessible and unaccountable to democratic processes. The purpose and legitimacy of these policies require a more evidence-based and nuanced assessment, especially when adding to the analysis the economic/geopolitical interests of private actors and powers like the US, the EU, and China. What is efficient in each context may vary considerably. Thus, what is the relationship between efficiency and other elements that should be considered when deploying surveillance technologies?

This session aims to shed light on a topic within the security field: borders and migration, by showcasing specific case studies in Colombia and the Triple Border (Shared between Paraguay, Brazil and Argentina) and the international sphere within the EU and globally. We aim to highlight commonalities across these settings. Through these case studies, the session will highlight/demonstrate that deploying such technologies serves monetary, geopolitical, and private/corporate interests, which are inserted into policymaking through lobbying at different levels. At the same time, we wish to reflect on the role of international cooperation and governments when promoting and adopting these security and digital technologies policies and ensure that their points of view are included to foster a discussion. Our primary focus will be the question of efficiency as an absolute value whose role is critical in justifying surveillance-based security policies. This is particularly important in the context of the Global Digital Compact and the multi-stakeholder process such initiative is sustaining. This activity will also be particularly relevant in preparation for the Summit for the Future in 2024.

This session aims to continue and advance the discussion that was ignited in the last IGF in Addis Ababa, with the final goal of establishing minimum safeguards and policies that should be in place when deploying digital technologies for security and border control purposes and by strengthening networking spaces between digital rights CSOs and academics from the Global South with policymakers and international cooperation that work at the intersection of security, technology, and human rights. The session will also discuss regulatory solutions that must align with the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights to ensure that both States and technology companies uphold their respective human rights obligations and responsibilities. We aim to operationalise the discussions and establish a working group to exchange information and discuss surveillance, migration, and digital sovereignty topics in international forums.

The panel itself is hybrid by nature. Half of the panellists plan to attend remotely, while the other half is expected to participate onsite. This will allow us to ensure an effective online and offline moderation, as we conducted in the previous IGF in Ethiopia, where we conducted a similar panel with a high level of success as already described in the prior section.

Organizers

🔒Asociación TEDIC
Eduardo Carrillo, TEDIC, Civil Society, Latin America
Juan de Brigard, Fundación Karisma, Civil Society, Latin America
Ilia Siatitsa, Privacy International, Civil Society, Europe
Nathan Paschoalini, Data Privacy Brasil, Civil Society, Latin America
Laura Bingham, Temple University, Academia, North America
Miguel Candia, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Government, Latin America
Nathalie Stadelmann, B-Tech, OHCHR, United Nations, International Organization, Global

Speakers

Eduardo Carrillo, TEDIC, Civil Society, Latin America
Juan de Brigard, Fundación Karisma, Civil Society, Latin America
Nathan Paschoalini, Data Privacy Brasil, Civil Society, Latin America
Ilia Siatitsa, Privacy International, Civil Society, Europe
Nathalie Stadelmann, B-Tech, OHCHR, United Nations, International Organization, Global
Laura Bingham, Temple University, Academia, North America
Miguel Candia, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Government, Latin America

Onsite Moderator

Eduardo Carrillo, TEDIC, Civil Society, Latin America

Online Moderator

Nathan Paschoalini, Data Privacy Brasil, Civil Society, Latin America

Rapporteur

Eduardo Carrillo, TEDIC, Civil Society, Latin America

SDGs

9. Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
9.c
16. Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
16.3
16.6
16.a


Targets: SDG 9, particularly 9.c. We consider that increased access to information and communications technology should be framed around full human rights compliance. It is important to point that the pervasiveness of ICT for surveillance and security purposes is still quite far from human rights debates, something we believe this panel will help to shorten and, thus, give a new meaning and approach to what this access means and entails.

SDG 16, particularly 16.3, 16.6, 16.a. The necessity of reliable and accountable institutions is at the core of our proposal since traditionally, security institutions are normally quite disconnected from substantive human rights debates (particularly privacy and data protection debates), and thus, this proposal is a way to widen the gap between such stakeholders and groups