What is the relationship between the proliferation of digital/networked technology and democracy? This is the focus of Berkman's new 'Internet & Democracy Project.' From the official press release:
"The Berkman Center proudly announces its latest endeavor, the Internet & Democracy Project, which is an initiative that will examine how the Internet influences democratic norms and modes, including its impact on civil society, citizen media, government transparency, and the rule of law, with a focus on the Middle East."
The project will have two outputs: (i) publishing a series of case studies that document how the Internet was used in specific political encourters; (ii) helping to build a community of civil society practitioners and geeks to identify key issues and make existing online tools more available.
I started working on this project in May. I spent much of the summer reading and writing about digital/networked technology and its effects on the Ukrainian Orange Revolution. As the summer waned, the project got more legs. A wonderful Research Director, Bruce Etling, was hired, and we hosted our first external research meeting. I'll be doing some content managing and blogging for the project as it gains more momentum this Fall.
Labels: Internet and Democracy