Big Data, ICTs and New Media in Times of Crises

Zürich, Switzerland

The presentation report is now available.

New web- and mobile-based media and information dissemination platforms are constantly evolving and producing increasing amounts of content, much of which makes up what is often called “Big Data.” This unprecedented development has inevitably led to some vital questions. Can Big Data and the new media that both creates and disseminates it be used in crisis situations?

New web- and mobile-based media and information dissemination platforms are constantly evolving and producing increasing amounts of content, much of which makes up what is often called “Big Data.” This unprecedented development has inevitably led to some vital questions. Can Big Data and the new media that both creates and disseminates it be used in crisis situations? If so, what dangers accompany the benefits of these information-rich technologies? For example, does Big Data disempower local communities as much as it democratizes data analysis? Does is empower institutions over individuals? How can it help communities to mitigate, respond and recover from conflicts and disasters? What about its relationship to privacy and the potential misuse of information?

To address these questions and more, the ISN is pleased to host Sanjana Hattotuwa, who is a Special Advisor at the ICT4Peace Foundation.

Big Data, ICTs and New Media in Times of Crises

Date: 27 Mar 2014 , 16:45-18:30

Venue: ETH Main Building
           Rämistrasse 101
           8092 Zürich
           Room HG F 33.5

The roundtable will be moderated by the ISN’s Peter Faber.

Speaker Biography

Sanjana Hattotuwa, who is both a TED Fellow and a fellow at the Center for Information Technology and Dispute Resolution at the University of Massachusetts, Boston, has spent over ten years applying and advocating the use of Information and Communications Technologies (ICTs) to strengthen peace and reconciliation, human rights and democratic governance in Sri Lanka and elsewhere. Among his many activities, Sanjana set up and curates the award-winning Groundviews, which is Sri Lanka's first citizen journalism site; he teaches new media literacy and web activism locally and internationally; and he continues to build on the extensive experience he has in managing information during sudden and protracted crises. Since 2006, Sanjana has been a Special Advisor to the ICT4Peace Foundation, which is based in Geneva, Switzerland. Through the Foundation, he has worked to further the UN’s use of ICTs in crisis information management and peacekeeping activities.

RSVP: Please register by close of business, Wednesday, 26 March via email: piotr.switalski[at]sipo.gess.ethz.ch

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