George W. Bush Institute and Freedom House to Convene Freedom Activists, Human Rights and Internet Experts to Assess Global Cyber Dissident Movement

Political dissidents from China, Iran, Russia, Egypt, Syria, Venezuela and Cuba will travel to Dallas to join with Fellows of the George W. Bush Institute, experts from Freedom House, Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society, the U.S. Government and other leaders in the field to discuss the successes and challenges of Internet-based political dissident movements around the world.

DALLAS--()--The George W. Bush Institute today announced it will co-host a conference on cyber dissidents with the human rights organization Freedom House on April 19, 2010, in Dallas. The conference will feature a major assessment of the condition of Internet-based political freedom around the world by Freedom House, as well as a presentation by Berkman Center scholars Ethan Zuckerman and Hal Roberts on the benefits and drawbacks of “circumvention technologies” used to overcome government censorship, and case studies by George W. Bush Institute fellows who themselves are cyber dissidents.

Dissidents from a number of countries will travel to Dallas to report on conditions in their native lands including: Arash Kamangir of Iran, Oleg Kozlovsky of Russia, Rodrigo Diamanti of Venezuela and fellow cyber dissidents from China, Cuba, and Syria.

What: Cyber Dissidents: Global Successes and Challenges

When: Monday, April 19, 2010, 9:00 a.m.—5:00 p.m. CDT

Where: James M. Collins Executive Education Center, SMU, Dallas

Co-Sponsor: Freedom House

Deadline for Media Credential Requests: Tuesday, April 13, 2010, 5:00 p.m. CDT

 

Other conference participants include: keynote speaker Jeffrey Gedmin, President and CEO, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty; Daniel Baer, Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, United States Department of State; Peter Ackerman, Founding Chair, International Center on Nonviolent Conflict; David Keyes, Director, Cyber Dissidents.org; Kristen Silverberg, former U.S. Ambassador to the European Union and George W. Bush Institute Freedom Collection Director; Oscar Morales Guevara, founder, One Million Voices Against the FARC and George W. Bush Institute Fellow; Mohsen Sazegara, former Deputy Prime Minister, Iran and George W. Bush Institute Fellow; Ethan Zuckerman, Senior Researcher, Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard; Hal Roberts, Fellow, Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard; Jennifer Windsor, Executive Director, Freedom House; Robert Guerra, Project Director, Internet Freedom, Freedom House; and Christopher Walker, Director of Studies, Freedom House.

“This gathering of cyber dissidents, human rights and Internet experts initiates our program in the study and support of human freedom, which is a major area of the Institute’s focus,” said James K. Glassman, executive director of the George W. Bush Institute. “We are thrilled to have the pre-eminent human rights organization Freedom House co-sponsor the conference, and to have Berkman Center scholars Ethan Zuckerman and Hal Roberts lead our discussion about Internet censorship. We are eager to hear from several leading young cyber dissidents who are joining with us to discuss conditions in their respective countries, and to share information and ideas about the dissident movement that is transforming the world via the Internet.”

Jennifer Windsor, executive director of Freedom House, said, “Internet freedom is an issue in which all those who care about advancing human freedom should be united to defend. Freedom House applauds the initiative taken by the Bush Institute to focus on this critical issue.”

To view a detailed agenda and speaker names, please visit: http://georgewbushinstitute.com/the-conference-on-cyber-dissidents-global-successes-and-challenges/

Media Requests:

Media interested in covering the “Cyber Dissidents: Global Successes and Challenges” conference will need to submit credentials. Interested media should submit a letter signed by an editor on company letterhead via e-mail at news@smu.edu or fax 214.768.7663 to SMU News and Communications. The letter should include the legal name, date of birth and social security number of the reporter or photographer requesting credentials. Due to space limitations, a press pool may be created. Follow-up instructions regarding credentials will be sent to media upon receipt of credential requests. For additional information, please call 214.768.7650.

Deadline for Media Credential Requests: Tuesday, April 13, 2010, 5:00 p.m. CDT

About the George W. Bush Institute:

The George W. Bush Institute is a center for scholarship and action that focuses on four major areas: education reform, global health, human freedom and economic growth, with an emphasis on encouraging social entrepreneurship and empowering women across all its work. The Institute is part of the George W. Bush Presidential Center, which also includes an Archive and museum, located on the campus of Southern Methodist University in Dallas. For more information about the George W. Bush Presidential Center, please visit georgewbushcenter.com.

About Freedom House:

Freedom House is an independent watchdog organization that supports the expansion of freedom around the world. Freedom House supports democratic change, monitors freedom, and advocates for democracy and human rights. Since its founding in 1941, by prominent Americans concerned with the mounting threats to peace and democracy, Freedom House has been a vigorous proponent of democratic values and a steadfast opponent of dictatorships of the far left and the far right. Eleanor Roosevelt and Wendell Willkie served as Freedom House’s first honorary co-chairpersons.

For more information about the George W. Bush Presidential Center, please visit: www.georgewbushcenter.com

Contacts

George W. Bush Institute
Ashley Kavanaugh, 202-835-1611
akavanaugh@georgewbushcenter.com
or
For Media Credentials:
SMU News and Communications, 214-768-7650
FAX: 214-768-7663
news@smu.edu

Release Summary

Political dissidents from China, Iran, Russia, Syria, Venezuela and Cuba will travel to the George W. Bush Institute in Dallas to discuss the online dissident movement.

Contacts

George W. Bush Institute
Ashley Kavanaugh, 202-835-1611
akavanaugh@georgewbushcenter.com
or
For Media Credentials:
SMU News and Communications, 214-768-7650
FAX: 214-768-7663
news@smu.edu