Human Rights and Information Access in a Digital World

Tuesday, October 30, 2018 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
Event Description: 

The United Nations has recognized internet access as a basic human right. This moderated roundtable event aims to foster conversations about different approaches to ensuring the public access to information. Perspectives from the social sciences, law, and information technology will shape the dialogue about how human rights thinking about communications and technology has evolved since 1948 when the UDHR was signed. What does the right to the internet mean in practice? How do movements like the Open Access movement help advance the realization of this right? Why is this right important for democracy, social cohesion, and human rights, and how does the human right to internet access relate to our work as researchers and learners?


This event is part of the Year of Pitt Global.



Jackie Smith

Professor of Sociology
University of Pittsburgh

Jackie Smith's research addresses the relationships between economic globalization, social conflicts, and popular struggles. She currently serves as editor of the Journal of World-Systems Research, the official journal of the Political Economy of the World-System Section of the American Sociological Association. She is involved locally in work with Pittsburgh’s Human Rights City Alliance, and she serves on the Leadership Committee of the internet and media justice advocacy organization, May First/People Link. Smith is an advocate for the right to communication and Open Access publishing and is part of the International Network of Scholar Activists.  Smith coordinates the Pitt Human Rights Initiative, which engages community leaders and Pitt faculty, staff and students in joint educational and research activities aimed at promoting and defending human rights locally and beyond. 

Michael Madison

Professor of Law
University of Pittsburgh

Professor Michael Madison is Professor of Law at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. He is Senior Scholar and Academic Director of the University of Pittsburgh Institute for Cyber Law, Policy, and Security (Pitt Cyber). At Pitt Law, he is Faculty Director of the Innovation Practice Institute (IPI) and a John E. Murray Faculty Scholar. As a researcher and teacher, Professor Madison focuses on intellectual property law and policy and on institutional governance of knowledge and innovation. His scope ranges from the development of research universities to data, networks, and computer software.

Sheila Corrall

Professor, Department of Information Culture and Data Stewardship, School of Computing and Information
University of Pittsburgh

Sheila Corrall is lead faculty for the Academic Libraries area in the School of Computing and Information at the University of Pittsburgh. Professor Corrall’s research interests include scholarly communication and the open movement, collection development in the digital world, reflective practice and professional competence, and intellectual capital perspectives on library and information services. 

Hillman Library - Conference Room 272
3960 Forbes Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15260