Questions about the promises and dangers of technology have recently dominated headlines—but less often covered are the stories of practitioners and start-ups leveraging their know-how to build peace. On May 31, the Justice Sector Training, Research and Coordination Program and the U.S. Institute of Peace hosted a symposium to tackle the difficult questions of how technology can be used to strengthen rule of law, security, community engagement, and relationships between states and the people they serve in developing and conflict-affected areas.

This included a series of expert panels on technology and rule of law, and an exciting networking session with local entrepreneurs that are driving technology forward to meet peacebuilders' needs. Review the conversation on Twitter with #RuleofLawTech.

Welcoming Remarks

Nancy Lindborg
President, United States Institute of Peace

Harry Bader
Acting Executive Director, U.S. Global Development Lab, U.S. Agency for International Development

Hamid Khan
Deputy Director, Rule of Law Collaborative, University of South Carolina

Session One: Innovations in Law Enforcement: Digital Investigative Analysis & Forensic Science: Advances and Setbacks

Lindsay Freeman, Moderator
Human Rights Center Research Fellow, School of Law, University of California, Berkeley

Mark D. Mogle
Deputy Assistant Director for Forensics, International Criminal Investigative Training Assistance Program, U.S. Department of Justice

Mark Grantz
Assistant to the Special Agent in Charge, Washington Field Office, U.S. Secret Service

Joe Varani
Digital Investigative Analyst, Cybercrime Lab, U.S. Department of Justice

Exhibitors

Keynote Address

Luis C. deBaca
Former Ambassador-at-Large to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons and Former Director Office of Sex Offender Sentencing, Monitoring, Apprehending, Registering, and Tracking (SMART) U.S. Department of Justice

Session Two: Innovations in Engagement: From Mobile Apps to Social Media

Rohini SrihariModerator
Chief Data Scientist, PeaceTech Lab

Jeffrey Aresty
President, InternetBar.org

Karen Naimer
Director, Program on Sexual Violence in Conflict Zones, Physicians for Human Rights

Antoine Heuty
Founder and CEO, Ulula LLC

Zaid Zaid
Public Policy, Strategic Response, Facebook, Inc.

Session Three: Innovations in E-Governance: From Case Management to Consensus Building

Andrew SolomonModerator
Senior Rule of Law Advisor, U.S. Agency for International Development

Jeff Apperson
Vice President, National Center for State Courts

Julia Glidden
General Manager, IBM Global Business Services - Global Government Industry

Nino Vardosanidze
Senior Legislative and Oversight Manager, Good Governance Initiative, Tetra Tech ARD (Republic of Georgia)

Related Publications

Managing the Secure Release of Sensitive Detainees in Libya

Managing the Secure Release of Sensitive Detainees in Libya

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

By: Fiona Mangan ; Lillian Dang ; Nate Wilson

During the 2011 uprising that ousted dictator Muammar Gadhafi, revolutionary fighters in Libya rounded up large numbers of Gadhafi loyalists and detained them in prison facilities and makeshift detention centers around the country. The release of such high-profile detainees, either after they have been acquitted of crimes or served their sentences, is a sensitive political issue. This report examines the domestic and international laws and standards governing the secure release of these detainees and provides a number of policy ideas for addressing the shortcomings of Libya’s current release procedures.

Type: Special Report

Justice, Security & Rule of Law

Ethiopia’s Experiment in Reconciliation

Ethiopia’s Experiment in Reconciliation

Monday, September 23, 2019

By: Solomon Ayele Dersso

In February 2019, the Ethiopian parliament adopted a landmark proclamation establishing a national reconciliation commission, the first-ever such institution in Ethiopia. Six months on, the commission has developed a three-year plan and begun consultations. But the body was formed without broad-based political consensus regarding its mandate, so has yet to win the critical trust of Ethiopia’s many social and political groups. Dr. Solomon Ayele Dersso discusses the mandate of this body, the challenges ahead, and how the commission could help build peace in Africa’s second most populous country.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Human Rights; Justice, Security & Rule of Law

As Africa Battles Sexual Violence, a Nigerian City Shows How

As Africa Battles Sexual Violence, a Nigerian City Shows How

Thursday, August 8, 2019

By: Isioma Kemakolam

When civic leaders and officials in Jos, Nigeria, launched an initiative in 2017 to calm repeated bloodshed in the city, a series of dialogue forums with residents revealed a chilling pattern of hidden violence in their midst: sexual assault. Girls and women recounted rapes and attacks for which justice was impossible, often because authorities were unresponsive. The women faced a problem common to their sisters across Africa: national laws against sexual violence were having little effect on the ground. But the dialogues have wrought a change. In May, police in Jos opened the city’s first unit dedicated to investigating sexual and gender crimes.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Justice, Security & Rule of Law

Afghanistan Still Has a Chance to Improve This Election

Afghanistan Still Has a Chance to Improve This Election

Monday, August 5, 2019

By: Ezatullah Waqar

As the United States, the Afghan government and the Taliban maneuver toward a peace process for the country, the strength of the current Afghan government and political system will be affected by the credibility, in Afghans’ eyes, of the presidential election set for September 28. Yet the credibility of Afghan elections is weakened by unresolved allegations of criminal fraud—especially against the nation’s former top election officials—in last year’s parliamentary balloting. With just 53 days remaining before the presidential vote, time is now short—but Afghan authorities still can take steps to improve the prospects for an election that citizens might see as credible and legitimate.

Type: Analysis and Commentary

Democracy & Governance; Justice, Security & Rule of Law

View All Publications