Event information

14 December 2022, 18:30-20:00
Register start 5 December 2022
Register end 13 December 2022

Downloads

Flyer >

Towards Greater Accountability with Open-Source Information

IHL Talks

Open-source information is increasingly referred to as a landmark innovation in efforts to promote accountability. When it is gathered accurately, used responsibly and stored safely, such data can greatly contribute to documenting, investigating and prosecuting international crimes and serious human rights violations, including during armed conflict.

Reliance on open-source information also raises concerns, however, for instance around information veracity, the right to privacy, conditions for courtroom admissibility and protecting the fundamental rights of the accused.

This IHL Talk will explore the practices, opportunities and challenges stemming from the open-source character of information and will notably discuss the following issues:

  • Understanding technology: To add value to accountability processes, digital open-source information must be collected, analysed and managed according to strict standards. This raises important questions around both opportunities (data overlays, geolocation and identity verification), as well as challenges (safeguarding, manipulation and mishandling) for using open-source data in legal processes.
  • Open-source data in international organizations and⁄or NGOs: Open-source information is already being used by international commissions of inquiry, different special procedures and NGOs to document international crimes and serious human rights violations. Important lessons should be gleaned from such experiences, including around sourcing and verification methodologies, how a ‘do no harm’ approach is integrated into data collection, and how findings are fed into accountability processes or otherwise used in practice.
  • User-generated evidence: While user-generated evidence may play an important role in the prosecution of international crimes, key procedural questions remain. These include the threshold for admissibility, what status is attributed to the owners of such information and the level of credibility attached to such evidence in determinations.

Moderation

  • Ana Srovin Coralli, Teaching Assistant, Geneva Academy
  • Francesco Romani, Research Fellow, Geneva Academy

Panelists

  • Jacqueline Geiss, Chief Executive Officer, Videre Est Credere
  • Sam Dubberley, Managing Director, Digital Investigations Lab, Human Rights Watch
  • Samborska Iryna, Prosecutor of the First Unit, Division for Procedural Management of Pre-trial Investigation and Maintenance of Public Prosecution in Criminal Proceedings on Crimes related to Sexual Violence, Department of Combating Crimes Committed in Conditions of Armed Conflict, Prosecutor General’s Office of Ukraine

About IHL Talks

The IHL Talks are a series of events, hosted by the Geneva Academy, on international humanitarian law and current humanitarian topics. Academic experts, practitioners, policymakers and journalists discuss burning humanitarian issues and their regulation under international law.

MORE ON THIS THEMATIC AREA

Military use of AI Drone News

New Report on Artificial Intelligence and Related Technologies in Military Decision-Making on the Use of Force in Armed Conflicts

13 May 2024

This report examines themes that arose during two expert workshops on the role of AI-based decision support systems in decision-making on the use of force in armed conflicts.

Read more

News

Third Season of ‘In and Around War(s)’ Launches with Episode on Weaponizing of Water

2 May 2024

Our podcast In and Around War(s) returns for a third season with the first episode discussing the weaponization of water.

Read more

View of a session of the UN Human Rights Committee Training

The International Human Rights Standards and System: Monitoring and Implementation Strategies at the National Level

8-12 July 2024

This training course will delve into the means and mechanisms through which national actors can best coordinate their human rights monitoring and implementation efforts, enabling them to strategically navigate the UN human rights system and use the various mechanisms available in their day-to-day work.

Read more

Garment workersto receive food from their factory during lunch time. This food is freely provided by their factory in order to ensure that workers eat healthy and hygienic food. Training

Business and Human Rights

2-6 September 2024

This training course will examine how the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights have been utilized to advance the concept of business respect for human rights throughout the UN system, the impact of the Guiding Principles on other international organizations, as well as the impact of standards and guidance developed by these different bodies.

Read more

surveillance image of people Project

Human Rights in a Digitalized World: Mapping Risk, Strengthening Regulation and Promoting the Development of International Human Rights Law

Started in August 2023

To unpack the challenges raised by artificial intelligence, this project will target two emerging and under-researched areas: digital military technologies and neurotechnology.

Read more

Computer screen with warning: civilian infrastucture: do not attack Project

The Digitalization of Armed Conflict

Started in September 2020

This project will explore humanitarian consequences and protection needs caused by the digitalization of armed conflicts and the extent to which these needs are addressed by international law, especially international humanitarian law.

Read more

Cover Page of Research Brief Publication

Between Science-Fact and Science-Fiction Innovation and Ethics in Neurotechnology

published on May 2024

Milena Costas, Timo Istace

Read more