2020-2021 Event Details

Upcoming Events:

Poster for Telegram governance

Telegram governance: When the rule of thumb doesn't work.

When: Wednesday, March 10, 2021
1 - 2 PM (EDT)

Register here for this Zoom event.

Join Dr. Farzaneh Badiei, Director of the Social Media Governance Initiative at The Justice Collaboratory; Dr. Courtney Radsch, Advocacy Director at the Committee to Protect Journalists; and Professor Ethan Zuckerman, Professor of Public Policy, Communication, and Information at UMASS Amherst, for a discussion about Telegram, community governance mechanisms and possible solutions for protection of communities at risk on social media platforms. 

The recent popularity of Telegram among Internet users has brought it into the spotlight in terms of policy and governance. Telegram is more than a traditional “messaging app”. It is a multi-sided online intermediary that caters to political, business, social and other communities; that facilitates e-commerce; that supports people in arranging social uprisings; and that provides a platform for journalists and people at political risk.

Telegram claims it is doing better than other social media apps and platforms on the Internet, repeatedly asserting that it wants to protect human rights, specifically privacy and freedom of expression. To some extent these claims are true.  At the same time, it seems the platform does not use novel approaches to user governance, but responds with new features, technology and the rule of thumb when faced with a governance challenge. To empower the community of users, Telegram has to go beyond providing them with fancy technical features and tired content moderation approaches. In short, Telegram needs a governance mechanism.

But what kind of governance mechanism should Telegram adopt? In this session, Dr. Badiei, will discuss her report written on Telegram’s governance, and will provide governance recommendations to address the real-life issues that Telegram’s communities have had to deal with, and go beyond the often-heard suggestion that Telegram be transparent and accountable.

Dr. Badiei argues that if Telegram aims to govern its users' behavior effectively and help protect human rights, it should empower the communities to govern themselves and should not focus primarily on technology to solve its problems. Enabling communities, especially those at risk, to govern themselves might both improve the overall behavior of Telegram users and offer those users better protection.

Poster for Authoritarian Police in Democracy

Authoritarian Police in Democracy: Contested Security in Latin America

When: Thursday, April 15, 2021 
2 - 3 PM (EDT)

Register here for this Zoom event.

Join The Justice Collaboratory and Yanilda González, Professor of Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School, for adiscussion of Authoritarian Police in Democracy: Contested Security in Latin America (Cambridge University Press, 2020).

In her timely book, González explains why coercive forms of policing have persisted in Latin America decades afterdemocratic transitions. Based on evidence from Argentina, Brazil, and Colombia, the book explores how police forces continue to resistchange by cultivating alliances with politicians that find little electoral incentives to enact meaningful reform.

Yanilda González will present her work and engage in conversation with Rodrigo Canales, Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Yale School of Management and Justice Collaboratory member. The event will be moderated by Camila Gripp, Senior Research Associate at The Justice Collaboratory.


González received her Ph.D. in Politics and Social Policy from Princeton University. Her research focuses on policing,state violence, and citizenship in democracy, examining how race, class, and other forms of inequality shape theseprocesses. González previously worked at a number of human rights organizations in the US and Argentina, includingthe New York Civil Liberties Union, ANDHES, and Equipo Latinoaméricano de Justicia y Género.