ISP and Abrams Institute Hold 10th Annual Freedom of Expression Scholars Conference


From April 29 to May 1, the Information Society Project (ISP) at Yale Law School and the Floyd Abrams Institute for Freedom of Expression hosted the 10th annual Freedom of Expression Scholars Conference (FESC) at Yale Law School.

Participants engaged in exchanges on current issues in freedom of expression scholarship, including the governance of social media platforms, disinformation, defamation, and comparative approaches on freedom of speech and digital regulation.

“The conference was an immense success and we were impressed by the quality of the submissions and the excellent presentations,” said ISP Fellow Elettra Bietti, one of the conference organizers. “FESC continues to provide a unique space for distinguished free speech experts and junior scholars to interact and learn from each other.”

“It was exciting to engage on these cutting-edge themes as a community, particularly as most of us grapple with aspects of our democratic and cultural lives becoming mediated by digital platforms as a result of the pandemic,” added Adam Posluns, who organized the conference with Bietti. 

At FESC, scholars and practitioners discuss works-in-progress on the freedoms of speech, expression, press, association, petition, and assembly, as well as on related issues of knowledge, information and digital policy. Over the years, the conference has become a fixture on the calendar of leading First Amendment thinkers nationwide.

“I am especially happy that so many junior scholars joined us for insightful discussions on platform regulation and information integrity,” said ISP Executive Director Nikolas Guggenberger.

Like every year, the conference included a mix of panels and break-out sessions. This year, the main conference was preceded by a panel organized by the Journal of Free Speech Law and a keynote address by Floyd Abrams ’59.

“We are delighted that the Journal has been able to participate in the programming,” said Jane Bambauer ’06, Professor of Law at the University of Arizona and Editor of the Journal of Free Speech Law. “FESC is a highlight of the year for free speech scholars around the world.”

The 11th FESC will be held in the spring of 2023.

The Information Society Project (ISP) is an intellectual center at Yale Law School that supports a community of interdisciplinary scholars who explore issues at the intersection of law, technology, and society.

The Floyd Abrams Institute for Freedom of Expression at Yale Law School promotes freedom of speech, freedom of the press, access to information and government transparency.