2023 RESPONSIBLE TECH YOUTH POWER FUND COHORT Part 2
Continuing our foray into the 26 organisations who secured grant funding for their Technology based projects, we are once again going to take a look at two more non profits from the 2023 Cohort. Grants announced on 3rd August 2023. The two in the spotlight this week are: 5 Rights Foundation and the Center for Intimacy Justice.
5Rights Foundation, the brainchild of Baroness Beeban Kidron, started as a set of principles that would reimagine the digital world as a place children and young people were afforded their existing right to participate in the digital world creatively, knowledgeably and fearlessly.
Endorsed and informed by academics, parents, policy makers, teachers and healthcare professionals, these principles were also shaped by what children and young people told us they needed from the digital world to thrive.
In 2018, 5Rights developed from an idea into an organisation. Now an internationally active non-governmental, non-profit charitable organisation, 5Rights Foundation is headquartered in London with an office in Brussels, which opened in early 2021.
The annual reports can be found here. At the end of the article.
Baroness Beeban Kidron OBE is the Founder and Chair of 5Rights. She is a Crossbench member of the House of Lords and sits on the Democracy and Digital Technologies Committee. She is a Commissioner for UNESCO’s Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development where she is a member of the Working Group on Child Online Safety; a member of Unicef’s AI group; and sits on the Council on Extended Intelligence.
Duncan McCann is Head of Accountability at 5Rights. Duncan joined 5Rights from the New Economics Foundation where he led the Digital Economy Programme. Duncan has a legal background as well as a decade working in the tech industry for Cisco Systems.
Dr Kruakae Pothong is a Researcher at 5Rights and visiting research fellow in the Department of Media and Communications at London School of Economics and Political Science. Her research spans the areas of human-computer interaction, digital ethics, data protection, Internet and other related policies. She specialises in designing social-technical research, using deliberative methods to elicit human values and expectations of technological advances, such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and distributed ledgers.
Leanda Barrington-Leach is the Director of International Advocacy & Head of European Affairs at 5Rights. Leanda joined 5Rights from the European External Action Service where she was Adviser to the Secretary General focusing on Strategic Communications and the fight against Disinformation. She previously worked in EU advocacy as a consultant and for non-profits, always with a focus on human rights. Leanda volunteers as an Adviser to Plan International, supporting their work on children’s rights in EU foreign policy.
Andrea Tognoni is Head of EU Affairs at 5Rights. Andrea is an EU law and foreign policy expert, with extensive experience working on regulatory issues and policy communications at the EU and international levels. Andrea formerly led the trade practice at SEC Newgate EU. He has worked for the EU Delegation to the United Nations and other international organisations in Geneva, as well as with global NGOs and think tanks. A qualified lawyer, Andrea holds a J.D. from Barcelona University, and an LL.M in Public International Law from Leiden University. An Italian native, he speaks English, Spanish and French.
Marie-Ève Nadeau is International Advocacy Officer at 5Rights. She joined the team in 2021 with her strong experience advocating for human rights at the FIDH, the International Federation for Human Rights, and volunteering at the UNDP’s environmental governance program. She has a background in human rights and European Union policy. Originally from Canada, Marie-Ève has lived in several countries and is fluent in English, Spanish, and French and she is currently learning Dutch.
Marisa Shea is the US Senior Policy Manager at 5Rights. Marisa brings with her extensive knowledge of the legislative process and children and youth policy. She joined 5Rights from the California Senate Human Services Committee where she served as Chief Consultant. Prior to that, Marisa was counsel to the California Senate Judiciary Committee, and a Policy Advocate for the California Court Appointed Special Advocates Association. Marisa received her Bachelor of Science degree from Cazenovia College and her Juris Doctor from University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law.
Nichole Rocha is the Head of US Affairs at 5Rights. Nichole brings with her extensive knowledge of the legislative process and data policy. She joined 5Rights from the California Assembly Privacy and Consumer Protection Committee where she served as Chief Consultant. Prior to that, Nichole was counsel to the California Senate Judiciary Committee. Nichole received her Bachelor of Arts degree from UC Berkeley and her Juris Doctor from UC Davis.
Nicola White is the Executive Assistant to Baroness Kidron. She was a part of the production team for the film, Victoria & Abdul (produced by Kidron), and has been involved in 5Rights since its inception in 2014. Previously, she worked at Tiger Aspect Productions.
Professor Sonia Livingstone OBE is a member of the UNCRC General Comment’s Steering Group. Sonia is Professor of Social Psychology in the Department of Media and Communications at the London School of Economics and Political Science. She has published twenty books on media audiences, media literacy, and media regulation, with a particular focus on the opportunities and risks of digital media for children and young people.
Alexandra joins the 5Rights Foundation as a Consultant having previously been its Chief of Strategy. She has worked at TikTok (Director of Safety Public Policy, Europe) and at the British Board of Film Classification (Policy Director). Before specialising in child online safety policy, Alexandra was a solicitor in Mishcon de Reya’s Public Advocacy team.
5Rights has three areas of work: data and privacy, child-centred design and children’s rights. These are interconnected and indivisible.
Only when we treat children’s data with the utmost care, design products and services in a way that anticipates their presence, and observe the full range of their protection and participation rights will we have built the digital world that young people deserve.
Design of Service
The enormous potential of technology will only be realised when it is designed with children and young people in mind.
The digital services that children and young people use are not designed to meet their needs or uphold their rights. Many services simply ignore the presence of child users (under 18s) altogether.
Design decisions are driven more by the commercial requirement for data than by advanced consideration of a child’s best interests. Where design decisions are taken to promote their welfare online, they often come after the fact – provoked more by tragedy and public outrage than by any prior assessment of the impact on children and young people.
The failure to anticipate the presence, rights and needs of children and young people, by design and default, severely limits the potential of digital technology as a positive force in their lives.
Companies must design digital services that cater for vulnerabilities, needs, and rights of children and young people by default. To fulfil its potential, digital technologies must be directed towards children and young people’s flourishing. Retrofitting safety features into a service only after under 18 year olds have experienced harm or allowing their rights to be routinely undermined is simply not good enough.
Crucially, this principle of advanced consideration must apply to all the digital services that children and young people are likely to access in reality, not just those services that are specifically targeted at them.
Meeting the needs of childhood development or delivering on children’s rights is not optional. Governments and policymakers need to prioritise the development of robust standards for the design and development of digital technology, and regulate to require that children’s safety, rights, and privacy are upheld by design and default.
Child Online Protection
In the digital age, childhood is lived online and offline seamlessly and simultaneously. Failing to protect children and young people in one environment threatens their safety in all environments.
Children and young people are disproportionately affected by the risks of the digital world, given both their developmental vulnerabilities and their status as ‘early adopters’ of emerging technologies. They are ‘canaries in the coal mine for threats to us all.’
Despite this, the protections that children and young people enjoy as norms in the offline world do not meaningfully exist online. The digital sector defends its ‘exceptional’ status as unregulated and unregulatable. Governments around the world have yet to legislate for the online protection of children and young people from: ‘content’ risks (e.g. exposure to harmful or age-inappropriate material); ‘contact’ risks (e.g. exposure to unsolicited contact from adults); ‘conduct’ risks (e.g. cyberbullying); and ‘contract’ risks (e.g. data harvesting, commercial pressure and exhortations to gamble).
This lack of coherent, comprehensive child online protection legislation, both at a global level and within individual jurisdictions, has seen the introduction of products and services that pay little regard to, and assume no liability for, the welfare of children and young people.
Digital service providers must be held accountable and liable for the welfare of children and young people. Simply put, the protection of children and young people’s wellbeing is the price of doing business.
Countries must be proactive in introducing legislation in both their own jurisdictions and internationally. The European Union, the UK, and California have all recently demonstrated that jurisdictional action is more than capable of driving global norms.
In addition to introducing new regulation and legislation, there is an urgent need to apply and enforce existing laws, rights and safeguarding obligations to the digital world.
Children and Young People’s Rights
The UN Convention of the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) was first introduced over 30 years ago, setting out the conditions in which a child (under 18) might flourish.
Where innovators and policymakers have sought to support children and young people online, they have focused narrowly on ‘harm’, rather than on promoting their wider flourishing.
This ignores the fact that children’s and young people’s rights are balanced and multifaceted, entitling them to both autonomy over their own lives and development, and to participation in society more broadly. In an interconnected world, if children and young people’s rights are not upheld in one environment, they are denuded in all environments.
The enormous potential of digital technology will only be realised when it is proactively directed towards the promotion of children and young people’s rights, rather than retroactively adapted or deployed merely to protect their safety.
Children and young people’s rights must be embedded and upheld in the digital environment, by design and default.
Digital Futures Commission
The Digital Futures Commission is dedicated to placing children’s interests at the centre of the design of the digital world. Our ambitious research program, led by Professor Sonia Livingstone OBE, has been guided by a group of Commissioners with expertise in how children and digital technology intersect. Over the three-year duration of the Commission, our focus has been on driving real world change for children and young people.
Discover all our outputs, findings and resources on this website and join us in shaping a better digital future for children and young people. Read our final report here.
Chair, 5Rights Foundation
Dr Amani Abou-Zeid is the African Union Commissioner in charge of Infrastructure, Energy, ICT & Tourism, with over 30 years’ work experience in Africa. Egyptian national, she has a BSc in Telecommunications Engineering; an MBA in project management; a Masters of Public Administration from Harvard School of Government; and a PhD in Social and Economic Development from The University of Manchester, UK. Dr Abou-Zeid was decorated Wissam Al Alawi by HM King Mohamed VI of Morocco and selected one of “The 50 Most Influential Women in Africa”. She joined global leaders as Commissioner to the Broadband Commission for Sustainable Development as well as the Global Commission on energy.
“Our children have the right to a safe present and a bright future. In this digital age, we need to work together to provide them with adequate digital literacy and a safe cyberspace.”
Dr. Ansgar Koene is Global AI Ethics and Regulatory Leader at EY (Ernst & Young) where he leads the AI related public policy team and contributes to the work on AI governance and EY’s Trusted AI framework. Ansgar chairs the IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Working Group on a Standard for Algorithmic Bias Considerations and is a convener for the CEN-CENELEC JTC21 “AI” committee’s work on AI conformity assessment. He collaborated with 5Rights on the project “The Internet on Our Own Terms”, where young people aged 12 – 17 participated in deliberative juries to put the internet ‘on trial’.
“As a professional working on issues of data ethics and ethical uses of algorithmic systems, working with 5Rights has provided invaluable insights into the experiences of children and young people online. 5Rights takes a rigorous evidence-based approach to supporting the rights of children and young people online, by listening to their voices and recognising their diversity.”
Baroness Helena Kennedy, QC is a leading barrister and expert in human rights law issues and civil liberties. She is a member of the House of Lords and chairperson of Justice. She has acted in prominent legal cases including the Brighton Hotel Bombing, Michael Bettany espionage and the Guildford Four appeal. She also played a crucial role in getting a Human Rights Act into Labour’s 1997 manifesto and into statute. She was chair of the British Council for six years. As Principle of Mansfield College, Oxford, she established a human rights institute, to increase public and academic understanding of the field.
“5Rights is a vital and brilliant new NGO addressing the whole issue of ethical standards on the Internet with regard to children. I am so proud to be involved.”
Elizabeth Denham CBE brings extensive international regulatory expertise to 5 Rights. She served as the UK Information Commissioner from 2016-2021, following a decade of roles as a data protection and information rights regulator in Canada. As Information Commissioner for the UK, she built and led the largest data protection regulator in the world and Chaired the Global Privacy Assembly (international forum of data protection commissioners) from 2018-2021.
She is committed to making digital technologies and data work for the benefit of society. Under her leadership, the ICO embarked on some of the most daunting cross-border investigations on the misuse of individuals’ data — including her investigation into political micro-targeting and election interference, data brokers and credit reporting agencies, and use of facial recognition technology by commercial firms and the police. She is passionate about the ethical and safe collection, storage and use of data. A highlight of her time at the ICO was drafting the first ‘privacy by design’ statutory Children’s Code – a set of fifteen enforceable standards to protect children’s safety and agency on- line. This Code is having global impact as technology companies and services making meaningful changes to their services to comply with the rigorous standards in the UK Code.
In the 2019 New Year’s Honours list Elizabeth was awarded a CBE for her services to protecting people’s privacy. In 2020 she received the BCS Society Medal, which recognises an outstanding individual whose work and values have helped to enhance the reputation of digital technology and its contribution to improving our lives. In 2021 she received an honorary doctorate from the University of Victoria for international leadership in information rights.
Manuel Costescu (Treasurer) is CEO-Europe for DFCapital, a financial institution providing working capital to SMEs. Prior to his current role, he advised on impact investment strategies for the EBRD, Global Harvester, a low carbon economy merchant bank. He also acted as Head of Investments at Open Society Foundation, Soros Economic Development Fund. In 2016, he was nominated Secretary of State for Trade & Investment and was subsequently elected as a Member of the Romanian Parliament. Prior to this, Manuel was an Executive Director with J.P. Morgan’s Corporate & Investment Bank and a consultant for McKinsey. Manuel holds a Master’s in Business Administration from the Sloan School of Management at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Masters in International Development from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.
“As a father of three children, I live every day with the ever present virtual reality permeating family life. It is a privilege to be able to work with gifted people on ensuring that whatever the digital future brings, we would have been deliberate about it.”
Peter Wanless has been Chief Executive of NSPCC, the UK’s leading child protection charity, since 2013. He was previously the Big Lottery Fund’s Chief Executive, and Director at the Department for Education from 1998 to 2008. He is on the Royal Foundation Taskforce for the Prevention of Cyberbullying.
“Childhood shapes who we become, abuse never should. That is why I feel so strongly that children’s rights must apply online as well as offline so the wonderful opportunities afforded by digital technology help children flourish, rather than subject them to potentially devastating and unnecessary risk.”
Rhiannon Lawson is the Director of Service Design and Technology Standards at the Government Digital Service. Rhiannon leads the development of technology policy and guidance which supports the UK Government to buy, build and reuse technology and build accessible services which meet user needs. Rhiannon is also the lead on the government cloud policy, and has supported governments around the world to create technology and cloud strategies. Rhiannon regularly speaks at schools and universities to encourage children and young people into STEM jobs to continue the diversification of the industry
Shoshana Zuboff is the author of the books In the Age of the Smart Machine: The Future of Work and Power and The Support Economy: Why Corporations Are Failing Individuals and the Next Episode of Capitalism, co-authored with James Maxmin. The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: The Fight for a Human Future at the New Frontier of Power, integrates her lifelong themes: the digital revolution, the evolution of capitalism, the historical emergence of psychological individuality, and the conditions for human development.
Zuboff’s work is the source of many original concepts including ‘surveillance capitalism’, ‘instrumentarian power’, ‘the division of learning in society’, ‘economies of action’, ‘the means of behavior modification’, ‘information civilization’, ‘computer-mediated work’, the ‘automate/informate’ dialectic, ‘abstraction of work’ and ‘individualization of consumption’.
Dr Towela Nyirenda Jere (vice-Chair) works in the Regional Integration, Infrastructure and Trade Programme at the NEPAD Planning and Coordinating Agency as a Principal Programme Officer focusing on policy, legal and regulatory aspects of infrastructure development. She has 20 years of experience working in the private sector, academia and international development. She holds a PhD in Electrical Engineering (Networking and Telecommunications), a Master of Arts in Contemporary Diplomacy (Internet Governance), an ACCA Diploma in Financial Management and is a qualified Project Management Professional (PMP). She continues to advocate for increased awareness among African policy makers of the importance and significance of infrastructure and ICT development, Internet Governance and policy processes at national and continental level.
“The significance of the work that 5Rights undertakes in promoting the rights of children and young people online cannot be overstated. In an ever-increasing connected and online world, ensuring that children and young people are adequately protected in their digital interactions is paramount and 5Rights is leading the way, not only for the UK but globally as well.”
We have many formal and informal partnerships with organisations and individuals who support our work in many different ways. We would not exist without the funding we receive from our core set of philanthropic organisations to carry out our work. We are grateful for the generous pro-bono support we receive from legal firms and communications agencies which enhances our work and organisation. We have many varied and invaluable partnerships with academics, regulators, the media, civil servants, other charities and international NGOs, all of whom make the 5Rights team far richer, broader and more impactful.
We are hugely grateful to each of them and share our success with those individuals, organisations and funders who boldly support us.
We live in a global digital world. No matter where children live, we believe they deserve to be safe online and that international cooperation is key.
5Rights Foundation is committed to sharing its knowledge and educating others determined to create the safe digital world that children deserve. We have developed a series of educational materials and guidelines for any interested audience, including legislators, regulators and tech companies – co-created with children, academics and engineers – to drive new and innovative ways to protect children in the digital world. An example of this is the Age-Appropriate Design Code. 5Rights Founder Baroness Beeban Kidron introduced The Age-Appropriate Design Code which UK legislators adopted into UK law in 2020. The AADC has inspired legislators and policy makers around the world, including in Australia, Indonesia, the EU, Canada, Argentina and California, which in 2022 adopted its own AADC.
Center for Intimacy Justice
CEO and Founder
Jackie Rotman is the Founder and CEO of Center for Intimacy Justice (CIJ). Jackie led an investigation that was published in 2022 in The New York Times and 80 media outlets, illuminating that of 60 women’s health businesses interviewed or surveyed, 100% of them experienced Facebook or Instagram rejecting their ads. Within months of this investigation being published, Meta changed multiple of its global advertising policies toward sexual health.
Jackie holds an MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business, MPA from Harvard Kennedy School, and BA in Public Policy with University Distinction from Stanford. Jackie’s writing or investigation on women’s sexuality have been featured in The New York Times three times – including through an investigative op-ed she wrote in 2019, “Vaginas Deserve Giant Ads, Too,” which was the Opinion section’s display piece in print – and Jackie has also written creative nonfiction in Boston Globe Magazine.
Jackie founded her first nonprofit at age 14 (Everybody Dance Now!, now called Creative Network), and has headed three nonprofit organizations. Creative Network has offered free dance programs as a platform for self-esteem and community to more than 30,000 youth across the United States.
During her MBA, Jackie worked in women’s health investing with Rhia Ventures (then called Reproductive Health Investors Alliance), and for a Silicon Valley venture capital fund – on investments in contraception technology and online sex education.
Jackie speaks around the world on topics including digital censorship of sexual and reproductive rights, and other topics at the intersections of sexuality and technology. She regularly briefs US Senators, state Attorneys General, and other technology and human rights leaders on the findings of CIJ’s investigations.
Teresa C. Younger is an activist, advocate, renowned public-speaker, organizational strategist, and a proven leader in the philanthropic and policy sectors. Having spent over 20 years on the frontlines of some of the most critical battles for comprehensive equity and the elimination of institutionalized oppression, she now serves as the President and CEO of the Ms. Foundation for Women.
Polly Rodriguez is taking the female wellness industry by storm. As the CEO and Co-Founder of Unbound, a rebellious brand focused on making sexual health and wellness accessible to all womxn and non-binary people, Unbound is a leader in pushing for the normalization of sexuality and pleasure.
Jessica Fjeld focuses her legal practice on issues impacting digital media and art. She also works specifically with cases regarding intellectual property; freedom of expression, privacy, and related human rights issues; contract; and corporate law.
Recently, she has emphasized work with AI-generated art, the overlap of existing rights and ethics frameworks on emerging technologies, and legal issues confronted by digital archives.
Cristina Ljungberg is a Co-founder of The Case For Her, a philanthropic investment portfolio addressing the key women’s health issues of menstruation and female sexual health.
Wendy Anderson is a Co-founder of The Case For Her, a philanthropic investment portfolio addressing the key women’s health issues of menstruation and female sexual health.
Natalie was born in the lowland jungles of Eastern Bolivia, in the heart of South America. She spent the first 13 years of her professional life in business and nonprofit development, raising more than $70 million for companies like CNN International, universities, and nonprofits around the world.
Jackie Zupsic is the Head of Communications at Tusk Strategies where she develops and executes strategic campaigns across the country and around the globe
Emma is a human rights advocate and technologist with a commitment to belonging, information integrity, safety and inclusion both online & off.
Chloe is a passionate advocate for intersectional gender justice and sexual and reproductive health and rights. She is a graduate of Stanford University where she earned a B.A. with Honors in International Relations and Human Rights and is the recipient of the Dinkelspiel Award for Distinctive Contributions to Undergraduate Education.
Carol is a Global Health professional and sexual and reproductive health and rights advocate. With a background in SRHR and immunization supply chain, Carol works at the intersection of health and equity. Carol has been with CIJ since 2019, and prior to her work with CIJ she was supporting UNICEF’s immunization supply chain team in Copenhagen. Carol has also worked in law and policy, specifically addressing the needs of domestic abuse survivors in Los Angeles County.
Sophia is a strategic leader in the social sector with partnerships, strategy, programs, and management experience spanning more than a decade. Her focus has been on equity and access to opportunity. From her work at Accion Opportunity Fund, Hello Alice, and Kiva collaborating with governments and corporations to make a more inclusive economy, to the small business (Negotiate with Sophia) she runs that leverages social science research to support women, Queer folk, BIPOC folk, and others to negotiate higher incomes, Sophia devotes all her energy and expertise to building a more equitable future for everyone.
Mneera is a researcher-advocate at the intersection of technology and feminist justice. She is currently a Consultant Researcher at CIJ, leading a project investigating the digital censorship of sexual health. Mneera earned her BA in Computer Science from Brown University, and an MSc in the Social Science of the Internet with Distinction from the Oxford Internet Institute, where she studied as a Rhodes Scholar. Over the past year, she has also been a volunteer consultant at a tech abuse community clinic, where she meets with survivors of tech-mediated intimate partner violence to help uncover and end the abuse they are experiencing.
About Center for Intimacy Justice
Center for Intimacy Justice (CIJ) is a feminist social change organization committed to equality and wellbeing in people’s love and sexual lives.
CIJ is currently working to change discriminatory algorithms and policies that suppress access to information about health for women and people with vulvas. In 2022, CIJ’s research on Meta – published in The New York Times and 80 media outlets, cited by a US Senate HELP Committee, and tweeted about by a former Secretary of State – was followed by Meta revising its written policies toward sexual and reproductive health and wellness. We are still working toward changes in the technological practices to allow these ads.
This year, CIJ has expanded our team to 8 women (1 full-time, 7 part-time) and is working to:
- File a Federal Trade Commission complaint calling on government action to enforce change at Meta (global change even though with a US agency)
- Lead research on 4+ tech platforms that suppress women’s health
- Educate policymakers in Europe and the US (with potential for policy/algorithmic changes with global impact), and tech companies, on the research findings
- Communicate directly with tech platforms, and lead global convening conversations (speaking on 5 continents from 2022-2023), to effect change
Megan Posco, Posco Publicity, Media Relations
Gigi Singer, Communications
Beatrice Muasa, Executive Assistant
Mary Charpentier, Financial Management
Board of Directors
Amrita is honored to support the progressive, crucial work of the Center for Intimacy Justice. Amrita currently works at NorthStar team as an Investment Advisor. Prior to NorthStar, Amrita worked for several years on the Investments Team of ImpactAssets, a $1B donor-advised fund that allows clients to make investments that are focused on social and environmental returns through their charitable assets.
Zach is fortunate to contribute to CIJ and advance issues with which is he deeply aligned. With a passion for startups, community building, technology, mental health and mentoring, he is eager to help CIJ grow. Zach is the CEO of refine+focus, a Boston-based marketing and innovation consultancy.
More Information about all of those mentioned above, along with their various areas of work and projects on the CiJ website. Too much information for me to collate here. Hope this has given you an idea of the aims and objectives of this organisation.
That is all from me for this week. Speak to you during the week in the comments.
27 August 2023