Following the recent publication of her book Transnational Advocacy in the Digital Era, Think Global, Act Local, Dr Nina Hall joins Emily Jones and Master of Public Policy students Luisa Isaza Ibarra and Rayhan Asat to discuss how mass digital mobilisation through digital advocacy organisations is rapidly shaping public opinion on a range of transnational policy issues.
The digital era has enabled the growth and global spread of a new generation of advocacy organisations. Digital advocacy organisations, such as MoveOn, GetUp and Campact, use digital analytics to identify the most salient issues of the day, and rapidly mobilise large memberships, to put pressure on politicians. They are operating in over twenty countries – from South Africa to Sweden; Poland to New Zealand – and claim over 17 million members worldwide. Digital advocacy organisations gain influence by rapidly recruiting members online and offline.
Meanwhile, traditional Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) wield power through expertise and long-term, moral commitment to an issue. Digital advocacy organisations are shaping public opinion on many transnational problems such as climate change, trade and refugees. However, they do so by focusing on national targets rather than international institutions. This new generation of activists has formed a strong transnational network but still sees the state as the locus of power.
This event will also be livestreamed on our YouTube channel.
Nina Hall is an Assistant Professor of International Relations at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS).
Her research explores the role of transnational advocacy and international organisations in international relations.
Emily Jones is an Associate Professor of Public Policy at the Blavatnik School of Government and a Fellow of University College.
Emily’s research examines the political economy of global trade and finance, focusing on the ways in which governments can exert influence in asymmetric negotiations.
Luisa Fernada Isaza Ibarra is a Colombian free speech attorney, researcher, activist and MPP student at the Blavatnik School of Government.
Luisa has defended and promoted freedom of expression in her country, from multiple angles: from journalist protection and the fight against impunity in the crimes against the press, to online free speech and the right to access public information.
Rayhan Asat is an internationally recognised human rights lawyer and advocate.
A graduate of Harvard Law School, Rayhan specialises in international human rights law, atrocity prevention, curtailing forced labour, and promoting corporate accountability.