Austin’s renowned SXSW Interactive Festival draws more than 30,000
digital natives, creatives and technologists from all over the world for
an intense 5 days of conference workshops and presentations.
While previous years’ witnessed the launch of social platform giants
like Twitter, this year’s conference saw a greater focus on issues of
privacy, data security, politics, and diplomacy—from keynote Edward
Snowden to panels on political memes—signaling a demand for more
participation by academics and practitioners of international affairs.
Aiming to ignite a conversation among such digital natives about
digital/social tools and foreign policy, The Fletcher School convened a
panel of experts at the intersection of security, economic development,
diplomacy, human rights and Internet freedom. Moderated by journalist
Spencer Ackerman (@attackerman) of The Guardian, the panel included Fletcher alumni:
- Admiral James Stavridis (@stavridisj), Dean of The Fletcher
School at Tufts University and former Supreme Allied Commander at NATO
(Fletcher MALD ’83, PhD ’84)
- Farah Pandith (@farah_pandith), Harvard IOP Fellow and (former)
the first-ever Special Representative to Muslim Communities at the U.S.
Department of State (Fletcher MALD ‘95)
- Joshua Haynes (@joshuahaynes), Senior Development Technologist +
Media Adviser, USAID’s Center of Excellence for Democracy, Human Rights
and Governance (Fletcher MIB ’10)