01 Nov Call for Submissions: Symposium on Fairness, Equality, and Diversity in Open Source Investigations (OSINT)
Open source investigation (OSINT) methods have become frequently used by international courts, human rights fact-finding bodies, and other non-governmental organisations. Though OSINT remains a vital tool for increasing accountability for human rights violations and international crimes, it still has its issues with regards to fairness, equality, and diversity (both in terms of those working in the field and in terms of how open source evidence can be fairly used in international trials). For example, similar to other subfields of international law, discourse surrounding OSINT and the opportunities it brings do tend to allocate more attention to voices that might have more funding than others, or who are based in Europe or the United States as opposed to non-Western countries. In addition, some of the methods used may omit certain crimes from investigation (for instance, due to the quality of satellite imagery available in certain parts of the world and who owns those satellites, or the nature of the crime). Other topics for consideration could be how OSINT could be more or less useful or ‘fair’ in some legal systems or conflicts over others, the relevant defence rights that come into play, and issues pertaining to cultural sensitivities and representation within the OSINT community.
In order to spark more discussion on the issues of fairness, equality, and diversity in the OSINT field, Opinio Juris will be holding a symposium on the topic during the week of 6 February 2023. We invite submissions of no more than 500 words, including a brief description of your relationship to OSINT (one or two sentences) and a short abstract of your proposed piece. Individuals from diverse backgrounds, particularly women, those from the Global South, and members of the LGBTQI+ community, are especially welcome to apply. Submissions should be sent to Sarah Zarmsky at email@example.com by 20 November 2022. Decisions will be communicated by 1 December 2022, and pieces will be due as of 30 January 2023. Please direct any questions to Sarah either by email or through Twitter DMs at @SZarmsky.