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Niejelow Rodin Global Digital Futures Policy Forum

The Niejelow Rodin Global Digital Futures Policy Forum is SIPA’s flagship event, central to our long-term intellectual initiative to reimagine our digital future, focusing on the potential benefits and risks from global digital technology and emerging challenges and policy responses.

Now in its sixth year, the Forum, brings together nearly two hundred leading scholars, policymakers, legal experts, and others to discuss critical challenges related to digital transformations. This year’s half-day Forum will feature:

George W. Ball Lecture with President Toomas Ilves, Former President of Estonia and George W. Ball Adjunct Professor of International and Public Affairs at Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs; in discussion with Dean Merit E. Janow, Columbia SIPA, Professor of Professional Practice in International Economic Law and International Affairs.

Pursuing Digital and Cyber Peace, a panel discussion focusing on cyber peace (and war), will explore the successes and failures of previous efforts for a more peaceful, stable, and secure cyberspace as well as current efforts by the United Nations, other countries, industry, and civil society.

Mapping Data Flows and Transparency, a discussion with SIPA Senior Research Scholar John Battelle on his research Mapping Data Flows, on how the largest technology companies collect, use, and share user information across the Internet. This session will explore issues related to transparency of data usage and collection, and consider the implications for consumers and citizens.

Digital Identity: A Development Agenda, this panel brings together experts from development and cybersecurity to discuss the use, policies and mechanisms of digital identities, with a focus on developing countries. Central to the discussion are the issues of ensuring privacy and security while facilitating improved access and rights to financial products, transparency and accountability of state and non-state actors, and enhanced efficiency and accuracy in service delivery



George W. Ball Lecture

  • President Toomas Ilves, Former President of Estonia and George W. Ball Adjunct Professor of International and Public Affairs, SIPA
  • Dean Merit E. Janow, Professor of Professional Practice International Economic Law and International Affairs, SIPA

Pursuing Digital and Cyber Peace 

  • Moderated by: Jason Healey, Senior Research Scholar, SIPA
  • Chris Harland, Deputy Head of Delegation and Legal Adviser, ICRC
  • Jane Lute, UN Special Coordinator and former Deputy Secretary of the US Department of Homeland Security
  • Thomas Markram, Director and Deputy to the High Representative for Disarmament Affairs
  • Alexander Niejelow, Senior Vice President of Cybersecurity Coordination & Advocacy, Mastercard and Executive Board Member of the CyberPeace Institute
  • Milica Pejanovic-Durisic, Permanent Representative of Montenegro

Mapping Data Flows and Transparency

  • Speaker: John Battelle, CEO of Recount Media and Senior Research Scholar, SIPA

Digital Identity: A Development Agenda

  • Moderated by: Ronaldo Lemos, Edward Larocque Tinker Visiting Professor at SIPA.
  • Aubra Anthony, Team Lead USAID Strategy & Research
  • Steven Bellovin, Percy K. and Vida L.W. Hudson Professor of Computer Science at Columbia School of Engineering
  • Anupam Chander, Professor, Georgetown University Law Center
  • Catherine Highet, Lead for FinEquity’s Technology Working Group at CGAP
  • Valerie Khan, Co-founder and VP at Digital Equity