Surveillance and International Human Rights Law

08 December 2016 - A Workshop on Guadalajara,Mexico


This session will provide an overview of how electronic surveillance has been approached by international human rights bodies. This includes a discussion on the trends, challenges and opportunities for the development of standards in international human rights law. 

International human rights law and bodies are becoming increasingly influential at the national level and they have are particularly well positioned to address this issue with legitimacy due to the growing international dimension of surveillance. Therefore it is important to analyse how the universal and regional human rights systems are approaching the subject, which differences and shortcomings can be identified, how are governments and national courts interacting with them and how civil society is using them to challenge unchecked surveillance.

David Kaye will talk about developments in the UN system. Elvana Thaci will talk about the developments in European human rights bodies. Katitza Rodriguez will speak about how the 13 Principles on the Application of Human Rights to Communications Surveillance have been recognized, applied or ignored by national systems and international bodies. Eduardo Bertoni will speak from the government perspective on how an agency such as a data protection authority relates to standards developed in international human rights bodies. Finally, Luis Fernando García will speak of the coming opportunities to develop surveillance case law in the Inter-American system of human rights.

The moderation and composition of the panel will have representatives of civil society, academia, governments and companies and will be balanced in terms of gender.

Speakers provisionally confirmed:

Bertoni, Eduardo
Rodriguez, Katitza
Thaci, Elvana