Universiteit Leiden

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Workshop ‘Disinformation and Human Rights in Context’

Wednesday 24 January 2024
Academy Building
Rapenburg 72
2311 GJ Leiden
Telders Auditorium

On Wednesday 24 January 2024, the Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies (Leiden University) and the University of Amsterdam Institute for Information Law organize a workshop on Disinformation and Human Rights in Context. This workshop, organized with the support of the Netherlands Network for Human Rights Research, brings together speakers from different (academic) backgrounds to discuss the dynamic interaction between human rights and disinformation. How do emerging technologies change the media landscape and how does this impact fundamental rights? Which groups are disproportionately affected by online hate speech and how does this unfold in times of armed conflict? How has disinformation infiltrated scientific discussions on climate change, public health policy and academic freedom? And one of the most pressing issues across the board: how do we identify and evidence disinformation and the impact it has on the enjoyment of our rights? 

To answer these questions, the program consist of three panels and plenty of room for discussion.  

09:30 – 10:00              Walk-in

10:00 – 10:30              Opening and Introduction by Anna Smulders (Leiden University, Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies)

10:30 – 12:00              Panel I The Media, Online Platforms and Emerging Technologies

Moderator: Leon Trapman (Radboud University, Department of Constitutional Law )


  • Fred Gersten (Independent Expert)
  • Urška Umek (Information Society Department Council of Europe)
  • Deniz Wagner (OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media)
  • Paddy Leerssen (University of Amsterdam, Institute for Information Law)

12:00 – 13:30              Lunch

13:30 – 15:00              Panel II National Minorities, Gender and Disinformation

Moderator: Emma de Vries (Leiden University, Europa Institute)


  • Tarlach McGonagle (Leiden University, Constitutional and Administrative Law Department / University of Amsterdam, Institute for Information Law)
  • Bojana Kostic (Digital Rights Researcher and Advocate)
  • Naomi Appelman (University of Amsterdam, Institute for Information Law)

15:00 – 15:30              Coffee break

15:30 – 17:00              Panel III Researching Disinformation

Moderator: Anna Smulders (Leiden University, Grotius Centre for International Legal Studies)


  • Michael Klos (Leiden University, Jurisprudence)
  • Henning Lahmann (Leiden University, eLaw – Center for Law and Digital Technology)
  • Peter Burger (Leiden University, Applied Linguistics / Nieuwscheckers)
  • Giancarlo Fiorella (Bellingcat)

17:00 – 17:15              Closing

17:15 – 18:00              Drinks

For more information, find the programme here.

In order to attend the event, registration is required via this registration link.  

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