Human Rights Electronic Evidence Study

In 2012 CRL completed a two-year study, supported by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, to examine how human rights organizations and activists use digital technologies to document human rights abuses.

Sponsored by the Foundation’s Human Rights and International Justice program, the project analyzed technologies used by human rights monitoring and activist groups in three world regions, to determine how electronically or digitally produced documentation is collected, maintained and protected for long-term use.  

A key focus of the The Human Rights Electronic Evidence Study was the electronically generated documentation of human rights abuses created and collected  by organizations in Mexico, nations in the Russian Federation, and Rwanda. The purpose here was to examine how such documentation is collected and handled, and to ascertain to what extent current practices support the purposes of investigators, prosecutors, courts, international NGOs, and scholars. CRL's research also identified practical measures, tools, and standards for improving practice and ensuring the integrity and durability of electronic evidence. 

For more information, please contact James Simon, Project Director.


Profiles and Reports

Human Rights Electronic Evidence Study - Final Report (February 2012)

Thomson Report: Admissibility of electronic documentation as evidence in U.S. Courts

Rapoport Center Report: New problems in the use of electronic evidence in Human Rights investigations and prosecutions


Human Rights Resources Profile: Web Ecology Project

Human Rights Resources Profile: WITNESS

Human Rights Resources Profile: Ushahidi

Human Rights Resource Profile: Amnesty International--ADAM & AIDAN

The Documentalist

Visit CRL's human rights blog for the latest news, information, and analysis on the role of technology in human rights documentation.