The Bijou Lecture (2023)

Join Elizabeth M. Renieris to explore whether laws designed to protect data can protect people.
We are honoured to have law and policy expert Elizabeth Renieris, an expert on data governance and the human rights implications of new and emerging technologies, as our 2023 Bijou guest lecturer.

The author of 'Beyond Data: Reclaiming Human Rights at the Dawn of the Metaverse', her passion for data protection was ignited at university when a classmate hacked into internal residential house directories, scraped the student ID photos of female residents from their pages and pitted the undergraduate women against each other on a website called Facemash. Her classmate was Mark Zuckerberg, who went on to control one of the most powerful companies in the world. 

The founder and CEO of HACKYLAWYER, Elizabeth has advised the World Bank, the UK Parliament, the European Commission and the US Congress, and a variety of start-ups, global corporations and international and non-governmental organizations alike on law and policy questions related to AI/machine learning, blockchain and digital identity, as well as other new and advanced technologies. A senior research associate at the University of Oxford’s Institute for Ethics in AI Elizabeth has also held fellowships with Stanford University’s Digital Civil Society Lab and the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy at Harvard Kennedy School. She serves as the guest editor to MIT Sloan Management Review’s Responsible AI project and was named to the 2022 list of “100 Brilliant Women in AI Ethics” by Women in AI Ethics.

The Bijou Lecture in a nutshell: 
In this short lecture, Elizabeth explores whether laws focused on *data* can ever effectively protect *people*. This lecture was released to mark the fifth anniversary of the Bailiwick's data protection law coming into force. 

You can watch, listen to, or read The Bijou Lecture. 

Only got 2 minutes? Here's some key points: 
•    We seem to think that if we could just control our data, we could protect against technology related harms and abuses. But privacy is much broader than just having control over data.
•    The early organisation of human life into databases, the trauma of two sequential world wars and in particular, the Nazis racially motivated atrocities, has helped cement international consensus around human rights and shape the values and formed modern day notions of privacy.
•    Privacy is a concept rooted in constitutional and human rights law.
•    We live in an increasingly cyber physical world... a world in which it is increasingly impossible to separate online and offline environments.
•    The human rights framework offers us the only truly human-centric technology neutral approach, and it is our best chance of moving beyond data.