Students in UC Berkeley’s Human Rights Investigations Lab learn how to verify videos of potential war crimes.


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News and Events

Meet our 2017 Human Rights Center Fellows—working for rights and justice in 11 countries 

Congratulations to our 2017 Human Rights Center Fellows, who will work with survivors from San Francisco to Mongolia. Read about the Fellows and their projects!

Special advanced screening of the documentary Finding Oscar

Thursday, April 20, 2017 at 5:30pm
UC Berkeley Law, Room 110, Boalt Hall

In the forgotten Dos Erres massacre during Guatemala’s decades-long civil war, a young boy was spared, only to be raised by one of the very soldiers who killed his family. Nearly 30 years after the tragedy, it will take a dedicated team to uncover the truth and bring justice to those responsible.

The film will be followed by a Q&A panel featuring:
Ryan Suffern, Director
Eric Stover, Faculty Director, Human Rights Center
Roxanna Altholz, Associate Director, International Human Rights Law Clinic
Josue Revolorio, Guatemalan Human Rights Advocate

Fully bilingual – both Spanish and English sections will be subtitled. Los hispanohablantes son bienvenidos.

Refreshments will be served.

RSVP here. See the trailer here. For directions click here.

San Francisco Chronicle features the Human Rights Investigation Lab

“UC Berkeley program seeks to help prosecute war criminals”

The San Francisco Chronicle featured the Human Rights Investigations Lab on April 14th, looking at their work using open source information to defend human rights. 

Read the article here.

Preventing Gun Violence: What Works and What Stands in the Way

Monday, April 24th at 3pm

UC Berkeley, Social Science Matrix, 8th Floor, Barrows Hall

The keynote event of the Gun Violence in America series, featuring 

Robyn Thomas

Executive Director, Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence 

in conversation with 

Peter Aldhous

Science reporter, Buzzfeed, Professor, UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism 

Refreshments will be served.

RSVP here.

Tech Talk 2: Combating Hate Speech

Wednesday, April 19th at 3:45 to 5:00pm

UC Berkeley Law, Boalt Hall Room 110

Join the Human Rights Center (HRC) for a discussion with Brittan Heller, Director of Technology and Society at the Anti-Defamation League (ADL), on how the ADL is using open source investigation methods to document incidents of hate speech in order to change tech policies and practice. This is the second of three tech events hosted by HRC on the innovative ways experts are using open source investigation methods for human rights.

RSVP here by April 18th! 

Refreshments will be served

Authors discuss book, Hiding in Plain Sight, in ALOUD Podcast Series 

Authors Alexa Koenig, Victor Peskin and Eric Stover discuss their seminal book, Hiding in Plain Sight at the Los Angeles Central Library’s Mark Taper Auditorium as part of the award-winning ALOUD at Central Library speaker series presented by the Library Foundation of Los Angeles. The authors trace the evolution of international justice and how to hold accountable mass murderers like Adolf Eichmann, Saddam Hussein, Ratko Mladic, Joseph Kony, and Osama bin Laden. The authors also discussed the United States’ increasing reliance on military force to capture—or more often simply to kill—suspected terrorists, with little or no judicial scrutiny.

Listen to it here

Presenting the Human Rights Center’s 2016/2017 Annual Report 

Many thanks to everyone who made our work possible in 2016! Take a look at our 2016/2017 Annual Report. 

Stover co-produces PBS’s Dead Reckoning to air nationwide on March 28

The Human Rights Center’s Faculty Director Eric Stover has co-produced with producer and editor Jonathan Silvers a new three-hour PBS series, Dead Reckoning: War, Crime, and Justice from WWII to the War on Terror, which follows war crimes investigators and prosecutors as they pursue some of the world’s most notorious war criminals—notably Adolf Eichmann, Saddam Hussein, Radovan Karadzic, Charles Taylor, and Efraín Ríos Montt. The documentary airs nationwide on PBS stations (check your local listings) on March 28. Visit for more information. 

PBS NewsHour features Human Rights Investigations Lab

“A new generation of human rights investigators turns to high-tech methods” 

The PBS NewsHour aired a story on February 13 about our Human Rights Investigations Lab and our work with Amnesty International’s Digital Verification Corps (and students at the University of Essex and University of Pretoria).

Watch the story here! 

Gunfight: UCLA Law Prof Adam Winkler on the history of gun laws what to expect in Trump’s America

image-1UCLA Law Professor Adam Winkler discussed his acclaimed book Gunfight, which probes four centuries of America’s fixation on the right to bear arms. Winkler argues that guns―not abortion rights, race, or religion―are at the heart of America’s cultural divide. Probing the landmark Heller case, which invalidated a law banning handguns in the nation’s capital, he will break down the  fight between gun-rights advocates and gun-control lobbyists. 

Read the Berkeley Human Rights Q&A with Adam Winkler

The Resistance: Alexa Koenig is featured in San Francisco’s Magazine along with other champions for justice

alexa-in-sf-magThe Human Rights Center’s Alexa Koenig is featured in San Francisco Magazine this month as part of “The Resistance”—Bay Area lawmakers, activists, advocates, and lawyers fighting for justice in this new political era. Read the article here. 

Freccero spearheads Call to Action for women’s rights in Greek refugee camps

20161017_125352-1More than a dozen international and national aid agencies working in Greece’s refugee and migrant camps have just signed a Call to Action  to improve gender-based violence protection, increase access to sexual and reproductive health services, and promote women’s empowerment.  Julie Freccero, associate director of the Sexual Violence Program, who spearheaded the effort, has been deployed in Greece since August with the United Nations Population Fund to improve the response to gender-based violence in the camps. The Call to Action developed from a Women’s Rights Briefing Paper that Freccero created with colleagues from Oxfam and other key organizations to synthesize research and advocacy in response to the refugee crisis.  

Read about Freccero’s work.

Human Rights Investigations Lab in the news

screen-shot-2017-01-31-at-12-56-20-pmThe Human Rights Investigations Lab trained 40 students how to use open source techniques to document and verify potential human rights abuses and potential war crimes. The lab was featured in New Scientist—Human rights squad detects abuse in social media imagesand noted in a video about the Syrian Archive. PBS NewsHour has just shot a story about the Lab that is expected to air in February. This semester, we have more than 60 students in the lab working on five projects.

Read about the Lab.

Gun Violence in America event: Urban Gun Violence: Realities and Solutions

dsc_1158Our Urban Gun Violence: Realities and Solutions event at the Social Science Matrix this week featured Pastor Mike McBride, Director for Urban Strategies/LIVE FREE Campaign with the PICO National Network; Reygan Harmon, Ceasefire Project Manager, City of Oakland, and former Oakland Senior Policy Advisor on Public Safety Mike McLively, Staff Attorney at the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence and Leader, Healing Communities in Crisis Initiative. The event focused on hands-on solutions in Richmond, Oakland, and nationwide, delivered by frontline policymakers and advocates. A video will be available next week. 

Watch the video!