2 Oct 2018Washington, DC

Atlantic Council StratCom Conference

State and non-state actors’ interference in the US and European elections, as well as use of social media platforms to spread false narratives and manipulate the political discourse, have jolted US and European policy-makers into action. Yet, while Western democracies are slowly crafting their response, disinformation campaigns threaten to distort elections worldwide.

In response to this growing threat, the Atlantic Council hosted StratCom in Washington, DC, to bring together key stakeholders, researchers, government officials, and civil society to disseminate best practices among the global community.

The event addressed the tools and methods used by both state and non-state actors to spread disinformation, target elections, and new technologies aimed at destabilising democracies worldwide.

ISD’s Head of Outreach and Networks, Zahed Amanullah presented at the opening panel, Beyond Europe: How Disinformation Campaigns Affect Democracies Globally, discussing ISD’s work in Kenya facilitating civil society campaigns against electoral violence and extremist recruitment during the 2017 presidential elections.

You can watch the panel discussion in full here.

StratCom featured additional discussions on: Interference in European Elections: Responses and LessonsDark Forces: Exposing the Kremlin’s Influence Operations; and Click Bait!: Algorithms, Radicalization, and the Fight for Our Attention.

Keynote addresses were presented by US Senator Christopher Murphy, The Hon. Christopher Krebs, Under Secretary, National Protection and Programs Directorate, US Department of Homeland Security; Ms. Lyudmila Savchuk, internet activist who infiltrated the Russian Internet Research Agency; Mr. Tristan HarrisCo-founder, Center for Humane Technology; and Ms. Maria Ressa, president of independent Philippine magazine Rappler, which has been targeted by the Duterte government.