Digital Policy

ISD’s digital policy work seeks to create a safer online space that encourages free speech whilst championing human rights.

ISD’s digital policy work helps to connect and inform national governments, regulators, tech companies, international organisations and researchers to develop coordinated regulatory and policy responses to a range of online harms, from terrorism and extremism to hate and disinformation.

We provide cutting edge research insights and policy analysis to key stakeholders such as Facebook, Google, Microsoft and Twitter, and multilateral organisations such as the European Union, the Global Counter Terrorism Forum (GCTF), the United Nations Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate (UN-CTED), the New Zealand-led Christchurch Call and the Global Internet Forum to Counter-Terrorism (GIFCT).

Digital Policy Lab
ISD’s Digital Policy Lab (DPL) is a new inter-governmental working group focused on charting the regulatory and policy path forward to prevent and counter disinformation, hate speech, extremism and terrorism online. It is comprised of a core group of senior representatives of relevant ministries and regulators from key liberal democratic countries. The DPL is intended to foster inter-governmental exchange, provide policy makers with access to sector-leading expertise and research, and build an international community of policy practice around key regulatory challenges in the digital policy space.

Informing Legislation & Regulation
Through initiatives like the DPL, ISD engages with key stakeholders and civil society partners to inform the development of digital regulation and policies such as the EU’s Digital Services Act (DSA) and European Democracy Action Plan (EDAP), as well as country-level legislation such as the upcoming UK Online Safety Bill.

Good Web Project
Governments around the world are pushing for changes to internet governance and regulation to safeguard democracy from disinformation, and citizens from online harms. However, without a principled vision for the internet, democratic governments risk falling behind authoritarian states and technopolistic industry giants in the race to reshape the most important international political, cultural and social space in existence. In doing so, our democratic traditions, values, governments and societies are put in jeopardy.

ISD, alongside partners Demos, Arena at Johns Hopkins and the Alliance for Securing Democracy at the German Marshall Fund, have launched the Good Web Project to lay out a vision the future of the internet that is compatible with liberal democracy. The project seeks to measure and build public support for an internet that resists the authoritarian alternative, and inform and empower policy-makers to create a credible human rights compliant alternative.

Alongside our network of government, civil society and academic stakeholders, ISD and our partners will use our expertise to define, measure and advocate for an internet that strengthens liberal democracy. We will convene and build consensus on the principles required for a better internet and build the evidence base required for change, moving the debate beyond a narrow focus on countering online harms and towards proactively defining an open, liberal and democratic model for the future of our online spaces.

Global Counter Terrorism Forum (GCTF)
With the support of the GCTF and the Governments of Australia, Switzerland and the United Kingdom, in 2019 ISD launched a Policy Toolkit to build on the Zurich-London Recommendations on Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism and Terrorism Online we developed in 2017. The Toolkit, available in English, French and Arabic, was formally presented at the GCTF Coordinating Committee Meeting in September 2019 on the margins of the UN General Assembly in New York. It outlines approaches for governments to efficiently and sustainably collaborate with private sector technology companies and civil society organisations based on shared responsibilities, while ensuring that policies are respectful of human rights and the rule of law, and are context-specific and gender-sensitive.

Sasha Havlicek speaking at the CVE Summit, Washington, DC, 2015

Jacob Davey testifying on the far right before the UK Home Affairs Committee, London, 2018

Latest Digital Policy Publications

ISD’s Digital Policy team

Sasha Havlicek
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Sasha Havlicek

Co-Founder and CEO

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Sasha Havlicek
Sasha Havlicek

Co-Founder and CEO

Sasha Havlicek is Co-Founder and CEO of ISD, having spearheaded ISD’s pioneering research and data analysis, digital education, policy advisory, training, tech and communications programmes. With a background in conflict resolution and an expertise in extremism, digital information operations and electoral interference, she has advised a range of governments at the highest levels and has spearheaded partnerships with the UN, EU Commission and Global Counter-Terrorism Forum. She has also worked with the private and civil society sectors to promote innovation, including developing major programmes run in partnership with Google, FB and Microsoft. Sasha serves as an expert advisor to the UK Counter-Extremism Commission and the Mayor of London’s counter-extremism programme, and is a member of the European Council on Foreign Relations. Sasha previously served as Senior Director at the EastWest Institute where she led conflict resolution programming. Sasha has testified before US Congress, the UK Parliament and is a regular commentator in the media (CNN, BBC, Channel 4 News and other networks).
Chloe Colliver
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Chloe Colliver

Head of Digital Policy and Strategy

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Chloe Colliver
Chloe Colliver

Head of Digital Policy and Strategy

Chloe Colliver is Head of Digital Policy and Strategy at ISD, where she leads a global team of analysts studying disinformation and extremism online, including programmes of work focusing on the German, European Parliamentary, UK, Swedish and US Elections. She has worked on the development of the Global Internet Forum to Counter Terrorism and has provided expert testimony to the UK Home Affairs Select Committee, the Swedish, New Zealand, Canadian, French and German governments on digital policy and tech regulation. She has been featured at CNN, the BBC, Sky News, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Wired and Bloomberg. She is the co-author of ISD reports Spin Cycle: Information Laundering on Facebook, Developing a Civil Society Response to Online Manipulation, The 101 of Disinformation Detection, Click Here For Outrage: Disinformation in the European Parliamentary Elections 2019, The First 100 Days: Coronavirus and Crisis Management on Social Media Platforms, and Hoodwinked: Coordinated Inauthentic Behaviour on Facebook. Chloe is a Yale Mellon Fellow and sits on the Advisory Board for Accountable Tech.
Henry Tuck
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Henry Tuck

Head of Policy & Programmes

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Henry Tuck
Henry Tuck

Head of Policy & Programmes

Henry Tuck is Head of Policy & Programmes at ISD for work across Europe and the Five Eyes countries. He is responsible for the overall management of the Institute’s research programme, including oversight of all publications, research methods, and ethics across a variety of topics, from disinformation to the far-right and extremism online. Henry also leads ISD’s policy-focused work to counter online harms in collaboration with a range of key stakeholders, advising leading governments, international organisations and major private sector tech companies. He is the co-author of ISD reports An imprecise science: Assessing interventions for the prevention, disengagement and de-radicalisation of left and right-wing extremists, The Counter-Narrative Monitoring & Evaluation Handbook, Shooting in the right direction: Anti-ISIS Foreign Fighters in Syria and Iraq, and The Counter-narrative Handbook. Henry holds a Masters in International Conflict Studies from Kings College London, and a BA in Philosophy, Politics and Economics from Durham University.
Milo Comerford
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Milo Comerford

Head of Policy & Research, Counter-Extremism

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Milo Comerford
Milo Comerford

Head of Policy & Research, Counter-Extremism

Milo Comerford is Head of Policy & Research, Counter Extremism, leading ISD’s work developing innovative research approaches and policy responses to extremism. Milo regularly briefs senior decision makers around the world on the challenge posed by extremist ideologies, and advises governments and international agencies on building effective strategies for countering extremism. He was previously Senior Analyst at the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, where he led major research projects on Salafi-jihadi propaganda, international educational responses to extremism, and the transnational far right. His writing and research features frequently in international media and he has made recent broadcast appearances on BBC News, Sky News and Al Jazeera.
Jennie King
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Jennie King

Senior Policy Manager

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Jennie King
Jennie King

Senior Policy Manager

Jennie King is a Senior Policy Manager at ISD. She supports programme design, policy outreach and strategy across the organisation. Jennie previously served as MENA Regional Director Arts, Assistant Country Director Egypt and Co-Director Hungary for the British Council, the UK’s international body for cultural relations. She also served as an Attaché for the Guatemalan Diplomatic Mission. She is the co-author of the ISD report Hoodwinked: Coordinated Inauthentic Behaviour on Facebook. Jennie read Arabic and Spanish at Pembroke College, Cambridge, receiving a Foundation Scholarship and the Marie Shamma’a Frost Prize for Oriental Studies.
Christian Schwieter
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Christian Schwieter

Policy & Research Analyst, ISD Germany

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Christian Schwieter
Christian Schwieter

Policy & Research Analyst, ISD Germany

Christian Schwieter is a Policy & Research Analyst at ISD Germany, working across projects in the research and policy division. Christian focuses on the quantitative analysis of online political communication, with an emphasis on the effect of online regulation on far-right actors. At ISD, Christian co-led the pilot phase of the Digital Policy Lab, a new intergovernmental working group focused on charting the online policy path forward to prevent and counter disinformation, hate speech and extremism. He also leads the analysis of the online debate surrounding climate change in Germany, in anticipation of the upcoming Federal Elections and COP26 summit. Previously, Christian worked as a researcher for the Programme on Technology & Democracy (previously the Computational Propaganda Project) at the Oxford Internet Institute, where he co-authored reports on state-backed information operations relating to the Covid-19 pandemic. In 2019, Christian was the Specialist Adviser on Disinformation Matters for the UK Digital, Culture, Media and Sports Select Committee at the House of Commons, led by Damian Collins MP. Christian holds an MSc in Social Science of the Internet from the University of Oxford and a BA from Leiden University College The Hague.
Sara Bundtzen
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Sara Bundtzen

Research and Policy Associate, ISD Germany

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Sara Bundtzen
Sara Bundtzen

Research and Policy Associate, ISD Germany

Sara Bundtzen is a Research and Policy Associate at ISD Germany. She is involved in the Digital Policy Lab (DPL), a new intergovernmental working group focused on policy responses to prevent and counter online disinformation, hate speech and extremism. Sara previously worked at the Federal Ministry of Defence and NATO HQ. She holds an MA in International Security from Sciences Po Paris and a BSc in European Studies from the University of Southern Denmark.