Download a PDF of the conference program (hard copies will be distributed at check-in).
Wednesday, May 14
6:00-7:15pm Berkman Center/Institute of Politics Forum Event
Civic Engagement and the Youth Vote in the 2008 Elections
Harvard Kennedy School Institute of Politics
79 JFK Street, Cambridge, MA
7:30-9:00pm A reception will follow at the Malkin Penthouse, 5th floor of Littauer, 79 JFK Street.
Please note the reception is for B@10 conference attendees only.
Thursday, May 15
All plenary sessions on May 15 will be conducted in Ames Courtroom of Austin Hall on the campus of Harvard Law School. For directions, a map, and travel information, please see this page on our wiki.
8:30-9:00 Registration / Breakfast Austin Hall Rotunda
9:00-9:30 Welcome [video] Ames Courtroom
Dean, Harvard Law School
WilmerHale Professor of Intellectual Property Law, Harvard Law School
Faculty Director, Berkman Center for Internet & Society
William F. Weld Professor of Law, Harvard Law School
Founder and Faculty Co-Director, Berkman Center for Internet & Society
9:30-11:00 The Future of The Internet (Take 1) [video]
Jack N. and Lillian R. Berkman Visiting Professor for Entrepreneurial Legal Studies, Harvard Law School
Chair in Internet Governance and Regulation, Oxford University
Co-Founder and Faculty Co-Director, Berkman Center for Internet & Society
Jonathan Zittrain's recently-published book, The Future of the Internet -- And How to Stop It, foresees troubled times for the Internet -- in particular, for the open ethos so fundamental to its success. This session will highlight some of the themes and arguments from the book, including the ways in which open systems can be abused at the hardware, software, content, and social layers of our information technology ecosystem -- and the opportunities for response that do not eliminate the generative character we are trying to save..
11:00-11:30 Coffee Break Ames Courtroom
11:30-1:00 Politics [video]
Clinical Professor of Law, Harvard Law School
Executive Director, Berkman Center for Internet & Society
The Internet is changing how politics is conducted at every level, from local to national to global. Ten years ago, some predicted the online utopia of "everyone a pamphleteer." It's clear that the changes taking place on the Internet are more subtle than some anticipated, that they vary by place and context, and that the changes are not all good. Optimists argue that things are on the right track -- that the development of the "networked public sphere" is, overall, a very positive thing for democratic institutions. Others are not so sure, pointing to the possible dystopia of citizens surrounding themselves with only the information they wish to hear, censors blocking important political speech at national borders, and a growing culture of surveillance on the web. Against this background, what types of interventions could ensure that the growing use of networked technologies helps to strengthen democracies rather than to undercut their development?
View and comment on some related assertions and ideas.
1:00-2:00 Lunch Ropes Gray Room, Pound Hall 212
2:15-3:45 Cooperation [video]
Jack N. and Lillian R. Berkman Professor of Entrepreneurial Studies, Harvard Law School
Faculty Co-Director, Berkman Center for Internet & Society
Founder of Wikipedia, Berkman Fellow
Wikipedia has become the icon of a different way of looking at how we can be productive and collaborative. Peer production has emerged as a defining feature of the networked information economy and the networked public sphere. Can we seriously begin to imagine that these practices should change our understanding of the possibilities of cooperative human relations? What are the forces pushing against cooperation, and how can they be addressed? What can we learn from life online about how better to design systems, both technical and institutional that will foster cooperation?
3:45-4:15 Coffee Break Austin Hall Rotunda
Executive Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary, Viacom
Former FCC Chairman and Principal, Charles Ross Partners
President, Edventure Holdings
Charles Nesson, Moderator
William F. Weld Professor of Law, Harvard Law School,
Founder and Faculty Director, Berkman Center for Internet & Society
This discussion will focus on the Future of the Internet, presented through the unique perspectives of business, industry and government. Speakers will be asked to consider the best strategies for public media institutions— in partnership with universities, public television and radio, and private businesses— to create a balance between open and closed domains, and have a positive impact on the Net's future. How can these institutions leverage their capacities towards developing online interactive integrated media and educational tools aimed at enhancing the openness of the net?
6:00-8:00 Cocktail Reception Ropes Gray Room, Pound Hall 212
8:00pm Food For Thought Dinners
Friday, May 16
A Note on the Breakout Sessions
On the morning of May 16, we will present six concurrent sessions on various facets of openness, considering its role in learning, architecture, language, innovation, global action, and the public sphere. Formulations of openness—from open code to open courseware, open learning to open access—have undergirded Berkman’s activities and research since its inception. It is a core value that continues to evolve and take on new meaning within different contexts and initiatives.
In the afternoon, we will host a series of breakout sessions, including some that have been designed before the conference, and others that will be determined that morning. Beginning with a plenary of the whole group, you and fellow conference participants will have the opportunity to propose and carry out sessions that are of interest to you.
These tracks will include a diverse mix of sessions, which we trust will be inspiring, energized, and informed by our first day, while touching on topics that span our past development, recent accomplishments, and future agenda. At the end of the day, we will gather as a group for a wrap-up discussion focused on future visions—for the field, for Berkman, and for the Internet itself.
8:30-9:00 Breakfast Ames Courtroom
9:00-9:30 Proposals for Afternoon Breakout Sessions Ames Courtroom
9:30-10:45 Openness Breakout Sessions
From Doc Searls:
The word "open" has been used and abused in computing and networking for as long as both have been around. Yet it is a virtue that we hold as self-evident: a Good Thing.
So naturally, "open" is, in the words of Charlie Nesson, a "foundational" value for the Berkman Center. After building on that foundation for a decade, we'll take these sessions to examine, in an open way, this virtue we serve.
This session will be conducted as a workshop focused on developing a practical strategy for open online education. The goal is to create a model for an online teaching environment that enables a continuing feedback loop between one teacher and many students and classes of students and online curriculum sufficiently engaging to attract and sustain students’ interests in higher education. What type of business plan can sustain this model?
The Internet and the widespread availability of sophisticated digital design tools are radically changing best practice in product and service development. What was until recently a process concentrated within producer firms is now becoming democratized and widely distributed. This fundamental change has widespread consequences. What is the impact of these developments on innovation processes, business models, and government policies?
Nothing matters more than what the Net is. Yet when we call it a "space" or a "stage" or "pipes," we frame it with metaphors that yield very different purposes, laws and business models—also different futures. What different laws and regulation do we get by framing the Net in terms of real estate ("domains," "sites," "commons"), transport ("packets," "content," "pipes") or theater ("audience," "experience")? How do these different frames guide debate over net neutrality, open infrastructure, governance, regulation, public good and business opportunity? Are there other ways of framing the Net that are more useful?
The most impressive features of the Internet may be among those we notice least, because they just work: the "running code" of its low-level architecture on open standards and protocols, atop which anyone can innovate— and many have. Can we preserve this openness and its generative potential—against threats from "traffic-shaping" providers; from parasitic spammers; from proprietary overlays (DRM)? Can we replicate this openness on other networks, from the Internet NG to cell phones/Android to multimedia home-networking? Can new architectures such as mesh networking de-bottleneck the Net even further?
The Internet is remarkably context-dependent, relying on where users are located and what infrastructure they can access. Weather-dependent in Cambodia, subject to invisible and constantly shifting censorship in places like Uzbekistan or China, and still delivered primarily at dial-up speeds in rural areas around the globe, the objective measure of "Internet access" doesn't tell us much about what kinds of content people can access, the interaction and communication modes they adopt, how the technology gets integrated into everyday life and professional practice, and what new applications and developments communities around the world might develop. In these areas of greater constraint, people are innovative and unpredictable in how they adapt and create certain technologies to address local needs. When we look at specific countries and patterns of adoption and usage, how does our understanding of the global Internet change? How does the innovative use of Internet and mobiles in emerging markets point to the future of other emerging technologies?
The disruption of traditional media models and the rise of participatory media in the US and around the world are well-documented but not yet well understood. Are the simultaneous evolution of "new" and "old" news media creating a new, more engaged, more democratic public? Is this process organic and self-correcting or are there areas where the vast market of ideas is not serving the public interest? How can we meaningfully measure the impact of a system that is evolving before our eyes? What interventions are having results?
10:45-11:15 Coffee Break/Self-organizing for Afternoon Breakout Sessions
11:15-12:15 Breakout Sessions I
Technology and Political Transparency, led by Micah Sifry and Ellen Miller, the Sunlight Foundation Langdell South
Other Breakout Sessions TBD by Conference Participants
12:30-1:45 Keynote Lunch [video]
Joshua Micah Marshall, Talking Points Memo
Introduced by Berkman Fellow Dan Gillmor
Ropes Gray Room, Pound Hall 212
2:00-3:00 Breakout Sessions II
Race and the Internet, led by David Harris of the Charles Hamilton Houston Institute for Race and Justice Langdell South
Other Breakout Sessions TBD by Conference Participants
3:15-4:15 Breakout Sessions III
The Dilemma of Games: Moral Choice in a Digital World, led by Gene Koo and Shenja van der Graaf Langdell South
Other Breakout Sessions TBD by Conference Participants
4:15-4:45 Coffee Break Austin Hall Rotunda
4:45-5:30 Onward! [video] Austin North
7:00-10:00 Berkman 10th Anniversary Gala Dinner and Awards Presentation
The Charles Hotel, 1 Bennett Street, Harvard Square
Ticket holders only (advance registration required)