Publications

The Berkman Center has established the premier series of scholarly publications on matters related to the Internet, law, and society, known as the Berkman Publication Series, which is jointly published with the Social Science Research Network (SSRN).

Below is a selected list of these works, which includes scholarly papers as well as books, written by Berkman faculty and fellows. To be notified when new reports are added to this list, sign up for our reports release email list.

(For additional writings and blog posts from Berkman community members and projects, which are not included in this series, see our aggregated community blog feed.)

How Participatory Action Research Can Promote Social Change and Help Youth Development

Participatory Action Research (PAR) is a process through which people investigate meaningful social topics, participate in research to understand the root causes of problems that directly impact them, and then take action to influence policies through the dissemination of their findings to policymakers and stakeholders. Like other types of youth organizing, PAR promotes youth’s involvement in their communities and the development of leadership skills. It emphasizes the development of young people’s knowledge, skills, and abilities to be experts on issues of importance to them, and catalyze systemic change in collaboration with their peers and supportive adults.

Authored by
  • Cara Berg Powers
  • Erin Allaman

17 Dec 2012

Out of the Box: Positive Development & Social Change Through the Arts

From early childhood to adolescence, the arts can foster youth movements for social change through positive development. Students who experience high levels of arts enrichment show greater academic performance, enrollment in and graduation from high school and college, civic and community service, news consumption, and engagement in local politics. Moreover, participation in the arts—even as a spectator—predicts increases in civic engagement, tolerance and altruism, regardless of age, race, or education.

Authored by
  • Ping Ho

17 Dec 2012

The Value of Youth Organizing

Across the country, adolescents have become deeply involved in struggles for equity and social justice, as they work to promote a kinder, braver world. Although youth have long been leaders in social change efforts, today’s young people are increasingly supported in this work through youth organizing programs. This paper explains what youth organizing is, identifies four ways in which it benefits the young people involved, offers suggestions for mitigating any downsides of participation, and addresses barriers that youth organizing groups may face.

Authored by
  • Jerusha Conner

17 Dec 2012

Youth Organizations and Positive Development: Lessons Learned from a Century of Girl Scouting

Since its inception in 2000, the Girl Scout Research Institute has employed a research-to-action approach so that insights from our work with girls and young women can directly inform Girl Scouts of the USA’s program and policy development, as well as impact the larger youth development field. In the last decade, GSRI’s research and evaluation work has touched numerous organizations in the public and private spheres, making a practical impact on the lives of youth and providing other organizations with evidence needed to make a case for their own work.

17 Dec 2012

Engaging Youth, Serving Community: Social Change Lessons from a 4H Rural Youth Development Program

Social change targeted at empowering youth requires youth and adults to work together as equals. Youth-adult partnerships create a platform to amplify youth voices. To succeed, youth-adult partnerships must be built on open communication and equal voice. Using a case study, this paper shares six broadly applicable lessons learned through the Engaging Youth, Serving Community (ESYC) program. Based on evaluation and understanding of the EYSC experience, it highlights examples of how youth-adult partnerships can promote social change and civic engagement.

Authored by
  • Donna J. Peterson
  • Barbara A. Baker
  • JoAnne Leatherman
  • Michael E. Newman
  • Sally Miske

17 Dec 2012

Open Wireless vs. Licensed Spectrum: Evidence from Market Adoption

The paper reviews evidence from eight wireless markets: mobile broadband; wireless healthcare; smart grid communications; inventory management; access control; mobile payments; fleet management; and secondary markets in spectrum. I find that markets are adopting unlicensed wireless strategies in mission-critical applications, in many cases more so than they are building on licensed strategies.

Authored by
  • Yochai Benkler

6 Nov 2012

Bullying in a Networked Era: A Literature Review

This research update presents an aggregation and summary of recent academic literature on youth bullying. The purpose of this document is to “translate” scholarly research for a concerned public audience, which may include but is not limited to parents, caregivers, educators, and practitioners. This translation highlights recent findings and developments in the literature and makes them accessible to the informed but non-expert reader.

Authored by
  • Nathaniel Levy
  • Sandra Cortesi
  • Urs Gasser
  • Edward Crowley
  • Meredith Beaton
  • June Casey
  • Caroline Nolan

17 Sep 2012

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Interoperability Case Study: Cloud Computing

This case study is part of an ongoing series developed in support of a larger text on interoperability by John Palfrey and Urs Gasser - Interop: The Promise and Perils of Highly Interconnected Systems (Basic Books, June 2012). It suggests that greater scientific and technological reform, balanced with salient consideration of legal and social factors (such as user behavior and expectations), is required for successful interoperability in cloud computing.

Authored by
  • Matthew Becker

16 Aug 2012

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E-books in Libraries: A Briefing Document developed in preparation for a Workshop on E-Lending in Libraries

This briefing document was developed with helpful inputs from industry stakeholders and other practitioners in preparation for the “E-Books in Libraries” workshop, hosted on February 24, 2012, by the Berkman Center for Internet & Society with the generous support of the Charles H. Revson Foundation.

Authored by
  • John Palfrey
  • Urs Gasser
  • David O'Brien

29 Jul 2012

Municipal Government ICT in 3.11 Crisis: Lessons from the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Crisis

A structured field survey of ICT divisions in 13 municipalities in areas devastated by the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami on March 11, 2011 revealed 1) lack of ICT business continuity plans (BCP), 2) importance (and lack of) a comprehensive data backup policy, 3) necessity to deal with diverse situations, 4) importance of organizing a collaborative network among governments and private sectors, 5) importance of securing power and network supply, among many other observations. Recommendations are made based on the findings on how to formulate a BCP that can deal with a diverse range of situations, and policies in creating a collaborative network of a diverse range of organizations to protect vital information infrastructure in crisis. Strong interests were shown toward the use of cloud technologies for future backup purposes.

Authored by
  • Mihoko Sakurai
  • Jiro Kokuryo

30 Jun 2012

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Public-Private Partnerships for Organizing and Executing Prize-Based Competitions

Prizes can be effective tools for finding innovative solutions to the most difficult problems. While prizes are often associated with scientific and technological innovation, prizes can also be used to foster novel solutions and approaches in much broader contexts, such as reducing poverty or finding new ways to educate people. Now that the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act has given all government departments and agencies broad authority to conduct prize competitions, agencies may find themselves looking for resources to learn about prizes and challenges. This paper describes how government agencies can design, build, and execute effective prizes – though these models can easily be adapted to meet the needs of foundations, public interest groups, private companies, and a host of other entities with an interest in spurring innovation.

Authored by
  • Karim R. Lakhani
  • Raymond Tong

10 Jun 2012

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Open Access

In this concise introduction, Peter Suber tells us what open access is and isn’t, how it benefits authors and readers of research, how we pay for it, how it avoids copyright problems, how it has moved from the periphery to the mainstream, and what its future may hold.

Authored by
  • Peter Suber

1 Jun 2012

Interoperability in Information Systems in the Furtherance of Trade

Urs Gasser and John Palfrey have continued to contribute to the World Trade Institute’s NCCR Trade Policy project with a particular focus on the interoperability as an enabler of innovation and creativity in international trade. Over the course of two years, this project has developed three in-depth exploratory studies. This paper takes a historical and institutional approach and focuses on key instances where interoperability at the physical and logical layer of core infrastructure elements has driven innovation in international trade.

Authored by
  • John Palfrey
  • Urs Gasser

31 May 2012

Fostering Innovation and Trade in the Global Information Society: The Different Facets and Roles of Interoperability

Urs Gasser and John Palfrey have continued to contribute to the World Trade Institute’s NCCR Trade Policy project with a particular focus on the interoperability as an enabler of innovation and creativity in international trade. Over the course of two years, this project has developed three in-depth exploratory studies. This study discusses the guiding questions mentioned above from an international law and policy perspective, looking at the interaction among interoperability, innovation, and trade.

Authored by
  • John Palfrey
  • Urs Gasser

31 May 2012

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Mapping Cloud Interoperability in the Globalized Economy: Theory and Observation from Practice

Urs Gasser and John Palfrey have continued to contribute to the World Trade Institute’s NCCR Trade Policy project with a particular focus on the interoperability as an enabler of innovation and creativity in international trade. Over the course of two years, this project has developed three in-depth exploratory studies. This study is focused on the role, current debates, and associated benefits and challenges in establishing a system of interoperability for information and information systems in the service of trade in a global economy over time.

Authored by
  • John Palfrey
  • Urs Gasser
  • Matthew Becker

31 May 2012

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Briefing Document: Public Networks for Public Safety

A Workshop on the Present and Future of Mesh Networks

The Berkman Center for Internet & Society is pleased to present this briefing document, which was developed as part of our March 30th workshop on "Public Networks for Public Safety: A Workshop on the Present and Future of Mesh Networking.” The event provided a starting point for conversation about whether mesh networks could be adopted within consumer technologies to enhance public safety communications and empower and connect the public while simultaneously improving public safety.

Authored by
  • Jonathan Zittrain
  • Alicia Solow-Niederman

29 May 2012

Salience vs. Commitment: Dynamics of Political Hashtags in Russian Twitter

Social media sites like Twitter enable users to engage in the spread of contagious phenomena: everything from information and rumors to social movements and virally marketed products. In particular, Twitter has been observed to function as a platform for political discourse, allowing political movements to spread their message and engage supporters, and also as a platform for information diffusion, allowing everyone from mass media to citizens to reach a wide audience with a critical piece of news.

Authored by
  • John Kelly
  • Vladimir Barash

10 Apr 2012

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Guide to the IRS Decision-Making Process under Section 501(c)(3) for Journalism and Publishing Non-Profit Organizations

Until and unless there is action in Congress to facilitate tax exemptions for journalism non-profits, news organizations seeking 501(c)(3) status must learn how to structure their operations to meet the existing standards applied by the IRS. To that end, this guide is intended to provide practical information regarding the standards that the IRS applies in determining whether to grant federal tax-exempt status to a non-profit organization under Section 501(c)(3).

Authored by
  • Jeffrey Hermes

2 Apr 2012

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Mapping Russian Twitter

Drawing from a corpus of over 50 Million Russian language tweets collected between March 2010 and March 2011, the Berkman research team created a network map of 10,285 users comprising the ‘discussion core’ of Russian Twitter, and clustered them based on a combination of network features. The resulting segmentation revealed key online constituencies active in Russian Twitter. The major topical groupings in Russian Twitter include: Political, Instrumental, CIS Regional, Technology, and Music.

Authored by
  • Bruce Etling
  • Rob Faris
  • John Palfrey
  • Urs Gasser
  • John Kelly
  • Karina Alexanyan
  • Vladimir Barash

20 Mar 2012

Exploring Russian Cyberspace: Digitally-Mediated Collective Action and the Networked Public Sphere

This paper summarizes the major findings of a three-year research project to investigate the Internet’s impact on Russian politics, media and society. We employed multiple methods to study online activity: the mapping and study of the structure, communities and content of the blogosphere; an analogous mapping and study of Twitter; content analysis of different media sources using automated and human-based evaluation approaches; and a survey of bloggers; augmented by infrastructure mapping, interviews and background research.

Authored by
  • Bruce Etling
  • Rob Faris
  • John Palfrey
  • Urs Gasser
  • Hal Roberts
  • John Kelly
  • Karina Alexanyan
  • Vladimir Barash

2 Mar 2012

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