Renata Avila was a Non-Resident Fellow at the Digital Civil Society Lab in Partnership with the Center for Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity (2019-2020, 2020-2021).
Renata, (Guatemalan), Executive Director Fundación Ciudadanía Inteligente, is an international Human Rights lawyer, specialising in the next wave of technological challenges to preserve and advance our rights, and better understand the politics of data and their implications on trade, democracy and society. She is currently writing a book on digital colonialism and designing international policies, and prototyping technology for a democratic future. She is a Board member for Creative Commons. She also serves as a Board Member of the Common Action Forum and a Global Trustee of the Think Tank Digital Future Society. She also serves as Advisory Board Member for Article 19 Mexico & Central America and Democracia Abierta. She volunteers in https://diem25.org/, a movement to save democracy in Europe, as an elected member of its Coordinating Collective and co-convener of the Progressive International.
Persevering through this pandemic period, Renata Avila adapted her strengths in networking and international diplomacy to bring the <A+> Alliance for Inclusive Algorithms into being. Avila and her colleagues made the most of remote, small group meetings – as well as “roaming the chat box” instead of working the hallways of UN meetings – to assemble an advisory board, set a research agenda, and establish this global network focused on feminist technology from the global majority.
While it was a difficult and laborious process to curate the right group of people for the Alliance network–a process not unlike “fishing” in a pool of applicants for the cream of the crop–the fruit of Avila’s labor will be sweet: over the next three years, the Alliance is dedicated to producing 90 papers, 10 prototypes, and 3 pilots in the Middle East, Latin America, and South Asia. Never one to waste a moment, Avila will spend the rest of her time advocating for stopping, thinking, and co-designing as we come out of this pandemic and back into the world; technology alone, she cautions, will never save us.