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March 29: Technology and the Public Interest

March 29: Technology and the Public Interest

In this groundbreaking work, Haochen Sun analyzes the ethical crisis unfolding at the intersection of technology and the public interest. He examines technology companies' growing power and their increasing disregard for the public good. To tackle this asymmetry of power and responsibility, he argues that we must reexamine the nature and scope of the right to technology and dynamically protect it as a human right under international law, a collective right under domestic civil rights law, and potentially a fundamental right under domestic constitutional law. He also develops the concept of fundamental corporate responsibility requiring technology companies to compensate users for their contributions, assume an active role responsibility in upholding the public interest, and counter injustices caused by technological developments. Professor Sun will be joined by Rebooting Social Media visiting scholars Professors Jon Penney and Yong Jin Park to discuss the book's themes and critical issues. Professor Terry Fisher will moderate.

Our events are now open to the public. Please arrive by 12PM ET so we can let you into the building if you do not hold an active Harvard ID. Someone with a BKC name badge will greet you at the main entrance! Due to building restrictions and security, we will be unable to let attendees in past 12:45PM ET.


Haochen Sun is Professor of Law at the University of Hong Kong and will serve as a Visiting Professor at Columbia Law School in April 2023. He specializes in intellectual property, technology law, and Chinese law. His wide-ranging, interdisciplinary scholarship has explored a variety of cutting-edge areas in law and technology, ranging from the legal status of artificial intelligence creations to access to patented medicines and vaccines, IP rights owners’ responsibilities, and the trademark protection of luxury brands. In his latest research projects, he is developing a new approach to regulating social media algorithms and rethinking the epic transformations that have occurred in China’s intellectual property system. His opinions about intellectual property and technology law have appeared in many media outlets such as ForbesThe Los Angeles TimesThe New York TimesSouth China Morning Post, and The Wall Street Journal.

Jon Penney is a legal scholar and social scientist with an expertise at the intersection of law, technology, and human rights. He is an Associate Professor at Osgoode Hall Law School; a Visiting Scholar at Harvard's Institute for Rebooting Social Media and a Faculty Associate at Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society. He is also a long time Research Fellow at the Citizen Lab based at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs and Public Policy. His work on privacy, security, and technology law and policy has received national and international press coverage including coverage in the Washington Post, Reuters, New York Times, WIRED Magazine, CBC News, the Globe and Mail, The Guardian, and Le Monde, among others.

Yong Jin Park is Professor, Howard University and Visiting Scholar, BKC/RSM, Harvard Law School. He works on the effects of emerging technologies in intersection with social and policy problems. Currently, his research focuses on the areas of AI, algorithm, personal data, and digital inequalities. His recent book is The Future of Digital Surveillance (University of Michigan Press, 2021). He was previously a Research Fellow at the Center for Information Technology Policy at Princeton University. He completed his doctorate at the University of Michigan.

Moderated by William (Terry) Fisher, WilmerHale Professor of Intellectual Property Law at Harvard Law School and Director at the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society

Recommended reading:

Technology and the Public Interest, Cambridge University Press (2022)

Past Event
Wednesday, March 29, 2023
12:30 PM - 1:30 PM ET
1557 Massachusetts Ave 5th Floor Room 515
Cambridge, MA 02138 US