As part of the official launch of the Born This Way Foundation, The
Symposium on Youth Meanness and Cruelty took place at Harvard Law
School on February 29th, 2012. Generously supported by the John D.
& Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and hosted by the Berkman
Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University in partnership
with the Harvard Graduate School of Education, the Symposium brought
together experts, researchers, policymakers, foundation
representatives, youth, and others to discuss research and findings
related to bullying, meanness, and cruelty, while also emphasizing
positive concepts like healthy relationships, civic engagement, and
In addition to an introduction to the
program overall (Section I), this report provides: high level notes
from each of the sessions that took place during the Symposium (Section
II), answers generated by Symposium participants in response to four
driving questions that framed the discussions (Section III), and the
central themes that emerged during the day (Section IV).
sections reflect the collation of immediate takeaways from the
Symposium, a synthesis of central themes, and participants' feedback.