Close this search box.

Keynote Panels at the Asia-Pacific Digital Rights Forum: Examining the Asia-Pacific digital rights situation, building regional solidarity

With the Asia-Pacific Digital Rights Forum a little over a week away, get to know the speakers and topics for the two keynote panel sessions happening this January 12 and 13, 2023.

The hour-long keynotes will have live translations in Bahasa Indonesia, Burmese, Khmer, and Thai.

Day 1 Keynote Panel: The Asia-Pacific Digital Rights Situation

The COVID-19 pandemic worsened the state of digital rights across the Asia-Pacific. Governments took advantage of the health crisis to normalise authoritarian practices, state surveillance, and unprecedented data collection. From the massive disinformation campaigns that endanger activists in the Philippines to the internet shutdowns in Myanmar and the vaguely-worded and oversweeping laws that limit free speech in Thailand and Indonesia, rights defenders across the region face various digital dangers.

The Forum will cover these and more at the opening keynote panel titled “The Asia-Pacific Digital Rights Situation” on January 12 from 10:30AM to 11:30AM Bangkok time (UTC+7).

Speaking at the Day 1 keynote panel are:

  1. Chat Garcia Ramilo is the current Executive Director of the Association for Progressive Communications, an international network of civil society organisations dedicated to empowering and supporting people working for peace, human rights, development and protection of the environment through the strategic use of information and communications technologies. She previously led the organisation’s women’s programme, having led the development, fundraising, and management of nine multi-country ICT for development projects that focused on gender equality and women’s empowerment.
  2. Vitit Muntarbhorn KBE is a Professor Emeritus at the Faculty of Law, Chulalongkorn University, Bangkok. He has helped the UN in various positions, including UN Special Rapporteur, Independent Expert and member of UN Commissions of Inquiry on human rights. He is currently UN Special Rapporteur on Cambodia, monitoring for the UN Human Rights Council, Geneva.
  3. Helani Galpaya is the Chief Executive Officer of LIRNEasia, a think tank that catalyses policy change through research to improve people’s lives in the Asia-Pacific by facilitating their use of hard and soft infrastructures through the use of knowledge, information and technology. Her research foci and engagements relate to net neutrality, policy and regulatory barriers in Internet access, e-Government and broadband quality of service.

Day 2 Keynote Panel: Building Regional Solidarity and Collaboration on Digital Rights

The second day of the Forum zeroes in on the value of connection among digital rights advocates to explore possibilities for regional solidarity and collaboration to address these shared challenges.

On January 13, hear from digital rights experts as they facilitate the keynote panel titled “Building Regional Solidarity and Collaboration on Digital Rights”. Like on Day 1, the Day 2 keynote panel will also take place from 10:30AM to 11:30AM Bangkok time (UTC+7). The speakers are:

  1. Phet Sayo is the Executive Director of EngageMedia. Prior to leading the organisation, Phet spent 15 years as a Senior Program Officer at the International Development Research Center (IDRC) in New Delhi, India, where he tackled the impacts of widespread access to mobile technologies and the internet in Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
  2. Khin Ohmar is the Founder of the Progressive Voice of Myanmar, a participatory rights-based policy research and advocacy organization rooted in civil society that maintains strong networks and relationships with grassroots organizations and community-based organizations throughout Myanmar. Khin has been a human rights practitioner and advocate since 1988, as a leader of the 8888 Uprising in Myanmar.
  3. Brittany Piovesan is the Chief of Party of Internews’ Greater Internet Freedom program, a three-year, global program that works to preserve an open, interoperable, reliable and secure Internet — and by extension, protects the individuals, civil society organizations, media outlets and vulnerable groups who rely on it to realise fundamental freedoms.

Learn more about the Day 1 Breakout Sessions

Learn more about the Day 2 Breakout Sessions

Join the Asia-Pacific Digital Rights Forum

To sign up for the forum and join these keynote panels, register for an account on

  1. Create your account by filling out the form here.
  2. Complete your profile information.
  3. Select from our various sessions on Days 1 to 3 and save your sessions.

Register for the Asia-Pacific Digital Rights Forum

Comments are closed.