Reflections on The Oxford Internet Institute: “Long Live Democracy?”
Guest Post by Dr. Matthew Crosston
Faculty Member, School of Security and Global Studies
The Oxford Internet Institute (OII) held its biannual Internet, Policy, and Politics conference on September 20-21, 2018 at St. Anne’s College, Oxford University. The conference is one of academia’s leading venues for examining the interplay between technology, politics, and the development of innovative new policy. This year’s event, “Long Live Democracy?”, examined the challenges and opportunities for democratic processes in a digital world.
The conference was organized by OII and the journal Policy and Internet, in collaboration with the European Consortium of Political Research’s standing group on Internet and Politics, Policy Studies Organization (PSO), and American Public University System. Scholars attended from all over the world, including Bar Ilan University, Cornell University, Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Istanbul Bilgi University, London School of Economics, McGill University, Northwestern University, St. Petersburg State University, University of Amsterdam, University of Helsinki, University of St. Andrews, University of Sydney, University of Texas at Austin, and World Bank Group, among others.
APUS Provost Dr. Vernon Smith moderated the “Unsocial Media II: Radicalization” panel, on which I presented a new article, “Virtual Democracy and Jihadi Johns: Cognitive Disconnects and CVE Propaganda,” pending publication by Cyber, Intelligence, and Security. Additionally, our colleague Dr. Erik Bean was part of the “Social Media Regulation I” panel, presenting his work on “Industrial Age Advertising Solutions for a 21st Century Social Network-Driven World.”
Our regular participation in the event positively impacts the university. From a thought leadership standpoint, it is excellent for APUS faculty to have exposure, and be recognized, for their contributions to their respective bodies of knowledge. Invitations are extremely difficult to garner, with an acceptance rate for faculty submissions much lower than that of many other academic conferences.
We are extremely honored to be associated with such distinguished institutions having a shared commitment to academic excellence, lifelong learning and student success. Speaking for my fellow APUS faculty, staff and our students, I’m proud to be part of such a vibrant, proactive and respected institution.