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With democracies across the globe under assault, the University of Chicago Institute of Politics and The Atlantic hosted Disinformation and the Erosion of Democracy, a groundbreaking three-day event exploring the organized spread of disinformation and strategies to respond to it.
The conference, April 6 to 8, explored the roots and scope of the problem, the next-generation threats posed by new technological advances, and the tools and policies required to neutralize them. Panels also discussed the challenge presented when the term disinformation itself becomes fractious, and the tension between free expression and the need to combat wanton and willful disinformation aimed at eroding it.
To find additional details about participating speakers and our agenda, please visit disinfo2022.com.
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Introduced by Zeenat Rahman, executive director of the Institute of Politics
Featuring a moderated discussion with Adrienne LaFrance, executive editor at The Atlantic
Amid an increasingly polarized political environment, social media have enabled the rapid spread of misinformation and disinformation. Tools that helped spawn pro-democracy movements around the world also have been expropriated and manipulated by reactionary forces and malign state actors to spur division, undermine trust, and erode democracies from within. Autocrats have seized on these new technologies to demonize their opponents, promote false narratives, and fan the flames of extreme nationalism. Disinformation, division, and incitement to violence have always been part of the geopolitical playbook. But what does it mean when they are turbocharged by technology?
Featuring: Anne Applebaum, staff writer at The Atlantic, Pulitzer Prize–winning historian, and senior fellow at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and the Agora Institute; David Axelrod, founding director of the Institute of Politics
The David Rubenstein Forum on the University of Chicago’s Hyde Park campus
April 6–8, 2022