Solidarity in a digitalised world: the need for a new operating system?

Karin M Frodé

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (Book)Researchpeer-review


Karin Frodé recognises that solidarities are made and remade as identities form through our increasingly digital interactions that enable us to conceive of the digital sphere both as a means to facilitate connections but also as a setting that shapes the content of solidarities. Based upon this framing, the chapter considers the extent to which international and other relevant developments account for the impact which the digital sphere has upon both the access to, and content of, solidarities. While various documents and initiatives touch upon solidarity in the digital space, the chapter identifies a disconnect between these tools, as well as the actors seeking to implement them. Frodé’s chapter analyses three specific challenges which the digital sphere poses for solidarities that further or align with human rights: (i) the ‘digital divide’ which leaves billions without meaningful access to digital connectivity; (ii) harmful online practices that spread hatred and intolerance; and (iii) the nature and structure of the digital sphere itself as a result of the influence of technology companies as well as governments over the terms and conditions of digital interactions. In light of these challenges and the fragmented state of existing instruments that seek to address them, the chapter finds that the current digital ‘operating system’ is not necessarily conducive to the formation of solidarities that further or align with human rights.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationResearch Handbook on International Solidarity and the Law
EditorsCecilia M. Bailliet
Place of PublicationCheltenham UK
PublisherEdward Elgar Publishing
Number of pages19
ISBN (Electronic)9781803923758
ISBN (Print)9781803923741
Publication statusPublished - 2024

Publication series

NameResearch Handbooks in International Law series


  • Access to information
  • Cybercrime
  • Digital citizenship
  • Digital cooperation
  • Digital divide
  • Disinformation
  • Hate speech
  • Human rights
  • Identity formation
  • International cooperation
  • International law
  • Non-discrimination
  • Solidarity

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