University of Reading School of Law School Workshop for Women in Cyber Fellows

In early July, the governments of Australia, Canada, Netherlands, New Zealand and the United Kingdom jointly sponsored a global workshop for participants in the “Women in Cyber Fellowship” program. The Fellows are key diplomats and other government officials involved in international cyber policy and law, including those representing their nations in the ongoing United Nations negotiations regarding the applicability of international law to cyber operations and the development of norms of responsible state behavior in cyberspace.

The workshop, which the School of Law certifies as Executive Education, was co-directed by the School’s Professor Mike Schmitt.  Conducted online, the three-day workshop was offered twice, once for Fellows from the Asia Pacific region and once for those based in Africa and the Americas. The topics ranged from sovereignty in cyberspace and the prohibition on using cyber means to intervene in other state’s internal affairs to the use of cyber weapons during armed conflict.  Much of the discussion understandably centered on malicious cyber operations related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

As the academic partner with numerous governments in international cyber law capacity building, the School of Law is a global leader in ensuring officials around the world understand how international law governs cyber activities and assisting them to build their own national cyber strategies and policies. In July, for instance, week-long Executive Education workshops will be offered for Indonesian officials and for those from throughout the Americas, all of whom are responsible to cyber policy and law in their nations.

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