Responsible Technology

Developing a common understanding of the digital technology ecosystem


Cathrine Block Veiberg, IMR

About the Action Coalition

The Action Coalition on Responsible Technology is working to improve human rights due diligence efforts and activities in relation to development and use of digital technologies. The UN Guiding Principles clarifies that businesses have a responsibility to respect human rights and outlines varying approaches that reflect a business’ involvement in negative impacts.

A critical first step for businesses is to understand their impacts, before then attempting to address or mitigate them. However, in the digital ecosystem it is challenging for any one business to do that without understanding the bigger picture context in which that company operates. By developing a common understanding of the digital technology ecosystem, the Action Coalition aims to provide a framework to improve understandings of digital ecosystem actors’ responsibilities and highlight possible actions, including collaborative and proactive measures, to address negative impacts.

Read more about the Action Coalition here

Output during Year of Action

1. Strategy workshop: The Action Coalition members will conduct an initial Strategy workshop on 16 February 2022 to discuss guidance and knowledge resources and gaps related to ‘responsible technology, planned activities related to those gaps and necessary collective efforts and activities.

2. Thematic workshops: Throughout the year of action, the Coalition will host a series of thematic workshops related to the guidance and knowledge gaps identified, focusing on the lessons learned from the individual Action Coalition members, fx in connection with RightsCon in June 2022. The workshops will bring together stakeholders with an interest in the theme in question.

3. Thematic briefs: For each theme, and as a follow-up to the workshops, members of the Action Coalition will produce thematic briefs. This may include e.g. a mapping of the value-chain actors in relation to a variety of technologies (e.g. 5G networks, surveillance, social platforms, automated decisionmaking in public service delivery), stakeholder engagement guidance, policy-coherence analysis of regulatory developments on digital technologies that include human rights related requirements.

4. Update on progress session In June 2022: halfway through the year of action, the action coalition will present an update on progress.

5. Overview report: At the end of the year of action, the Action Coalition will develop a brief public output (e.g. 8-12 pages), summarising the activities of the action coalition and its members. The Action Coalition may seek to present the public output to the Biden Democracy Summit.

  • The Danish Institute for Human Rights (IMR)
  • UN Human Rights’ B-Tech project
  • Global Network Initiative (GNI)
  • Ericsson
  • Telia Company
  • BSR
Past events
09 May2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Copenhagen Consultation: Action coalition on responsible technology

This Copenhagen Consultation brings together Danish as well as international stakeholders in a hybrid event (in Denmark and online), to discuss the Tech for Democracy Initiative, the Action Coalition and its workstreams.

In 2021, the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs initiated the Tech for Democracy Initiative.

The Action Coalition on Responsible Technology has been developed as a part of this initiative to bring together business, civil society, academia and governmental actors to further human rights considerations in the development and use of technology.

For the 2022 Year of Action, the Action Coalition is organising a number of activities under 3 workstreams:

Ecosystem Mapping
Stakeholder Engagement
Policy Coherence

14.00-14.30: Welcome and introductions. Tour de table introductions to off-and online participants
14.30-15.00: About the Tech for Democracy Initiative and the Action Coalition
15.00-15.15: Break
15.15-16.00: Roundtable discussion
A more detailed agenda and pre-reads will be shared closer to the date.

Registration: Please register via Teams.