A student from the University of Nottingham is one of only 25 young people worldwide to receive a prestigious award from the Internet Society recognising her work using the internet to make a positive difference.
Kate Green is a PhD student at the EPSRC-funded Horizon Centre for Doctoral Training, which is affiliated with the University of Nottingham’s Horizon Digital Economy Research Institute.
She was nominated for her dedicated commitment to educating others around the topic of digital privacy amongst online health communities. Kate has Crohn’s disease and it is her own experience of this that inspired her work.
The Internet Society’s 25 under 25 program is one of the many initiatives supporting the Internet Society’s 25th Anniversary, the program recognises 25 young people from around the globe who are passionate about using the Internet to make a positive impact in their communities and the world. The winners received their awards at a special ceremony in Los Angeles.
Kate said: “I have always been passionate about online privacy, in particular around health forums and groups, an interest that stems from my own health issues. When I learned that popular online support groups for individuals suffering from chronic illness often share the personal data of users with advertisers and pharmaceutical companies I wanted to help fellow members make their own informed decisions about sharing personal information.”
Fair, safe internet
Kate designed and delivered an “underground” online privacy class, providing Internet users with the tools to determine for themselves what trade-offs they are willing to make between privacy and the benefits of specific websites and social media sites. She also works directly with young people to ensure they are proactive in their own online representation. Kate equips teachers and community leaders with educational resources to further spread awareness of online rights and Internet privacy concerns. Kate concludes that; “Ultimately I want to help shape a fair, safe internet for everyone, particularly those with a chronic health condition.”
Representing 19 countries on five continents, the 25 Under 25 awardees’ initiatives include; creating an anti-cyberbullying youth movement in Australia, providing e-health education to teens in Tanzania, and using ICTs to break the cycle of poverty for families in Costa Rica.
While their individual accomplishments are noteworthy in their own right, together the 25 awardees highlight how today’s youth are helping to shape the future. As Kathryn Brown, Internet Society President and CEO, notes, “their efforts have a tremendous impact, creating new ways of socializing, mobilizing and organizing in a digital world. By recognizing these individuals, we aim to inspire other young people around the world to become actors of change and use the Internet for social good.”
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