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OpenNet Initiative: state-sponsored filtering of the Internet

OpenNet Initiative: state-sponsored filtering of the Internet

Project Contents


The OpenNet Initiative is a collaborative partnership of three institutions: the Citizen Lab at the Munk School of Global Affairs, University of Toronto; the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University; and the SecDev Group (Ottawa).

Our aim is to investigate, expose and analyze Internet filtering and surveillance practices in a credible and non-partisan fashion. We intend to uncover the potential pitfalls and unintended consequences of these practices, and thus help to inform better public policy and advocacy work in this area. To achieve these aims, the ONI employs a unique multi-disciplinary approach that includes:

  1. Development and deployment of a suite of technical enumeration tools and core methodologies for the study of Internet filtering and surveillance;
  2. Capacity-building among networks of local advocates and researchers;
  3. Advanced studies exploring the consequences of current and future trends and trajectories in filtering and surveillance practices, and their implications for domestic and international law and governance regimes.

Berkman Centre for Internet & Society

Key Information

  • Berkman Centre for Internet & Society
  • MacArthur Foundation
  • University of Cambridge
  • University of Toronto
  • Project dates:
    January 2006 - September 2008