Rafiq Copeland is a Project Director and Humanitarian Advisor for Internews, currently based in Myanmar. Rafiq oversees diverse projects, particularly working with media and civil society on issues relating to religious and ethnic diversity in Myanmar and Sri Lanka. For the last ten years Rafiq has worked to increase access to information and communication channels for local and marginalized communities in a wide range of contexts, including in Kenya, Somalia, the Philippines, Cambodia, Bangladesh and South Sudan.
Rafiq’s recent work has seen a focus on dangerous speech, including hate speech and incitements to violence online. Working closely with civil society groups in Myanmar and other countries affected by manipulation of social media, Rafiq has been exploring how to measure the performance of digital platforms in meeting their own standards for content moderation, and working towards greater accountability for platform users in so called ‘emerging markets’. As a frontline humanitarian responder, Rafiq coordinates with humanitarian actors and local media to ensure affected populations have the information they need to make good choices. Through increased communication and transparency, Rafiq has worked to increase accountability to affected populations in humanitarian emergencies.