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7th International Conference – Freedom of Expression in Asia

24 August 2022 - 26 August 2022


This conference will assess the state of freedom of expression in Asia in the aftermath of the onslaught of the COVID-19 pandemic. On the back of rising autocracy, academic, press and internet freedoms have been severely affected. National governments, in trying to deal with the pandemic, securitised health responses and introduced fake news legislation or enacted emergency laws to manage information flow. However, those criticising the responses to the mismanagement of dealing with COVID-19 infections and the roll out of national vaccination programmes, were silenced using these laws. Given the democratic backsliding in the region, national responses were politicised and used to silence activists, critics, and human rights defenders. The COVID-19 pandemic also spurred a new wave of xenophobia in which vulnerable communities found themselves on the receiving end of hate speech based on fake news. In the context of geopolitics and as part of vaccine nationalism, countries engaged in information operations to showcase their technological prowess by being among the first to develop the vaccine and bolster their public diplomacy when sharing the vaccines with less fortunate countries. As countries recover from the lost years of the international health crisis, it is critical to evaluate and understand the impact of freedom of expression, in particular academic, press and internet freedoms. This interdisciplinary and policy-oriented conference seeks to analyse these impacts and to explore practical solutions that can contribute to freedom of expression so that  post-pandemic societal recovery can be placed on a strong democratic footing.


The key issues that will be examined are as followed:

  • Freedom of expression: academic, press and internet freedoms
  • Role of media, social media and technology and fundamental freedoms
  • Fake news, disinformation and hate speech; 
  • Surveillance and privacy; 
  • Digital and media literacy; 
  • Technology companies, business and human rights
  • Impacts on democracy, fundamental freedoms and SDGs
  • Any other relevant or related themes


The conference aims to achieve the following objectives:

  • Convene individuals and organisations researching on freedom of expression
  • Examine in particular academic, press and internet freedoms 
  • Evaluate the overall impact on democracy and human rights in Asia

Conference Structure

The conference will consist of short remarks, keynote speeches and plenary and breakout sessions made of thematic panels and region/country-specific discussions.

Conference Participants

Registration is open to all presenters and participants from academic institutions, businesses, national and regional civil society organisations, international NGOs, political parties, parliaments, government agencies and intergovernmental organisations to facilitate knowledge sharing and networking.

Conference Publications

Following the international conference, Asia Centre will undertake the following publishing efforts:

  • Conference Proceedings

Publish a set of peer-reviewed Conference Proceedings. Guidelines for the conference proceedings can be found here

  • Book Project

Asia Centre will invite selected authors and presenters (10-12) to participate in a book proposal to Palgrave Macmillan (International Edition). See Guidelines for book project here.

Style sheet guidelines for the Conference Proceedings and Book Project can be found here.

Programme Outline

  • 24 August 2022
    • 18:30-20:00 | Welcome Reception and Evening Panel
  • 25 August 2022
    • 9:30-17:00 | Morning & Afternoon Panels
  • 26 August 2022
    • 9:30-17:00 | Morning & Afternoon Panels

    Conference Fee

    This is a self-funded conference, hence a flat, base fee of USD$300 will be charged to all keynote paper and poster presenters, participants and drop-in visitors. This will go towards covering the cost of the venue, equipment and logistics, coffee breaks on all days, certificates for participants, conference communications and staff.

    Submission Guidelines

    • Paper Presentations and Speeches

    Researchers and practitioners wishing to present papers or share their experiences are invited to submit a title and abstract of 300-340 words in English, together with a biographical paragraph of 100 words, here. For those submitting papers, full papers should be 5000 words.

    Key Dates

    Accepting abstracts now (on a rolling basis until 7 July 2022)

    Payment due following acceptance of abstract (within 2 weeks of submission)

    Full papers (deadline 30 July 2022)

    Conference Partnerships

    Asia Centre welcomes organisations and individuals to be conference partners and sponsors by co-convening the event, panels, keynote speakers and participants. This will provide partners an opportunity to network and forge linkages with academia, businesses, civil society, governments and international organisations in the region and beyond; and can promote their organisation and activities.

    Partner Benefits

    Logo on all publicity materials online and at the conference venue.

    Social media and mailing list promotion through Asia Centre’s networks.

    Display and distribute promotional materials from partner organisations to the participants.

    Develop expertise on the issues covered by the conference themes.

    Partner Requirements

    Purchase minimum 4 tickets (USD 300 x 4 = USD1,200).

    Market the conference within their networks.

    Partners can also buy additional conference tickets.

    Additional Options

    Sponsor participants by buying conference tickets.

    Sponsor a keynote speaker by providing a financial grant to the conference.

    Provide corporate sponsorship (in-kind and/or financial grants) and be featured on promotional materials.

    Convener: Asia Centre

    Asia Centre, 128/183 Phayathai Plaza Building (17th Floor), Phayathai Road, 

    Ratchathewi Bangkok 10400 Thailand.

    Enquiries and Registration

    Enquiries: contact@asiacentre.org

    Register Here

    Pay your conference fees online

    Conference Fee_Freedom of Expression in Asia

    *Please be aware that all conference fees are not refundable.
    **All costs regarding the transfer of the conference fees (Transfer fees) are to be covered by the applicant.


24 August 2022
26 August 2022
Event Categories:


Asia Centre
View Organizer Website