Oslo Freedom Forum: Challenging Power

The fifth anniversary conference was dedicated to the growing might of the OFF community, whose members have shown, time and again, that by standing up for liberty and inspiring action, individuals can confront and prevail over arbitrary power.

The summit featured leaders and innovators from academia, advocacy, media, politics, social entrepreneurship, technology, and the arts who are challenging the most repressive regimes and exchanging ideas on how best to tackle humanitarian crises.

The 2013 program centered on a range of topics—the art of dissent, asymmetric activism, new tools for rights advocates, the power of media, women under Islamic law, and the threat of authoritarian capitalism.

For the first time, the Oslo Freedom Forum held break-out workshops for participants. The workshops covered best practices for protecting data and using technology to maximize the impact of advocacy efforts.

Speakers represented a diverse group of countries, including: Afghanistan, Angola, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Belarus, Cameroon, China, Cuba, DR-Congo, Egypt, Iran, Malaysia, North Korea, Palestine, Peru, Russia, Singapore, Syria, and Zimbabwe.

The conference culminated on the afternoon of May 15, with the presentation of the second Václav Havel Prize for Creative Dissent. The 2013 laureates were Syrian cartoonist Ali Ferzat, North Korean democracy activist Park Sang Hak, and Cuban civil society group the Ladies in White—represented by their leader Berta Soler.

  • Ali AbdulemamBreaking Free from Bahrain's Regime
    Ali Abdulemam
  • Shakeela AbrahimkhilTransforming Media, Transforming Women
    Shakeela Abrahimkhil
  • Soraya BahgatThe Voice of Women is a Revolution
    Soraya Bahgat
  • Arzina BegumAbolishing Child Marriage
    Arzina Begum
  • Julio BorgesThe Democratic Rebellion
    Julio Borges
  • Donald BoudreauxThe Case for Economic Freedom
    Donald Boudreaux
  • Bill BrowderAvenging Magnitsky's Murder
    Bill Browder
  • Mads Brügger Rule of Law for Sale
    Mads Brügger
  • Chee Soon JuanEconomic Sustainability in Authoritarian Systems
    Chee Soon Juan
  • Chen GuangchengChina's Inevitable Transformation
    Chen Guangcheng
  • Lee Ann De ReusA Different Kind of Warfare
    Lee Ann De Reus
  • Espen Barth Eide
    Espen Barth Eide
  • Meron EstefanosNo Escape from Eritrea
    Meron Estefanos
  • Ali Ferzat The Strength of Satire
    Ali Ferzat
  • Asmaa Al-GhoulExposing Hamas's Rule
    Asmaa Al-Ghoul
  • Peter GodwinMugabe's Reign of Terror
    Peter Godwin
  • Roberto de Jesús Guerra Pérez Reporting from an Island Prison
    Roberto de Jesús Guerra Pérez
  • Luke HardingPutin's Mafia State
    Luke Harding
  • Afua HirschMali's Islamist Takeover
    Afua Hirsch
  • Natalia KaliadaTheatre of Resistance
    Natalia Kaliada
  • James KirchickDevil's Advocates
    James Kirchick
  • Justin KosslynMapping Human Trafficking
    Justin Kosslyn
  • Lapiro De MbangaSinging Truth to Power
    Lapiro De Mbanga
  • Rafael Marques De MoraisThe Africa-China Union
    Rafael Marques De Morais
  • Owen MasekoPainting a Massacre
    Owen Maseko
  • Jenan MoussaSyria's Uncovered Story
    Jenan Moussa
  • Srdja PopovicRevolution 101
    Srdja Popovic
  • Lobsang SangayDemocracy in Exile
    Lobsang Sangay
  • Stephanie SinclairToo Young to Wed
    Stephanie Sinclair
  • Hannah SongNorth Korea's Rising Civil Society
    Hannah Song
  • Ambiga SreenevasanUnrigging an Election
    Ambiga Sreenevasan
  • Philippa ThomasWomen Under Threat
    Philippa Thomas
  • Mario Vargas LlosaLiterature, Freedom, and Power
    Mario Vargas Llosa
  • Sasa VucinicInvesting in Free Press
    Sasa Vucinic
  • Maryam Nayeb YazdiIran's Weapon of Choice
    Maryam Nayeb Yazdi