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Bipartisan Ethos

Dear Republican and Democrat university groups, 


On behalf of Nonviolence International NY and ÆFocus, we invite you to participate in an experimental political contest that we hope will expose the potential for bridging polarization within our country’s political realm.


For the sake of this project, we ask that college Republicans and Democrats join forces to come up with a policy memo on the issue of cyber surveillance and national security, in particular focusing on Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act. The policy memo will then be reviewed by a special committee here at Nonviolence NY, after which the selected papers will be submitted to a panel of experts, who will select the three winning finalists.


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What is the purpose?

  1. To demonstrate the potential for achieving common ground within the polarized American political system

  2. Provide an outlet for political discussion among the youth  

Why you should get involved?

  • To submit your resume to our panel of expert for future job and internship consideration

  • For a chance to win a monetary prize ranging from $400 to $1000

  • To use this opportunity to network with a large number of organizations working together with Nonviolence International

  • To demonstrate your support for political collaboration

  • If determined to be the winner, receive publicity on Nonviolence International's website other prominent social media outlets and news sources

What is Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Act?

Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Act, passed by Congress in 2008, allows the United States government to obtain intelligence, by targeting foreigners outside of the United States. Section 702 expressly states that American citizens and prominent residents are not to be pursued. However, while Section 702 overtly claims that it does not permit the United States government to target American citizens and permanent residents on American soil or even outside of the United States, it does permit the government to intercept any flow of information coming into the country from a foreign entity. The premise of Section 702, prompted debates in several disciplines such as national security as well as well as legal, ethical and moral in scope. While some believe Section 702 to be in violation of constitutional rights, others view Section 702 as an integral part of national security.


In 2017 Section 702 is to be reauthorized. While working with opposing political affiliates, write a policy memo, 3 to 5 pages in length, either advising to reauthorize Section 702 as is or suggest amendments to be made. In the policy memo, be sure to be clear and concise, and supplement your position with exposition, analysis and any relevant facts and figures that will strengthen your position.




Sue Udry has served as Executive Director at Defending Rights and Dissent for ten years. Prior to coming to DRAD, she was the legislative coordinator for United for Peace and Justice, a coalition of over 1,600 groups opposing the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. She currently serves on the board of the National Coalition to Protect Student Privacy, and the DC chapter of the National Lawyers Guild, as well as the Advisory Board of the Charity and Security Network. She is a co-founder of the Montgomery County Civil Rights Coalition. Over a quarter of a century working for peace and social justice has taught Sue that fulfilling the promise of the Bill of Rights and protecting our right to dissent is crucial to expanding democracy, promoting justice, and enlarging the global human rights perspective."

The Defending Rights and dissent.

James Andrew Lewis is a Senior Vice President at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS). His expertise includes fields such as technology, U.S. foreign policy, intelligence and strategy. James Lewis was the rapporteur for the UN Group of Government Experts on Information Security for the successful 2010, 2013, and 2015 sessions. He has led long-running Track 1.5 discussions on cybersecurity with the China Institutes of Contemporary International Relations. Mr. Lewis served on several Federal Advisory Committees over the Cours of his professional career. He was also the director for CSIS’s Commission on Cybersecurity for the 44th Presidency and is an internationally recognized expert on cybersecurity who is frequently quoted in the media.

Senior Vice President at the Center of Strategic an International Studies

James F. Lilly, Esq. received his Master of Laws from Georgetown University with a focus on National Security Law. Previously, he earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of Baltimore with a concentration in International and Comparative Law. Currently, he works as a Cyber Security Policy Analyst at MindPoint Group LLC. He works together with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) to ensure the proper implementation of Federal cybersecurity regulations and policy. He coordinates with the Office of Privacy and Civil Liberties to ensure proper drafting and execution of privacy requirements within the OCIO. James Lilly, briefs top DOJ officials on enterprise-wide cybersecurity and privacy posture, documents, policies, and recommendations. Previously, he worked as a Strategy Consultant with NATO.


Cyber Security Policyanalyst at MindPoint Group LLC

Gwilym was called to the Bar of England and Wales in 2008 and has since been practicing as a criminal barrister. Gwilym joined NVI in the Spring of 2016 whilst on a year-long sabbatical to undertake research and to advocate for international human rights. This is an interest Gwilym has pursued since working at the European Parliament in Strasbourg.


At NVI, Gwilym writes research papers and speeches in preparation for United Nations forums and conferences. Gwilym is also responsible for organizing the activities of NVI's large intern team.  Gwilym's main areas of focus are Disarmament and the progress of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Legal Professional -Nonviolence Violence International-NY

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Sue Udry
James Andrew Lewis
James F. Lilly, Esq.
Gwilym Roberts-Hary

What is the process?

  •  Students will come together to write a policy memo proposing a bipartisan approach to the    issue of cyber surveillance and national security regarding Section 702 

  • The policy memo will range from 3-5 pages in length

  • Upon receiving the papers, the review committee at Nonviolence International-NY will select the final five candidates

  • The final papers will be submitted to the expert panel

  • Each expert will rank policy memos on a 15 point scale

    • Evaluations will be based on: 

    • Clarity, cohesion/organization, analysis, evidence, level of collaboration

  • Policy memo with the most points awarded will be the winner


Project Manager:  Lydmila Aleksandrova 

Sponsored by NonviolenceNY and the ÆFocusNetwork 

Project date: Fall of 2017

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