Esra’a Al Shafei, Founder, Majal.org

Esra’a Al Shafei is a Bahraini human rights activist, an outspoken defender of free speech, and founder of Majal.org, an organization that develops platforms that amplify underrepresented voices. Together with her team, they build web products that creatively facilitate the struggle for social justice in the region, including platforms such as: CrowdVoice.org, an open source tool that curates and contextualizes data on social movements, Mideast Tunes, the largest platform for regional underground musicians who use music as a tool for advocacy, and Ahwaa.org, a bilingual tool for LGBTQ youth in the Middle East that leverages game mechanics to facilitate high-quality interactions. She is the recipient of the “Berkman Award” from the Berkman Center for Internet and Society at Harvard Law School for “outstanding contributions to the internet and its impact on society over the last decade”, the Monaco Media Prize, which acknowledges innovative uses of media for the betterment of humanity, and the “Most Courageous Media” award from Free Press Unlimited, as well as “30 under 30” (Forbes) and 15 women changing the world in 2015 (World Economic Forum).

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