Zino Haro on Navigating Data Governance through the Lens of Fashion and Innovation


Datasphere Initiative


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In the context of the #Youth4OurDataFuture project, the Datasphere Initiative spoke to a diverse group of young leaders about the role of young people in shaping how data and digital technologies are governed. Through a series of interviews, 19 young people from all over the world shared their insights on what an equitable data future looks like. 

All participants were asked about how they would like to get involved in data governance discussions, make an impact, and how their ideas could reach centers of power and decision-makers. In addition to answering these questions, each participant selected two topics to discuss in depth.

Zino Haro, American, 26 years old, shared a different approach to data governance, her thoughts on AI, and her experiences on education and data for SDGs.

Read more about the campaign and other contributions here.

How would you like to get involved in data governance discussions and make an impact? How could your ideas reach centers of power and decision-makers?

I would like to do things that engage people who don’t normally think about data governance. The current paths seem like a bit of an echo chamber sometimes, with some progress made through awareness and sharing information. Beyond that, it’s very hard to make those who already know and don’t care, care. I have a background in the fashion and music worlds. Fashion – in particular high fashion – is unique because it is one of the few industries that tells customers what they should want rather than react to what customers already want. I think this could be an interesting approach for data governance: embody the radicality of fashion and arts without letting the audience know what it wants until it’s already all over society.

What are your recommendations for policy-makers in creating a fair and inclusive digital future?

This might be controversial, but I think we need to strongly restrict innovation in some industries, specifically AI. This is a lose-lose situation because some countries will definitely not comply with this, leaving the ones that do at a disadvantage as far as innovation and markets are concerned. However, I have a strong impression that the current pace of advancements will be detrimental to human rights. The foundation we have laid out is not conducive to fairness nor inclusivity. I really can’t pretend that I know how to approach this. I’m a cynical optimist, however.


What kind of data or tech skills did you learn or are learning in school? Would you like to learn more?

I formally studied computer science, focusing on digital systems and cyber security. I learned programming, but also threats and risks. I also consistently did research on the weaponization of emerging technologies and on privacy-preserving technologies.

I would like to learn more and am constantly learning more by myself. I do this through research, constantly reading new publications, and attending conferences.

Data for the SDGs:

Are you aware of any existing initiatives to leverage the power of data to advance one or more Sustainable Development Goals (e.g., education, health, gender equality)?

Youth for Privacy, an organization that I co-founded. However, we focus more on data protection and awareness rather than applied data use.

Zino Haro is an American tech entrepreneur, fashion designer, and cybersecurity researcher. Haro is the co-founder and head of cybersecurity research/representation at Youth for Privacy, a non-profit organization in the realm of international cybersecurity and risk policy. Haro is also the co-founder of the fashion supply chain tech company Uni-ke, for which she was recognized as a 30 Under 30 Hispanic Executive in 2021.

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