Transnational Advocacy in the Digital Era

A book talk with author Nina Hall


Join SNF Agora for a conversation with Nina Hall, author of Transnational Advocacy in the Digital Era, Think Global, Act Local.

Transnational Advocacy in the Digital Era explores the role of digital advocacy organizations, a major new addition to the international arena. Organizations such as MoveOn, GetUp and Campact derive power and influence from their ability to rapidly mobilize members on-line and off-line and are shaping public opinion on many issues, including climate change, trade, and refugees. Research in international relations (IR) has highlighted the influence of non-governmental organizations, which wield power through their expertise and long-term, moral commitment to an issue. However, no IR scholars have explored the spread and power of digital advocacy organizations. Nina Hall provides a detailed investigation of how these organizations have harnessed digitally networked power. They can rapidly respond to the most salient issues of the day, and mobilize large memberships, to put pressure on politicians. She finds that these organizations operate in a globalized world but tackle transnational problems by focusing on national targets. This new generation of activists have formed a strong transnational network, but still see the state as the locus of power.

Hall will be joined in conversation by SNF Agora associate researcher Milan de Vries.



Nina Hall is an assistant professor of international relations at Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). Her research explores the role of transnational advocacy and international organizations in international relations.  Her most recent book, Transnational Advocacy in the Digital Era, will be published with Oxford University Press in 2022. She has previously published in the International Studies Quarterly, European Journal of International Relations, Global Environmental Politics, and Global Governance. Her first book was Displacement, Development and Climate Change: International Organizations Moving Beyond their Mandates? (Routledge, 2016). She previously worked as a lecturer at the Hertie School of Governance and has a DPhil (PhD) in international relations from the University of Oxford. She is the co-founder of an independent, progressive think tank, New Zealand Alternative. In 2021 she was a senior fellow at the Weizenbaum Institute (the German Internet Institute) in Berlin. She is currently a faculty affiliate at the SNF Agora Institute at Johns Hopkins University, and a research associate at the Centre for Strategic Studies, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand.

Headshot of Milan de VriesMilan de Vries is an associate research scholar at the SNF Agora Institute and former director of analytics at, where he revolutionized the use of data to advance grassroots organizing and influence civic behavior. De Vries holds a PhD in biology from MIT, where he witnessed the bioinformatics revolution and developed skills to transfer those insights to civic data.