Access to Information as a Human Right

20 Pages Posted: 8 Sep 2008  

Kay Mathiesen

University of Arizona; School of Information

Date Written: September 7, 2008

Abstract

Information rights include rights to create and communicate information (e.g., freedom of expression, freedom of association), to control others' access to information (e.g., privacy and intellectual property), and rights to access information (e.g., freedom of thought, the right to read). This paper focuses on those rights related to free access to information and argues that access to information is indeed a fundamental human right. It is further argued that the right to access is not merely a liberty right, but also a welfare right. That is, individuals' information rights place duties on governments to provide access to information.

Keywords: human rights, information ethics, access to information, information rights

Suggested Citation

Mathiesen, Kay, Access to Information as a Human Right (September 7, 2008). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1264666 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1264666

Kay Mathiesen (Contact Author)

University of Arizona ( email )

Tucson, AZ 85721
United States

School of Information ( email )

Harvil Building
1103 East 2nd Street
Tucson, AZ 85721
United States

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