Thesis (Selection of subject)Thesis (Selection of subject)(version: 356)
Assignment details
   Login via CAS
Inside the Dictator’s Panopticon: Unveiling Digital Authoritarianism in Belarus
Thesis title in Czech: Uvnitř diktátorského panoptika: Odhalení digitálního autoritářství v Bělorusku
Thesis title in English: Inside the Dictator’s Panopticon: Unveiling Digital Authoritarianism in Belarus
English key words: digital authoritarianism, repression, Belarus, surveillance, censorship, cyberspace, Lukashenka, self-censorship, digitization
Academic year of topic announcement: 2021/2022
Type of assignment: diploma thesis
Thesis language: angličtina
Department: Department of Security Studies (23-KBS)
Supervisor: Mgr. Anzhelika Solovyeva, Ph.D.
Author: hidden - assigned by the advisor
Date of registration: 30.09.2022
Date of assignment: 11.10.2022
Date and time of defence: 20.09.2023 07:00
Venue of defence: Jinonice - U Kříže 8, Praha 5
Date of electronic submission:31.07.2023
Date of proceeded defence: 20.09.2023
Reviewers: prof. PhDr. RNDr. Nikola Hynek, Ph.D., M.A.
Preliminary scope of work in English
The following research presents the first-ever empirical case study of digital authoritarianism in Belarus. While Belarusian propaganda has created an atmosphere of omnipresent surveillance with citizens always feeling watched, there is pervasive secrecy surrounding existing surveillance practices and their functioning. The following research aims to unravel the techniques of digital repression employed by the Belarusian government, as well as to evaluate them in line with the conceptual framework of the usage of digital technologies to the strategic ends of authoritarian regimes and the transformational political effects of such new technologies. In addition to establishing distinct features of Belarusian digital authoritarianism, the research also determines the extent to which Belarusian authoritarianism is digital as well as the role of private actors. Given the lack of academic literature relating to the specific case study, interviews with experts in the field were carried out and consequently utilized in the qualitative analysis along with secondary data. The findings suggest Lukashenka's government effectively utilizes digital repression to control and repress the Belarusian population. The regime's implementation of digital surveillance and censorship intertwines with traditional repression, creating a hybrid strategy of oppression that induces widespread self-censorship among citizens. The government's adaptability to digital tools demonstrates its capability to transform digital innovations into tools of oppression and maintain high-intensity repression, affecting a wide range of citizens and not just opposition figures and leading to a state of paralysis in social and political participation that benefits the regime’s stability.
Charles University | Information system of Charles University |