WHO WE ARE

Over Zero was founded in response to the global need to counteract and prevent identity-based violence and other forms of group-targeted harm.

We emerged as an outgrowth of Sisi ni Amani International, an organization founded to strengthen local violence prevention efforts through leveraging communication-based tools. Over Zero builds on this work to address a broader geographic and existential mandate: to harness the power of communication to prevent, resist, and rise above identity-based violence and other forms of group-targeted harm.

As a translator, curator, and connector, we work with community leaders, civil society organizations, and researchers to develop and implement practical tools and launch effective interventions. Our interdisciplinary and cross-sector approach contribute to the broader field of identity-based violence prevention. 

Our team brings a wide set of skills, experiences, and perspectives to our work, from grassroots peacebuilding to behavioral science.


Learn more about our backstory:

Read about the work Sisi ni Amani International supported and seeded, hear a talk, or watch the movie!

Over Zero also builds on Defusing Hate: A Strategic Communication Guide to Counteract Dangerous Speech, authored by Over Zero’s Founder and Executive Director during her time at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide. Read Defusing Hate here.

 
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Vision

A world free from identity-based violence and other forms of group-targeted harm.


Mission

Over Zero partners with community leaders, civil society, and researchers to harness the power of communication to prevent, resist and rise above identity-based violence and other forms of group-targeted harm.

 

Our Values

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Over Zero believes that it must embody the following values to be a positive contributor to society.

Co-creation

We embrace the diverse expertise, experiences, and perspectives of the individuals and organizations with whom we partner.

Discovery

We are a learning organization. We aspire to take bold risks in the service of learning and achieving impact.

Do No Harm

We operate under the core principle of ‘do no harm,’ meaning that we prioritize avoiding harm in all of its potential forms.

Impact

In the service of driving true change, we remain critical and objective when evaluating the impact of our interventions.

Wholeness

In all of our interactions, both internal and external, we are determined to embody a culture of respect, kindness, and an openness to one another’s whole selves.

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Meet Our Team

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Rachel Brown
Founder and executive director

For the past decade years, Rachel's work has focused on using communication to prevent violent conflict. She is the author of Defusing Hate: A Strategic Communication Guide to Counteract Dangerous Speech and was a 2014 Genocide Prevention Fellow at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Simon-Skjodt Center for the Prevention of Genocide. Rachel founded and ran Sisi ni Amani-Kenya (SNA-K), a Kenyan NGO that pioneered new strategies to build local capacity for peacebuilding and civic engagement

Dr. nichole argo ben-itzhak
director of research and field advancement

Nichole is an academic researcher, whose work on intergroup dynamics and conflict has been published in leading journals. She is interdisciplinary by nature, with an MA in International Policy Studies (Stanford University), an MS in Political Science (MIT), and a PhD in Social Psychology (New School for Social research). She has consulted with governments, media groups, and policy think tanks to bring academic work on intergroup relations, violence, and extremism into practice.

LAURA LIVINGSTON
programs MANAGER

Laura’s background is in the relationship between governance, conflict, and peacebuilding. A lawyer by training, she has worked on transitional justice initiatives around the world, including in the Balkans, East Africa, and the MENA region. Laura received her J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center.

Samantha Owens
trainer

Samantha has extensive experience leveraging strategic communication for social change. Her experience includes developing trainings and strategic communication campaigns to prevent extremism among youth in Bosnia, art-based initiatives for conflict transformation and human rights, and communication campaigns to prevent youth homelessness in the U.S. She holds an MA in Human Rights.