Benedicte Berner lectures at Harvard University on media, democracy, and economics and is vice-chair of Civil Rights Defenders (CRD), the major Swedish NGO for human rights with a focus on freedom of expression, rule of law, and non-discrimination. She led media monitoring missions for the European Commission during the post-war elections in the Balkans and in transitional countries of the former Soviet Union, and has trained journalists on media and election and media and ethics in the Middle East and North Africa. She has also taught at the School of Journalism of lí Institut dí Etudes Politiques in Paris, where she earned her masterís degree in political science.
Benedicte lived for five years in the Soviet Union/Russia (1989-94). The question of how to effectively support development of independent media in Russia, in the new republics of the former USSR, and in the Balkans has been a major focus in her work. In 1997, she helped establish the Gerd Bucerius Award for Professional Journalism in Eastern and Central Europe, one of the most important prizes for journalists working under censorship or in difficult conditions in these regions.
Benedicte has written for the European Institute for the Media; for the Lebanese Association for the Democracy of Elections; for French magazines such as Politique Internationale, on media in Russia, and Droit de Regard, on terrorism and media in Russia; for Nyheter Dagens (major Swedish daily) on the human rights situation in Chechnya; and for the University of Paris-Sorbonne on Putin and the media.