How 21st Century Tools Are Disrupting Global Power
It has become an article of faith that the United States and Europe are declining powers, that power is transferring from West to East, and from North to South. In truth, the far more powerful and important dynamic is the impact that technology and social media are playing devolving power from governments and large institutions to individuals and small institutions. This talk comes from the perspective of the apex of traditional power structure, as a witness to the truth of the wildly changing nature of power around the world.
Alec Ross serves as Senior Advisor for Innovation to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, where he is tasked with maximizing the potential of technology and innovation in service of America’s diplomatic goals and stewarding Secretary of State Clinton’s 21st Century Statecraft agenda. In this role, Alec helps ensure America’s leadership and advances the State Department’s interests on a range of issues from Internet Freedom to disaster response to responding to regional conflicts.
Previously, Alec served as the Convener for Obama for America's Technology, Media & Telecommunications Policy Committee and served on the Obama-Biden Presidential Transition Team.
In 2000, he and three colleagues co-founded the nonprofit organization One Economy and grew it from modest origins in a basement into the world's largest digital divide organization, with programs on four continents.
He was named the 2010 Middle East/North Africa Technology Person of the Year, cited by the Huffington Post as one of “10 Game Changers in Politics,” named a “game changer” as one of Politico’s “50 Politicos to watch” in 2010, and named one of 40 under 40 leaders in international development. In 2011, he was named one of the “Top 100 Global Thinkers” by Foreign Policy Magazine.
Alec has served as a guest lecturer at numerous institutions including the United Nations, Harvard Law School, Stanford Business School, the London School of Economics, and a number of parliamentary bodies. His writing has appeared in publications including the SAIS Review of International Affairs, the NATO Review and the Hague Journal of Diplomacy.
Alec started his career as a sixth grade teacher through Teach for America in inner-city Baltimore where he lives with his wife and their three young children.