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Technical Research Manager at Stanford Internet Observatory

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Renee DiResta Bio

Renée DiResta is the technical research manager at Stanford Internet Observatory, a cross-disciplinary program of research, teaching and policy engagement for the study of abuse in current information technologies. DiResta investigates the spread of malign narratives across social networks, and assists policymakers in devising responses to the problem. She has studied influence operations and computational propaganda in the context of pseudoscience conspiracies, terrorist activity, and state-sponsored information warfare, and has advised Congress, the State Department, and other academic, civil society, and business organizations on the topic. At the behest of SSCI, she led one of the two research teams that produced comprehensive assessments of the Internet Research Agency’s and GRU’s influence operations targeting the U.S. from 2014-2018.Previously, DiResta was the Director of Research at New Knowledge. She was part of the founding team and ran marketing and business development at Haven, the transportation management technology platform that’s transforming trade logistics for commodity, CPG, and food shippers. Before that, DiResta was a Principal at seed-stage venture capital fund O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures (OATV), where she invested in early technology startups with a focus on hardware, manufacturing, and logistics companies. She spent seven years on Wall Street as an equity derivatives trader and market maker at Jane Street, a top quantitative proprietary trading firm in New York City.DiResta regularly writes and speaks about the role that tech platforms and curatorial algorithms play in the proliferation of disinformation and conspiracy theories. She is an Ideas contributor at Wired. Her tech industry writing, analysis, talks, and data visualizations have been featured or covered by numerous media outlets including the New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, CNBC, Bloomberg, Yale Review, Fast Company, Politico, TechCrunch, Wired, Slate, Forbes, Buzzfeed, The Economist, Journal of Commerce, and more. She is a 2017 Presidential Leadership Scholar, a 2019 Truman National Security Project security fellow, and a Council on Foreign Relations term member.DiResta is the author of “The Hardware Startup: Building your Product, Business, and Brand,” published by O’Reilly Media.In 2020, DiResta appeared in the Netflix documentary “The Social Dilemma”, which explores the rise of social media and the damage it has caused to society.DiResta has degrees in Computer Science and Political Science from the Honors College at SUNY Stony Brook. She is a 2017 Presidential Leadership Scholar, a Council on Foreign Relations term member, and a Truman National Security Fellow. She is a Staff Associate at the Columbia University Data Science Institute, a Harvard Berkman-Klein Center affiliate, and is a Founding Advisor to the Center for Humane Technology. She is passionate about STEM education and childhood immunization advocacy, and is one of the co-founders of parent advocacy organization Vaccinate California. For fun, she explores data sets and loves cooking and making things. Renée and her husband, Justin Hileman, are the parents of two feisty little people.Contact a speaker booking agent to check availability on Renee DiResta and other top speakers and celebrities.

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