Biography

Dr Johnny Ryan FRHistS is a Senior Fellow at the Irish Council for Civil Liberties, and a Senior Fellow at the Open Markets Institute in the United States. He works on policy, regulation, data, privacy, innovation, design, and tech.

Previously, he was Chief Policy & Industry Relations Officer at Brave, the private web browser. At Brave, Dr Ryan led a campaign for GDPR enforcement across the EU, and liaised with global government and industry leaders. His regulatory interventions have made the front page of The Financial Times, and his expert commentary on the data and privacy regularly appears in media such as The New York TimesThe Economist, WiredLe Monde, and others. Protocol published a profile about some of his work.

Like many Brave employees, he suffers from a syndrome called “adtech remorse”. Before Brave, Dr. Ryan worked in adtech, media, and policy. His previous roles included Chief Innovation Officer of The Irish Times and Senior Researcher at the Institute of International & European Affairs (IIEA).

Dr Ryan is a regular speaker at high level industry fora, and has testified at the United States Senate and the European Commission.

As an O’Reilly Foundation PhD scholar at the University of Cambridge he studied the spread of militant memes. Dr Ryan is the author of two books (link: “A History of the Internet and the Digital Future”). His first book, based on his work at the IIEA, was the most cited source in the European Commission’s impact assessment that decided against pursuing Web censorship across the EU.

He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, and a member of the World Economic Forum’s expert network on media, entertainment and information.

He started his career in design, and returned to design thinking later as Executive Director of The Innovation Academy at University College Dublin. He was an associate on the emerging digital environment at the Judge Business School of the University of Cambridge.

Selected press mentions

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Press photographs