Event Highlight

2018 Global Digital Futures Policy Forum: State of the Field Workshop on the Digital Transformation

Posted Jun 15 2018

Over the last three years, Columbia SIPA’s Digital Futures Policy Forum has been a long-term intellectual initiative to reimagine our digital future, focus on the potential benefits and costs arising from global digital technology changes and look ahead to emerging challenges and possible policy responses.

In 2018, the State of the Field Workshop on the Digital Transformation built upon the agenda with the fourth annual gathering. The workshops focused on engaging participation across the multi-sectors leaders and participants while discussing the state of academic and policy research, as well as identifying critical policy concerns for future research or collaboration. The event had seven panels focusing on a range of important policy issues of our digital age – notably platforms and governance; international trade; antitrust and the platform economy; internet of things and governance; as well as policy issues related to digital private moneys, digital identities and elections and online advertising.

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  • Speakers include:

    • Usman Ahmed (PayPal)
    • Vipin Bharathan (dlt.nyc)
    • Mira Burri (University of Lucerne)
    • David Carroll (The New School)
    • Augustin Chaintreau (Columbia)
    • Laura DeNardis (American University)
    • William Drake (University of Zurich)
    • Martha Finnemore (George Washington)
    • Camille François (Graphika)
    • Tarleton Gillespie (Microsoft)
    • Gordon Goldstein (Silver Lake Partners)
    • Scott Hemphill (NYU)
    • Merit Janow (Columbia SIPA)
    • Gene Kimmelman (Public Knowledge)
    • Kate Klonick (St. John’s University Law School)
    • Karen Kornbluh (CFR)
    • Ronaldo Lemos (ITS Rio)
    • Veni Markovski (ICANN)
    • Richardo Meléndez-Ortiz (International Center for Trade and Sustainable Development)
    • Joshua Meltzer (Brookings Institute)
    • Young Mie Kim (University of Wisconsin-Madison)
    • Helen Nissenbaum (Cornell Tech)
    • Eli Noam (Columbia Business School)
    • Karen Ottoni (Linux Foundation)
    • David Pitofsky (NewsCorp)
    • Max Raskin (NYU)
    • Mark Raymond (University of Oklahoma)
    • Ann Ravel (Berkeley)
    • Elizabeth Renieris (Evernym)
    • Gilad Rosner (Internet of Things Privacy Forum)
    • Bret Scafer (Alliance for Security Democracy)
    • George Selgin (CATO Institute)
    • Howard Shelanski (Georgetown Law)
    • Stefaan Verhulst (The GovLab)
    • Patrick Waelbroeck (Télécom ParisTech)
    • Jeannette Wing (Columbia Data Science Institute)
    • Mark Wu (Harvard Law School)
    • Hugo Zylberberg (Columbia SIPA)
  • This conference was hosted by:

    Columbia University's School of International and Public Affairs

    For nearly 70 years, SIPA has been equipping future leaders with the skills, knowledge and intellectual curiosity to solve the world’s most critical public policy challenges. Through a rigorous and multidisciplinary curriculum, practical capstone projects and fieldwork that engage real world issues, and connections to world-renowned scholars and practitioners, SIPA students learn to make a positive difference in the world, whether in the public, private, or nonprofit sector. At home in Columbia’s prestigious university community and the global City of New York, SIPA is also a uniquely diverse, international and entrepreneurial community that brings together world leaders of diverse backgrounds, skills, and perspectives.

    SIPA recently launched a new initiative around technology and policy called ‘Tech&Policy@SIPA’. This ambitious effort fuses public policy, engineering, data science and entrepreneurship through a variety of activities, including new courses on data analytics and visualization; a Challenge Grant that invites graduate students to combine ICT and data to solve urban challenges globally; participation with Columbia Entrepreneurship in a start-up lab in lower NYC; and interdisciplinary research around internet policy issues including internet governance and cyber security. This new research is aimed at deepening collaboration at Columbia University across disciplines as well as convening interdisciplinary expert groups, such as at this Conference. By equipping the next generation of public policy students and scholars with a deeper understanding of new technology, nurturing organizations that are building novel tech-based solutions to pressing public policy problems, and supporting cutting-edge interdisciplinary research, SIPA is stimulating a host of creative endeavors at the intersection of technology and public policy.

    With support from:

    Carnegie Corporation of New York

    Carnegie Corporation of New York was established by Andrew Carnegie in 1911 to promote the advancement and diffusion of knowledge and understanding. In keeping with this mandate, the Corporation's agenda focuses on the issues that Andrew Carnegie considered of paramount importance: international peace, the advancement of education and knowledge, and the strength of our democracy.


    Microsoft Corporation is an American multinational corporation headquartered in Redmond, Washington, United States that develops, manufactures, licenses and supports a wide range of products and services related to computing. The company was founded by Bill Gates and Paul Allen on April 4, 1975. Microsoft is the world's largest software maker measured by revenues. It is also one of the world's most valuable companies.

    With the participation of:

    The Columbia Institute for Tele-Information

    The Columbia Institute for Tele-Information (CITI) is a university-based research center focusing on strategy, management, and policy issues in telecommunications, computing, and electronic mass media. Founded in 1983 at Columbia University, the institute is the first research center for communications economics, management, and policy established at a US management school. Its location in New York City provides a unique foundation for these activities. Research collaboration among academic, corporate, and public sectors is vital in analyzing the complex problems associated with managing communications enterprises, systems, and policy in environments of rapidly changing technology and regulation.

    The Data Science Institute

    The Data Science Institute at Columbia University is training the next generation of data scientists and developing innovative technology to serve society. With nearly 200-affilated faculty working in a wide range of disciplines, the Institute seeks to foster collaboration in advancing techniques to gather and interpret data, and to address the urgent problems facing society. The Institute works closely with industry to bring promising ideas to market.