I'm a Lecturer in Creative & Social Computing at Goldsmiths, University of London, co-convenor for the MA/MSc in Creating Social Media, and I teach 2nd year undergraduate Social Computing. I'm co-founder and Director of Social Innovation Camp. Most days you can find me on Twitter.
After a Ph.D in Experimental Particle Physics, I worked with people with learning disabilities and as a mental health advocate. I was also active in local community campaigns. Doing particle physics had introduced me to the Internet, and I got interested in its potential for social change. I founded Multikulti, a community-led multilingual site for asylum seekers & refugees which won a Global Ideas Bank Social Innovations Award, and SocialSource, an independent collective advocating for open source in the voluntary sector. I attended the protest against the G8 in Genoa in 2001 and was among 93 people who were beaten, disappeared & tortured by Italian police. I joined Amnesty International as global web manager just as web 2.0 was emerging, and I added some oomph to their ecampaigning by introducing blogging and the use of social networks. I also wanted Amnesty to understand that the web was not just a tool but a key terrain for human rights struggle, and I headed Amnesty’s first delegation to the UN’s Internet Governance Forum. This was followed by a stint as Head of Digital for the Make Your Mark campaign, using social media to promote and support entrepreneurship, and then Head of Digital at Media for Development using participatory digital innovation as a way to empower marginalised communities. I'm a former Director of The Open Rights Group, and a consultant for Transitions Online on ways to use digital tactics for anti-corruption and good governance in Central & Eastern Europe. In 2008 I co-founded Social Innovation Camp which brings together ideas, people and digital tools to build web-based solutions to social problems in just 48 hours. Successful projects that started at Social Innovation Camp include Enabled by Design, The Good Gym and MyPolice. In 2010 I led Social Innovation Camp Caucasus with participants from Georgia, Armenia & Azerbaijan.