Clay Shirky is today’s leading voice on the social and economic impact of internet technologies. Considered one of the finest thinkers on the Internet revolution, Shirky provides an insightful and optimistic view of networks, social software and technology’s effects on society. Writing extensively about the Internet since 1996, he is the author of the best-selling “Here Comes Everybody” (Penguin Books, 2009) and “Cognitive Surplus” (Penguin Press, 2010). In “Here Comes Everybody” – selected by Guardian as one of the 100 greatest non-fiction books of all time – Shirky explores how organizations and industries are being upended by open networks, collaboration, and user appropriation of content production and dissemination. “Cognitive Surplus” reveals how new technology is changing us from consumers to collaborators, unleashing a torrent of creative production that will transform our world.
Shirky is the Vice Provost of Educational Technology at New York University (NYU). He is also a Fellow at the Berkman Center for Internet and Society, and was the Edward R. Murrow Visiting Lecturer at Harvard’s Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics and Public Policy in 2010.
Over the years, he has had regular columns in Business 2.0 and FEED, among other publications, and his writings have appeared in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Harvard Business Review, Wired, Computerworld and Foreign Affairs. In addition to writing, Shirky has a consulting practice focused on the rise of decentralized technologies, such as peer-to-peer, web services and wireless networks, that provide alternatives to the wired client/server infrastructure that characterizes the Web.
Prior to his appointment at NYU, Shirky was a partner at the Accelerator Group, an international investment company. Shirky was the original Professor of New Media in the Media Studies department at Hunter College, where he created the department’s first undergraduate and graduate offerings in new media and helped design the current MFA in Integrated Media Arts program.