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Viktor Mayer-Schönberger

Best-Selling Author of Delete and Big Data and Expert on the Networked Economy
  • Developed Virus Utilities, one of the best-selling software products in Austria
  • Chair of Internet Governance and Regulation at the Oxford Internet Institute
  • Uses compelling visuals and customized speeches to illustrate how big data is changing the world
Topics & Types
AI, Machine Learning, & Big Data

Viktor Mayer-Schönberger is an expert on the role of information in the networked economy, discussing how big data is going to changes how people live, work, and think. He is also a prolific author and the professor of internet governance and regulation at the Internet Institute at Oxford University. He has been studying data privacy, governance in virtual worlds, law and entrepreneurship, e-government, and big data and is an advocate of the right to be digitally ‘forgotten’ in the form of expiration dates for personal information. An expert on information law and regulation, he advises businesses, governments, and international organizations on the new economy and information society issues.

In presentations, he shares compelling examples of organizations and industries putting big data to use and tells stories about how it has led to profoundly surprising insights and advances. He offers three shifts in today’s use of data and why more messy data shows what people need to know, even if it does not show the why. An upbeat and thought-provoking speaker, Mayer-Schönberger engages his audience by letting them experience big data’s potential.

Big Data Author. Mayer-Schönberger has written eight books, including the books, Big Data: A Revolution That Transforms How we Work, Live, and Think (2013) and Delete: The Virtue of Forgetting in the Digital Age (2009). He is also the author of more than one hundred articles and book chapters on the governance of information.

His best-selling book, Big Data, tackles what big data is, how it will change lives, and what we can do to protect ourselves from its hazards. Mayer-Schönberger argues that big data analytics are revolutionizing the way people see and process the world – and each other. Of the book, Forbes said, “What I’m certain about is that Big Data will be the defining text in the discussion for some time to come.” His other best-selling book, Delete, which has won several awards, looks at the surprising phenomenon of perfect remembering in the digital age and reveals the importance of humans’ capacity to forget. While digital technology empowers people as never before, the perfect record it creates holds unforeseen consequences.

Vast Expertise. Viktor Mayer-Schönberger founded Ikarus Software and developed Virus Utilities, which became the best-selling Austrian software product. The recipient of numerous awards for innovation and entrepreneurship, he was voted “Top Five Software Entrepreneur in Austria” in 1991 and Salzburg’s “Person of the Year” in 2000. In 1998, he joined Harvard University, where he taught at the John F. Kennedy School of Government for 10 years. After three years at Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy at the National University of Singapore, he joined the Oxford Internet Institute. Mayer-Schönberger has chaired the Rueschlikon Conference on Information Policy in the New Economy and is also the co-founder of the SubTech conference.

He is a sought-after expert for print and broadcast media worldwide, having been featured in publications and on networks like the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, the Economist, Science, WIRED, Le Monde, El Pais, Die Zeit, Der Spiegel, Ars Technica, NPR, BBC, and more.

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