Taylor Owen

Current affairs and public policy expert


Taylor Owen

How Digital Technology is Transforming Everything

Digital Media and Global Affairs Expert

What do we do when Facebook has more power than the government? How will virtual reality change our workplaces? What place does Artificial Intelligence have in our hospitals? Digital technology is transforming our world—and Taylor Owen is our guide. In thrilling talks, Taylor takes audiences on a journey through the rise of digital and the massive ramification facing our society. From public policy to the media to the business sector, he breaks down what’s changing and why—and how we can make our voices heard in the face of tremendous shifts our planet might not be quite ready for.

Taylor Owen is Assistant Professor of Digital Media and Global Affairs at the University of British Columbia, a Senior Fellow at the Columbia Journalism School and the founder, and Editor of OpenCanada.org. He was previously the Research Director of the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University where he designed and led a program studying the impact of digital technology on the practice of journalism, and has held research positions at Yale University, The London School of Economics and The International Peace Research Institute, Oslo where his work focuses on the intersection between information technology and international affairs. His Doctorate is from the University of Oxford where he was a Trudeau Scholar. He has held Banting Postdoctoral and Action Canada Fellowships and currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Center for International Governance Innovation (CIGI). 

Taylor is the author, most recently, of Disruptive Power: The Crisis of the State in the Digital Age and the co-editor of The World Won’t Wait: Why Canada Needs to Rethink its Foreign Policies (with Roland Paris) and of the forthcoming Journalism After Snowden (with Emily Bell).


You Say You Want a Revolution: How Digital Technology is Transforming Everything

We all know that digital technology has changed the world. But the deep impact of digital—the world-shaking, never-going-back-now, fundamental alterations to our way of life—is something that continues to be underestimated by government, by industry, by the people creating these technologies, and by all of us as a society.

In this far-reaching and eye-opening talk, Taylor Owen takes on digital technology as a whole. He breaks down what’s happened so far and what’s still to come. From AI to quantum computing to blockchain to biotech and much, much more, Taylor reveals the massive impact technology is having on our world. What does it mean when a digital actor like Facebook has more power to make people do things than government? What will happen when the highest employment job in the United States—ground shipping—is replaced by automation? Will a basic minimum income really solve our problems? How will the economy even function? What do we need to do to literally save the world?

Applicable to truly every industry, this talk couldn’t be more necessary right now. Taylor will astonish, educate, and inspire, leaving your audience thinking about digital technology in a whole new way.

The Reality of Fake News: Media’s Explosive Transition

The traditional media and journalism institutions of the 20th century have been radically upended. Their business models have been almost entirely disrupted, and their mode of information-creation replaced. Platforms are largely absorbing journalism, which has enabled the misinformation problem—and it’s poised to get much, much worse. How will this affect our world? And what do we need to do to stop the madness?

In this talk, Taylor Owen outlines the shifts underway in the media ecosystem, and provide a roadmap to engaging constructively in a world dominated by big data, algorithms and platforms and companies such as Vice, Buzzfeed, Facebook, and Google. It’s a must-hear for audiences interested in the social implications of these changes—particularly when it comes to our political climate.


Contact us to learn how Taylor can craft a message for your audience.

Silicon Valley has fundamentally reengineered the journalism practice, industry, and landscape.
— Taylor Owen