Open access is what makes the Internet special. It’s also what makes it – and its billions of users around the globe – vulnerable to attack. Jonathan Zittrain, the world’s leading Internet scholar, has made it his mission to protect the Internet’s promise of innovation while combating its greatest threats.

Professor of Law at Harvard Law School and the Kennedy School of Government, and Professor of Computer Science in Harvard’s School of Engineering and Applied Science, Zittrain has long studied the legal, technological and world-shaking aspects of quickly morphing virtual terrains. Co-founder and chairman of Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet and Society, Zittrain’s other breakthrough initiatives include projects to fight malware (StopBadware); to produce simple, unobtrusive but novel tools for classroom use (H2O); ChillingEffects, a site designed to support open content by tracking legal threats to individual users; Herdict, which tracks Internet censorship in real time; and, to combat link rot.

Zittrain works in several intersections of the Internet with law and policy, including intellectual property, censorship and filtering for content control, and computer security. A highly regarded speaker, Zittrain provides audiences with an inside look at how cyber terrorism, law and technology affect our lives. His dual understanding of law and technology give him insight into a range of security issues, including digital property law, technology infrastructure protection, cyber crime, privacy and free speech. His book, "The Future of the Internet – And How to Stop It" (Yale University Press, 2009), calls for rethinking the Internet to protect its openness and rescue it from forces constraining it. He also co-edited three studies of Internet filtering by national governments, all published by MIT Press: Access Denied (2008), Access Controlled (2010), and Access Contested (2011).

Zittrain leads the FCC’s Net Neutrality Advisory Committee, whose members are tasked with “tracking and evaluating the effects of the FCC’s Open Internet rules,” and making policy recommendations. He is a former member of the Board of Trustees of the Internet Society and is on the board of advisors for Scientific American. He is also on the Board of Directors of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and has been a faculty fellow and Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum, where he chaired the Global Agenda Council on the Future of the Internet.

Prior to joining Harvard, Zittrain was Professor of Internet Governance and Regulation at the Oxford Internet Institute of the University of Oxford.

Harvard Law School Faculty Page

Berkman Center for Internet & Society


Chilling Effects


Twitter: @zittrain