Tanja Aitamurto was a visiting researcher at the Program on Liberation Technology at the Center on Democracy, Development and the Rule of Law at Stanford University. In her PhD project she examined how collective intelligence, whether harvested by crowdsourcing, co-creation or open innovation, impacts incumbent processes in journalism, public policy making and design process. Her work has been published in several academic publications, such as the New Media and Society. Related to her studies, she advises the Government and the Parliament of Finland about Open Government principles, for example about how open data and crowdsourcing can serve democratic processes. Aitamurto now works as a postdoctoral fellow at the Brown Institute for Media Innovation at Stanford.
Aitamurto has previously studied at the Center for Design Research and at the Innovation Journalism Program at Stanford University. She is a PhD Student at the Center for Journalism, Media and Communication Research at Tampere University in Finland, and she holds a Master’s Degree in Public Policy, and a Master of Arts in Humanities. Prior to returning to academia, she made a career in journalism in Finland specializing in foreign affairs, reporting in countries such as Afghanistan, Angola and Uganda. She has also taught journalism at the University of Zambia, in Lusaka, and worked at the Namibia Press Agency, Windhoek.
She also actively participates in the developments she is studying; she crowdfunded a reporting and research trip to Egypt in 2011 to investigate crowdsourcing in public deliberation. She also practices social entrepreneurship in the Virtual SafeBox (http://designinglibtech.tumblr.com/), a project, which sprang from Designing Liberation Technologies class at Stanford. Tanja blogs on the Huffington Post and writes about her research at PBS MediaShift. More about Tanja’s work at www.tanjaaitamurto.com and on Twitter @tanjaaita.