Michael Brennan is the technology program officer on the Internet Freedom team. He oversees a portfolio of grantees that globally address open Internet issues through a technical lens and also helps to develop and manage a technology fellows program at the foundation.
Michael has over 10 years of experience researching and advising both the private and the public sector on technology policy. He co-founded the Privacy, Security and Automation Lab at Drexel University, where he worked as senior researcher. During his tenure at Drexel, Michael served as a technologist for the Federal Trade Commission’s Division of Privacy and Identity Protection. Prior to joining the Ford Foundation in 2015, he was an associate partner at SecondMuse, an innovation strategy firm dedicated to finding collaborative solutions for large-scale problems. Michael led their Open Innovation and Internet Freedom programs as well as co-directed company operations. His work at SecondMuse included developing global social impact technology communities with institutions such as NASA and Al Jazeera, creating a research framework for discovering the communication technology needs of communities around the globe, and working with local communities and civil society organizations worldwide to produce technology-based innovations addressing issues from domestic violence to sustainable development.
Michael earned a PhD in computer science from Drexel University.