Alex Gladstein


Blockchain, Governance

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Areas of Expertise

GGC-Governance  •  Facilitator  •  Moderator  •  Opener / Closer  •  Impact  •  Ethics  •  Cryptocurrency

About Alex

Alex Gladstein is Chief Strategy Officer at the Human Rights Foundation. He has also served as Vice President of Strategy for the Oslo Freedom Forum since its inception in 2009. In his work Alex has connected hundreds of dissidents and civil society groups with business leaders, technologists, journalists, philanthropists, policymakers, and artists to promote free and open societies. Alex’s writing and views on human rights and technology have appeared in media outlets across the world including The Atlantic, BBC, CNN, Fast Company, The Guardian, The New York Times, NPR, TIME, WIRED, and The Wall Street Journal. He has spoken at universities ranging from MIT to Stanford, briefed the European Parliament and US State Department, and serves as faculty at Singularity University and as an advisor to Blockchain Capital, a leading venture firm in the fintech industry. He frequently speaks and writes about why Bitcoin matters for freedom. He currently lives in the San Francisco area, and you can reach him at alex @ He co-authored “The Little Bitcoin Book” in 2019.

The Cutting Edge of Human Rights - SU, South Africa Summit, 2017

From Wechat to Bitcoin | SingularityU South Africa Summit

Why Decentralized Technology Matters for Freedom | SingularityU Greece Summit 2018

Exponential Democracy | SingularityU Spain Summit 2019

Speaking Topics

  • Deep Dive with the Human Rights Foundation

    Come learn how you can put your skills, networks, and talents to work in the global struggle for human rights and freedom by directly impacting the work of brave activists and civil society organizers.

    Join HRF chief strategy officer and Oslo Freedom Forum vice president of strategy Alex Gladstein to discuss how — whether you are a graphic designer, blockchain developer, public relations specialist, impact investor, investigative journalist, philanthropist, visual artist, or executive business leader — you can help make the world a more free and open place.

    We’ll take a special look at the Flash Drives for Freedom movement, and learn how the award-winning campaign came together as a collaboration between individuals from many different backgrounds. Everyone has a role to play in this movement — come find yours today.

  • The Future of Money

    Paper and metal money are disappearing from the modern world. Within 10 years, virtually all finance will be digital. In many places ranging from Sweden to China to Venezuela, this is already the case. Whether it’s digital forms of fiat currency, corporate services like Apple’s new credit card, services like Venmo or China’s WeChat, or new projects like the upcoming digital money from Facebook and JP Morgan, individuals will no longer have control of or privacy in their financial transactions. Many fear that the transition to a cashless world could usher us more quickly into a global surveillance state, hampering innovation, entrepreneurship, and commerce. But what if there was a way out? In The Future of Money, we’ll discuss the history of money and the current state of global finance, and we’ll talk about the possibility of preserving financial freedom in the information age.

  • Why Decentralized Technology Matters for Freedom

    Governments throughout history have always bent technology to their advantage. Today, nation states have built staggering surveillance systems, and continue to exert more control over their citizens. Can decentralized networks like bitcoin help strengthen civil liberties and challenge this consolidation of power? HRF’s Alex Gladstein provides a tour of how technology is being used against us, and shows how it just might be the one thing that can save our privacy and freedom.

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