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Mr Nick Ashton-Hart


Consultant and Advisor, UNCTAD




Nick Ashton-Hart is the senior permanent representative of the technology sector to the UN, its member-states, and the international organisations in Geneva. He has participated in multilateral policy development since 1992, been an active part of the Geneva community for 14 years and a resident for the past eight.

He came to international policy from private-sector careers in the entertainment and ICT sectors, starting in the music industry managing some of the world’s most successful and influential artists including the “Godfather of Soul” James Brown. In the tech sector he started as a Systems Administrator in the 1990s and finished up as a temporary CIO/CTO five short years later, giving him broad hands-on technology experience.

He is currently Executive Director of the Internet & Digital Ecosystem Alliance (IDEA), a Swiss NGO with the mission to ensure that for-profit and nonprofit Internet stakeholders have a voice in the multilateral policy community in Geneva. Geneva is home to 26 UN agencies and more than 50% of the international Internet policy meetings and processes that take place worldwide each year. Nick is the only person who participates across them in any representational capacity.

Prior to founding IDEA, he was Geneva Representative of the Computer & Communications Industry Association (CCIA), Director for At-Large and Senior Director for Participation and Engagement with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) and Executive Director of the International Music Managers Forum (IMMF).

He is a member of the e15Initiative Trade and Innovation Expert Group, Expert Group on the Digital Economy and Evian Group@IMD Trade Task Force. He is also one of the Board of Directors' members at MetaBrainz Foundation and a featured blogger on CircleID.