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Professor Viktor Mayer-Schönberger

Professor of Internet Governance and Regulation

Viktor Mayer-Schönberger

Professor of Internet Governance and Regulation


Viktor Mayer-Schönberger is the Professor of Internet Governance and Regulation at Oxford. His research focuses on the role of information in a networked economy. Earlier he spent ten years on the faculty of Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

He has published eleven books, including the international bestseller “Big Data” (HMH, co-authored with Kenneth Cukier, translated into more than 20 languages), “Learning with Big Data” (HMH, co-authored with Kenneth Cukier) and the awards-winning “Delete: The Virtue of Forgetting in the Digital Age” with Princeton University Press (also available in multiple languages). He is the author of over a hundred articles and book chapters on the economics and governance of information.

After successes in the International Physics Olympics and the Austrian Young Programmers Contest, Mayer-Schönberger studied in Salzburg, Harvard and at the London School of Economics. In 1986 he founded Ikarus Software, a company focusing on data security and developed the Virus Utilities, which became the best-selling Austrian software product. He was voted Top-5 Software Entrepreneur in Austria in 1991 and Person of the Year for the State of Salzburg in 2000. He has chaired the Rueschlikon Conference on Information Policy in the New Economy, bringing together leading strategists and decision-makers of the new economy. In 2014 he received a World Technology Award in the law category for his work.

He is a frequent public speaker, and sought expert for print and broadcast media worldwide. He and his work have been featured in (among others) New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Financial Times, The Economist, Nature, Science, NPR, BBC, The Guardian, Le Monde, El Pais, Die Zeit, Der Spiegel, WIRED, Ars Technica, and Daily Kos. He is also on the boards of foundations, think tanks and organizations focused on studying the information economy, and advises governments, businesses and NGOs on new economy and information society issues.

In his spare time, he likes to travel, go to the movies, and learn about architecture.

Areas of Interest for Doctoral Supervision

Big data, digital economy, governance of data

Research Interests

Big Data, digital economy, institutions and governance in the data age

Positions at the OII

  • Director of Advancement of the OII, February 2012 - February 2013
  • Professor of Internet Governance and Regulation, October 2010 -
  • Visiting Fellow, November 2009 - November 2009



Integrity Statement

I currently serve as a member of the German Digital Council and the AXA Data Protection and Ethics Panel.



News & Press


Current Courses

Law and the Internet

Introducing the challenges and limitations of conventional legal institutions on the Internet (especially those administered by the State) and reinterpreting these institutions in the context of the Internet.