Nick Ashton-Hart is the senior permanent representative of the technology sector to the United Nations, its member states and the international organizations 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 both the entertainment and information and communications technology sectors. In the music industry, he managed 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 chief information officer/chief technology officer 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 not-for-profit Internet stakeholders have a voice in the multilateral policy community in Geneva. Geneva is home to 26 UN agencies and more than 50 percent of the international Internet policy meetings and processes that take place each year. Nick is the only person who participates across them in a 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, both with the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, and executive director of the International
Music Managers Forum. 

Nick’s pro bono and advisory roles include: associate fellow of the Geneva Centre for Security Policy; senior fellow of the Diplo Foundation; member of e15Initiative Trade and Innovation Expert Group and Expert Group on the Digital Economy; member of the Evian [email protected] Trade Task Force (; and member of the board of directors for MetaBrainz Foundation, the corporate home of MusicBrainz ( He is also a featured blogger on CircleID ( and can be found @nashtonhart on Twitter. 

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