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Darlene Damm

Darlene Damm

Faculty Vice Chair, Global Grand Challenges


Darlene Damm is Vice Chair & Principal Faculty of Global Grand Challenges at Singularity University. She has spent nearly two decades leading organizations and initiatives in the field of social innovation.

In 2012 she founded DIYROCKETS, the first company to crowdsource space technology, and in 2011 was an early co-founder of Matternet, one of the world's first companies using drones for commercial transport and delivery of medical goods in the developing world.

Darlene served with Ashoka, the world's largest association of social entrepreneurs for nearly nine years where she built the organization's fundraising system (raising over $30 million per year) and led Ashoka's presence in the Silicon Valley launching major partnerships with companies such as Google, LinkedIn and Facebook. In addition, she helped launch Ashoka's StartEmpathy initiative which has scaled to over 30 countries ensuring young children grow up learning empathy and changemaking as core skills for the 21st century.

Prior to that, Darlene spent over a decade working in Vietnam, Myanmar, Indonesia, East Asia and the US on educational and economic programs that empowered youth and helped bring developing nations into the global economy.

She received her bachelor's degree in History from Stanford University and her master's degree in International Affairs from Johns Hopkins SAIS. She was a Fellow with Japan-US Community Education and Exchange and a graduate of Singularity University. She holds a patent and regularly speaks around the world and publishes on the topic of technology and social change.

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From This Author


Unleashing Some of the Most Ambitious Women on the Planet

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These New Technologies Will Be Both Powerful and Planet Friendly

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Disrupting Regulation: Robot Cars, Blockchain and Robotic Pharmacies

In recent years, regulators and lawmakers have been caught off guard by quick-moving new technologies—3D printed guns, genetically modified glowing plants, new business models for sharing economy companies and drones. As the pace of technological innovation...

Technology Doesn’t Just Erase Jobs—It Creates Them Too

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Can We Trust Robot Cars to Make Hard Choices?

The ethics of robot cars has been a hot topic recently. In particular, if a robot car encounters a situation where it is forced to hit one person or another—which should it choose and how does...

Women Working on the Frontiers of Technology

Are women starting companies in the most cutting edge fields and keeping pace with the future? Although many are now learning coding and engineering in school, working for global internet companies and building their...

Future of Work: What Skills Will Help Us Keep Pace?

From Elon Musk’s tweet that artificial intelligence may be more dangerous than nuclear weapons to the growing clamor of voices warning robots will take away our jobs, it is clear we are focusing more...

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