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Events of interest to the Cyber Initiative community

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Cyber Initiative and Related events:


Yesterday, FSI Adjunct Professor and Cyber Initiative fellow Alex Stamos gave the CISAC Drell lecture on the "battle for the soul of the internet," calling for more cooperation between governments, academic researchers, and tech companies to solve cybersecurity challenges, as well as a federal data privacy law to standardize the state-by-state measures that entail duplicative compliance work. More details and a recording of Stamos' talk are at


DAO Democracy - Ralph C. Merkle. October 18th, 4-5:30pm, LKSC 120 (Medical School). 
Dr. Ralph Merkle is a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Molecular Manufacturing, and a true pioneer in various areas of engineering and computer science. In a democracy, ordinary citizens decide complex, fateful issues by voting. Recent history suggests this process is less than optimal. Analysis of voting usually concludes it provides negligible economic value to the voter. Voter turnout is therefore highly dependent on emotional factors (“rallies”, “peer pressure” and the like). Voters are often ignorant of basic facts, and are subjected to sophisticated misinformation campaigns. Half of voters are below average. Elected officials have been known to ignore their promises once in office, and the mechanisms of government are not always transparent in their operation. This combination of weaknesses makes current democracies grossly inefficient at best, and prone to catastrophic failures at worst. A combination of ideas that includes prediction markets, Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (DAOs), ideas from the wisdom of crowds and futarchy, can be combined into what might be called a DAO Democracy, a form of government that appears to solve most of these ills. 
Future Politics: Living Together in a World Transformed by Tech - Jamie Susskind. October 24, 12:45 pm - 2:00 pm, Stanford Law School Room 190
Future Politics author Jamie Susskind argues that rapid and relentless innovation in a range of technologies will transform the way we live together. Calling for a fundamental change in the way we think about politics, he describes a world in which certain technologies and platforms, and those who control them, come to hold great power over us. Future Politics challenges readers to rethink what it means to be free or equal, what it means to have power or property, what it means for a political system to be just or democratic, and proposes ways in which we can – and must – regain control. A UK barrister and writer, Susskind authored the work during his recent tenure as fellow at Harvard’s Berkman Klein Center; his experience in politics included work for major UK and US figures.
This event is free and open to the public. Registration is required - Click here to register.

Call for Papers: Stanford Blockchain Conference 2019 - The Stanford Blockchain Conference (formerly BPASE), now in its third year, brings together researchers and practitioners working on cryptographic consensus systems such as blockchains.  In these systems, design decisions have implications for the security, economic viability, and business risks.  As blockchains continue to evolve, they must be analyzed as mission-critical systems with attendant security and risk concerns.  This conference will explore new directions in blockchain design, for both public and private blockchain protocols. We are interested in all aspects of blockchain security and reliability.  We encourage submissions of both mature projects and novel early-stage work-in-progress, as well as survey and systemization of knowledge papers.
Submission instructions: Submissions can be full papers, including previously published ones, or talk abstracts, possibly including sample presentation slides.  Talks need not be finalized prior to submission, but please make sure that the submission provides sufficient detail to explain what technical content the talk will include. All submissions must be written in English, and be in PDF format. The submissions are optionally anonymous. If you choose to submit anonymously please remove all author names or affiliations in the submission document and select the appropriate option when submitting. 
Submission site:
More information, suggested topic list, and conference details:
2019-20 Stanford PACS Postdoctoral Fellowships - Applications have just opened for 1-2 year postdoctoral opportunities with the Project on Democracy and the Internet or with the Digital Civil Society Lab. For both of these fellowships, we encourage applications from candidates representing a broad range of disciplines including the social sciences, humanities, law, computer science and engineering. The deadline to apply is January 11, 2019. More information about each fellowship and the application requirements can be found below:
·        Project on Democracy and the Internet Postdoctoral Fellowship
·        Digital Civil Society Lab Postdoctoral Fellowship
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