After an extensive search, Phet Sayo has been selected as EngageMedia’s next Executive Director. Phet brings to the organisation decades of experience in information, communications, and technology policy, internet governance, and artificial intelligence. His leadership will build on EngageMedia’s 17 years of work promoting digital rights, open and secure technology, and social issue documentary.
“I am more than honoured to be given this opportunity to be part of the EngageMedia team. The challenges posed by technology to human rights, democracy, and free expression are many in the region, and I aim to build on the EngageMedia platform to contribute to meeting those challenges with the quality of excellence it is known for”, said Phet.
Phet spent 15 years as a Senior Program Officer at the International Development Research Center (IDRC) in New Delhi, India. His work at IDRC tackled the impacts of widespread access to mobile technologies and the internet in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, engaging with policy- and decision-makers, researchers, and advocates.
Prior to IDRC, Phet led ICT for development initiatives as a programme specialist with the United Nations Development Programme. This included leading the International Open Source Network, an initiative promoting free/open source software as a viable alternative for development. More on Phet here.
“We are thrilled to welcome Phet to this role, to lead EngageMedia into the future”, said EngageMedia Board President Rachel Maher. “The organisation and our networks will benefit from his commitment to human rights, vast knowledge of digital rights and foresight on trends related to technology and society in the Asia Pacific region”.
Phet will join EngageMedia in July 2022 and take the reins as Executive Director in August. Andrew Lowenthal, EngageMedia co-founder and outgoing Executive Director, will transition from his current role and move to the EngageMedia board.
“Phet will do a fantastic job leading EngageMedia in an increasingly authoritarian digital environment. Surveillance continues to expand, privacy is increasingly eroded, and censorship continues to be normalised. Under Phet’s leadership EngageMedia will confront these critical issues, and grow our support to civil society to better combat critical digital threats to democracy and free expression”. More on Andrew’s transition here.
EngageMedia was founded in 2005 to develop an Asia-Pacific open source social issue film platform. The organisation has since evolved to lead and support advocacy on digital rights, open and secure technology, and a host of human rights and environmental issues. Click here to learn more about EngageMedia’s mission, vision, and programs.