Robin Berjon

Versatile Technologist

Portrait of Robin Berjon

I am a versatile technologist, developer, researcher, and policy advisor with a track record of delivering projects, a solid experience in standards, Internet, and governance, and a sustained eagerness to learn.

  • Native speaker: English and French
  • French-Australian binational
  • USA E3 visa

Work Experience

Governance & Standards Lead / IPFS Ecosystem Lead  – present Protocol Labs

I work on next-generation Web architecture, seeking new approaches to digital systems that increase user agency and develop the missing layers enabling a people-centric governance of the Internet. I have been bridging novel protocols, notably IPFS and related self-certifying systems, to more traditional Web contexts.

Expert, Technology Advisory Panel  – present UK Information Commissioner's Office
Vice-Chair, Board of Directors  – present World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)
VP, Data Governance  – 2022 The New York Times

Built up a team to support continued regulatory programmes (CCPA, GDPR) as well as to establish our policy positions, developed and implemented the company's privacy strategy as well as its algorithmic ethics policy, and worked in support of its broader data, advertising, and marketing strategies. I drove our approach to reforming the online advertising ecosystem through participation in tech standards and experimentation, and worked on The Times's involvement in data policy issues. Edited the W3C TAG's Privacy Principles.

Executive Director, Data Governance  –  The New York Times

Launched the data governance programme in what is a very data intensive organisation, and ran the GDPR compliance project. Began defining what the global data ecosystem should look like if independent media is to thrive in it.

Chief Technical Officer  –

Brought scholarly publishing into the internet age based on great UX, machine learning, document semantics, and intensive data crunching through ugly formats, with major publishers as clients. Architected, built, and ran many critical components using JS, Node, CouchDB, Stripe, React, Redux, and many other moving parts. Everything running inside AWS with ZeroMQ and auto-scaling.

Editor of the HTML Specification & Head of HTML Activity  –  W3C / MIT / Keio University

Shipped the HTML5 specification (as well as a few others) and managed the W3C HTML world, trying to bring agility to standards.

Founded and launched the Web Platform Tests project to define interoperability for the whole Web (current stats: 1.8+million tests, 50k+ commits, 2,700+ contributors, deployed in CI by every major browser vendor).

Also launched the Web Incubator to open Web standards to a broader community.

Consultant, Researcher, & Developer  –  Self-employed

I carried out research, development, prototyping, or handled standards strategy for numerous companies around the world, large and small: Samsung, Vodafone, Canon, Facebook, INRIA/ERCIM, SpinTank, Expway, IGEL, Ikivo.

In 2012 I was elected to the W3C Technical Architecture Group, a small group charged with stewardship of the Web’s architecture.

Senior Software Architect  –  Joost

Joost was high-quality, P2P, legal TV. I worked building its rich UI and defining a widgets platform for third-parties to write extensions with.

Senior Research Scientist  –  Expway

I worked on creating a binary XML format, on an XML Schema processor, many XML languages, standard efforts in multiple organisations, and SVG-based UI for embedded devices.

Founder & CTO  –  Knowscape

A Web agency in the early, fast-moving years of the Web. I worked on many different projects, including an SVG map editor for the French Ministry of Infrastructure, education software for Audi-Volkswagen, glossy sites for Elle or Bordeaux, Web applications for Proximus, and much more.

Publications & Conferences

I have edited over a dozen Web standards, specified the IPFS Principles and contributed to several dozen more, on topics including formats, APIs, mobile capabilities, networking, or compression. I have published about data management in Nature Scientific Data.

I have written about how The New York Times manages privacy and how to understand privacy on the Web. I write about better futures for technology on on my blog.

I regularly participate in academic discussions, notably with the Center for Information Technology Policy (CITP) in Princeton, the Digital Life Initiative (DLI) at Cornell Tech, as well as the Berkman Klein Center at Harvard.

I have spoken at dozens of conferences over the world such as the Open Source Convention, the Oxford XML Summer School, the Web@25 celebration, the Sony Distinguished Engineers Conference, the Open World Forum, the Salon du Livre, Paris Web, or at the OECD.

A more comprehensive list is available on demand.


I pick new technologies up quickly, and when possible I contribute back.

Web: HTML, CSS, JS, TypeScript, DOM & browser APIs, IPFS, IPLD, React, ProseMirror, SVG, mobile/responsive techniques, RDFa, Microdata,, PWA, AMP, HTTP.

Data: XML, XSLT, XPath, RelaxNG, XML Schema (and several more obscure XML technologies), RDF, JSON-LD, DOCX, JATS, CouchDB, MongoDB, Postgres, MySQL, SQLite, BigQuery.

Languages: JavaScript (Node, CouchDB, browser), TypeScript, Python, some Erlang, some Rust, Perl, Java, PHP.

Misc: Jupyter, AWS, Stripe, Agile, mobile apps, Electron, reasonable (but not professional) design skills.

There is more on GitHub (as darobin, scienceai, or w3c), on npm (as scienceai or as robin.berjon), and even on CPAN.



I have taken part in the work of the Terra Nova Foundation think tank, and have written a finding with the Fondapol (Foundation for Political Innovation): Internet, politique et coproduction citoyenne (The Internet, Politics, and Coproduction by Citizens). This was republished by the Presses Universitaires de France (PUF) as part of a collective book called Innovation Politique 2012.

I enjoy writing, both fiction and non-fiction, and a lot of reading.