Danny Crichton

Danny Crichton

Danny Crichton is an award-winning researcher and writer on regional innovation hubs with an intense passion for building companies and building nations. He is currently a doctoral student at the Harvard Kennedy School, and a contributing writer for TechCrunch.

Founding his first company in high school, Danny was formerly an investor at General Catalyst Partners, where he engaged companies in the mobile, labor, defense and security spaces. He led the technical infrastructure for SignalFire, a data-driven talent firm, and worked on several of the firm's investments.

In 2011-2012, Danny was a Fulbright Scholar in South Korea, where he was a visiting researcher at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology in Daejeon. His research investigated the impact of Korean government policy on the engineering pipeline of new graduates between high school and the workforce, as well as the individuals and groups that have formed in the Seoul regional innovation hub. He presented his research at KAIST, the Korean-American Education Commission (KAEC), Samsung's Global Strategy Group, and on the Korean radio station Arirang.

Before leaving the United States, he worked in product management at Google, where he conceived and launched Google+ Search.

While at Stanford University in California, Danny wrote an award-winning thesis on the history of Silicon Valley and Stanford's Department of Computer Science, developing a novel ecosystem-based model to analyze the unique development of the world's most recognized regional innovation hub. He presented the paper at the Triple Helix Conference, one of the largest research organizations devoted to building regional innovation throughout the world.

He has been quoted in The New York Times, Forbes, New York Magazine, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, BusinessInsider, as well as by the National Academies of Science.

Danny graduated with honors and Phi Beta Kappa from Stanford University with a B.S. in Mathematical and Computational Science.

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Latest from Danny Crichton

  • Fighting Distractions Should Be Top Resolution For 2015

    Fighting Distractions Should Be Top Resolution For 2015

    BING the head of Sony Pictures is talking about CLICK my friend just uploaded a photo to Face BING the wreckage of the AirAsia flight PLOP Danny, are you around for dinner? We are thinking DING Try out the new version of our app CLICK the weather today will be PING Danny, we have a brilliant idea for a startup and we are launching on Kickstarter. BUZZ. Game over. The first minutes after waking… Read More

  • Actually, Our Greatest Hopes Lie With Techies

    Actually, Our Greatest Hopes Lie With Techies

    For all the stories of 2014, few got the attention of the press like the tension between San Francisco residents and the rising tide of engineers and startup founders who started calling the city their home. Accused of driving up rents for apartments as well as blocking bus stops, these techies have been under constant criticism from locals who see these newcomers enjoying the city without… Read More

  • From Internet To Internets

    From Internet To Internets

    Over the past few days, China has blocked access to servers required to use Gmail through its Great Firewall. Earlier this month, Spain passed a law that requires Google to pay fees to publishers for every single snippet of a news article the company uses with Google News. Russia blocked the websites of several of Vladimir Putin’s critics, and also convinced Facebook to block the page of… Read More

  • How Many Millions Should I Take From My Startup?

    How Many Millions Should I Take From My Startup?

    Dear Danny, I am a young founder currently finishing a fundraising process and have multiple term sheets at absurd valuations with no expectation of offering board seats. I am trying to find ways to distinguish between these offers, and I recently heard that some of my best friends are using VCs like ATMs, and taking millions off the table through secondary offerings. I only fly first class… Read More

  • On Immigration, Engineers Simply Don’t Trust VCs

    On Immigration, Engineers Simply Don’t Trust VCs

    In an essay posted on his website, Paul Graham, the co-founder and former head of YCombinator, loudly called for an increase in skilled immigration. Writing with an intensity that is unusual in his writing, Graham argued that “The US has less than 5% of the world’s population. Which means if the qualities that make someone a great programmer are evenly distributed, 95% of great… Read More

  • What 2014 Tech Products Made The Mom Cut?

    What 2014 Tech Products Made The Mom Cut?

    Anthropology is the study of humans, and little fascinates me more than watching humans interact with technology. We express such a broad range of emotions when we use our gadgets and devices, from delight at a beautiful user experience to deep anger at error screens and lost data. It’s like those videos of monkeys using tools to open up nuts, except far closer to home. For the five of… Read More

  • Following Charges, Uber Confronts Its Asian Dilemma

    Following Charges, Uber Confronts Its Asian Dilemma

    The extent governments are willing to go to crack down on Uber has reached a new high-water mark yesterday after Korean prosecutors charged Travis Kalanick, the co-founder and CEO of Uber, of violating local transportation laws. If he were convicted, the punishment could include fines, and perhaps a first for the company and its leadership, a possible jail sentence. Uber has said in a… Read More

  • The Tech Stocks You Shouldn’t Have Owned This Year

    The Tech Stocks You Shouldn’t Have Owned This Year

    It’s that time of the year again. Parents are buying presents for their children, mobile device fanatics are arguing over iOS and Android, and investors are clearing out their portfolios before the end of the year to make their tax rebate checks just a little bit fatter. 2014 hasn’t been a good year for tax harvesting specialists. With the S&P 500 up 12% and the NASDAQ up just… Read More

  • Influencer Marketing Is Killing Santa

    Influencer Marketing Is Killing Santa

    It’s the final week of the Christmas season, and the holiday shopping advertisements are flowing through my inbox faster than startup pitches. While endorsements from celebrities occasionally show up, there is one uber-influencer that seems to appear more than any other. Jolly St. Nick, the rotund and red-clothed Santa character partially popularized by Coca-Cola, has traditionally been… Read More

  • In War With Publishers, Tech Companies Take Wrong Approach

    In War With Publishers, Tech Companies Take Wrong Approach

    Publishers have been offered a seriously raw deal in the war over content on the internet. Linking to another site is free, and there are few revenue sharing agreements between publishers and technology companies. Supported throughout the development of the internet by leading companies like Yahoo, Google, and Facebook, what might be termed the American model of content has largely won out… Read More

  • After Sony, Every Startup Should Prepare For War

    After Sony, Every Startup Should Prepare For War

    The battle between Sony and what the FBI believes are North Korean hackers may be at its end, but the war for the security of the enterprise is just getting started. Companies have been rapidly transitioning their legacy systems to modern IT technology like cloud services, hoping to save money and improve performance in an increasingly competitive world. And while security has always been one… Read More

  • The Algorithm Economy Heads To Amazon

    The Algorithm Economy Heads To Amazon

    Holidays are a time for families to come together, catch up over great food and drinks, and determine all the technical problems that need solving throughout the house. Indeed, for children growing up in the digital age, the holidays ultimately boil down to free (or more accurately, meal-subsidized) technical support for our most cherished loved ones. Kids: Amazon has you covered. Well, almost. Read More

  • SF Has An S&M Problem

    SF Has An S&M Problem

    It’s a Friday night, and I am on the prowl. I’m with my friend Edgar, and we are looking for evidence of the increasing S&M problem among the denizens of America’s startup capital. We all know the story the past few months: it’s really bad right now, but don’t worry, everything will get better in time. But it is not getting better, and it’s time to call… Read More

  • Meet Your New Boss, Mr. Algorithm

    Meet Your New Boss, Mr. Algorithm

    Meet Algo, your new boss. It’s flexible, willing to change work schedules so you can work when you want, and not when you don’t. It’s reasonable, providing you honest feedback without the politics of your last human boss. And Algo will find new projects for you to complete, so you always have something interesting to work on while receiving a paycheck. The best part is… Read More

  • The MBAs Are Fleeing, Should SF Be Worried?

    The MBAs Are Fleeing, Should SF Be Worried?

    Bubble, bubble, bubble. Are we in one, are we already done with one, are we getting closer to one? These questions have the dual benefit of being completely impossible to answer while having a high enough salience to tech readers to ensure that the almighty advertising machine gets stoked for another cycle. Let’s throw some more coal into the fire. We already had our massive discussion… Read More

  • Fundraising Acceleration Is The New VC Investment Thesis

    Fundraising Acceleration Is The New VC Investment Thesis

    There was a quite a jolt on Friday from the news that Slack, a company whose eponymous enterprise communications platform was first publicly launched this year, raised $120 million in new venture funding from KPCB and Google Ventures. Even more eye-popping was the valuation: $1.12 billion. Although Slack pivoted from an earlier incarnation as a games company called Tiny Speck, such a growth… Read More

  • Are American Tech Companies Disloyal?

    Are American Tech Companies Disloyal?

    FBI Director James Comey had some choice words this week for startups and technology companies about their increasing use of encryption and their responsibilities to law enforcement. Speaking at Brookings, Comey argued that “…if the challenges of real-time interception threaten to leave us in the dark, encryption threatens to lead all of us to a very dark place.” He… Read More

  • The Year Of The Corporate Divorce

    The Year Of The Corporate Divorce

    It’s been a good time to be a corporate marriage counselor, and an even better time to be a corporate divorce attorney. Just in the last two weeks, we learned that eBay was spinning off PayPal into its own company, HP is going to split up its consumer hardware and corporate services into separate companies, and Symantec will cut itself in half as well. Like two embittered high school… Read More

  • As The Valley Burns Up, Boston Readies Its Next Act

    As The Valley Burns Up, Boston Readies Its Next Act

    You wouldn’t think that you could fix the bicycle. It’s just two wheels, a seat, and a set of pedals, plus or minus some fancy materials and high-quality tuning. But for the engineers and designers at Cambridge-based Superpedestrian, that base is just the start for what they hope will be the next generation of urban transit. Reinventing the bike may be good business, but it is also… Read More

  • What $1 Million Won’t Buy You

    What $1 Million Won’t Buy You

    What’s the value of talent today in Silicon Valley? This year, a startup with revenues of $10 million wanted to find a new chief executive following its Series B raise and offered $450,000 in compensation (5% of revenues). Another startup, quickly growing and approaching an IPO, did a search for a CEO to lead it onto the public markets. In addition to a hefty compensation package, the… Read More