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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Featured Picks from Danny Crichton

Latest from Danny Crichton

  • The Logic Of Crazy Valuations

    The Logic Of Crazy Valuations

    August is the traditional vacation month for venture capitalists, who stream out of their Sand Hill Road offices to quieter points, ostensibly to reflect on the year so far and prepare for the heavy fall fundraising season. And what a year it has been! We now have several companies valued at around $10 billion and above, including Airbnb, Dropbox, and Uber. Those valuations seem tame compared… Read More

  • Stellar, Uber, And The Rise Of Computational Trust

    Stellar, Uber, And The Rise Of Computational Trust

    How do you feel about letting strangers into your home? Our homes act as a kind of sanctuary from the outside world, a highly personal and exclusive refuge. They should be safe. While it is a commonplace in cultures throughout the world to be gracious hosts to guests, such warmth rarely extends to complete strangers at the door. Read More

  • New Study Shows The Decline Of Startups And America’s Geriatric Economy

    New Study Shows The Decline Of Startups And America’s Geriatric Economy

    A few months ago, I asked a simple question: “Can Google ever be beat?” The query was less about Google itself, and more a question about the potential of startups to disrupt the largest companies in our economy. Do we have the talent and capital infrastructure needed for nascent companies to grow and compete against mature incumbents? I argued strongly that we do not, but I based… Read More

  • With Apple’s Novel Acquisition, A Chance To Reinvent The Book

    With Apple’s Novel Acquisition, A Chance To Reinvent The Book

    Apple’s acquisition of BookLamp, a Boise, Idaho-based startup billed as a “Pandora for Books,” is a key move in the battle over the future of our printed-and-bound friends. When we combine this information with the rumors swirling around a potential smartwatch product from Apple, we can start to gaze into the future of publishing. Read More

  • How Can We Make Recruiting Better?

    How Can We Make Recruiting Better?

    Recruiting is broken. In fact, it is so broken that almost no one I have ever talked to about the subject has offered up a point of disagreement. Not one person has said, “I love recruiting” or “We find that recruiting works just great for us.” Among the Valley’s cognoscenti, today’s startup truism is that recruiting is the most important function of a… Read More

  • The Problem With Founders

    The Problem With Founders

    Feeling bored at work? Just go start a company. Feeling depressed about life and lack any direction? Just go start a company. Broke up recently? Just go start a company. Had a parent die and can’t move on? Just go start a company. (To be fair, I overheard that one last year. Apparently the idea is that you get so busy you can’t think about anything else. Grieving 2.0?) The irony of… Read More

  • Amazon Isn’t Killing Writing, The Market Is

    Amazon Isn’t Killing Writing, The Market Is

    Amazon’s war on publishers reached a crescendo yesterday with the leak of Kindle Unlimited, a subscription plan that would allow readers to pay $9.99 per month for unlimited access to the Kindle ebook library. No longer content with simply demanding steeper discounts from publishers like Hachette — which is locked in a bitter fight with the ecommerce giant over book prices… Read More

  • Silicon Valley’s Dilemma Over Credentials

    Silicon Valley’s Dilemma Over Credentials

    Silicon Valley has been heavily derided by the media these past few months, on everything from Google executives forcing senior citizens out of their homes and founders accused of sexually harassing women to startups stealing reservations and parking spots. Despite the shrill news around “JerkTech,” I believe that Silicon Valley on the whole is fundamentally a decent place, one… Read More

  • Our Polyglot Nightmare

    Our Polyglot Nightmare

    The diversity of human languages has been on the decline for decades. With the rise of globalized communications and business, the world has accelerated its shedding of unpopular languages, as speakers increasingly focus their efforts on those that afford them the most economic and social opportunities. The loss of these languages has even spawned efforts like the Endangered Languages Project… Read More

  • With Political Failures Left And Right, Tech Needs To Rethink Its Strategy

    With Political Failures Left And Right, Tech Needs To Rethink Its Strategy

    Politics is the bête noire of hackers and entrepreneurs. It lacks the precision and logic of a function in a computer program while being incredibly inefficient to boot. Taxi services have been bad for decades in cities like San Francisco thanks to local politics, but a dedicated technology startup managed to ameliorate the situation in just a handful of years. Read More

  • With Software Eating Hardware, Silicon Valley Enters “Hard” Times

    With Software Eating Hardware, Silicon Valley Enters “Hard” Times

    Software’s inevitable dominance is something of an axiom in Silicon Valley, where Marc Andreessen once famously wrote that it was “eating the world.” Software companies like Microsoft, Google and Facebook are among the world’s most iconic and valuable, and new startups like Airbnb and Uber aim to transform traditional industries like hotels and taxis. Read More

  • Going Native

    Going Native

    One of the most important debates in mobile app development has been the trajectory of the mobile web compared to native apps. The question has been whether mobile web apps can gain enough support on iOS, Android and other mobile operating systems to provide a good user experience and ultimately compete with proprietary apps. Read More

  • With Google Domains, Let’s Raise Prices And Make SSL Certificates Free

    With Google Domains, Let’s Raise Prices And Make SSL Certificates Free

    Domain registration is a bit like renewing license plates at the Department of Motor Vehicles. It’s the annual tradition for web developers to secure their address on our public Internet by filling out a bunch of paperwork, such as giving contact information for the registrant, administrator, technical contact, and billing contact (even the DMV doesn’t require four copies of… Read More

  • Three Realities About Venture Capital

    Three Realities About Venture Capital

    This week’s kerfuffle over Yo centered on many facets, but none got more attention than the nascent startup’s $1.2 million in venture capital funding. The reaction to this investment across the web came in several flavors. Founders complained that their own startups created far more value for society than an app that essentially acts as a doorbell, and yet, they had not received… Read More

  • Yo, Virginia, There Is A Cult Of Disruption

    Yo, Virginia, There Is A Cult Of Disruption

    Disruption. From frenzied investment pitches on Sand Hill Road to the name of the top conference for startups in Silicon Valley (i.e. the people who pay my bills), that word has become synonymous with everything and everyone creating innovation today. Read More

  • As Teacher Tenure Degrades, New Opportunities Emerge For Startups To Remake Education

    As Teacher Tenure Degrades, New Opportunities Emerge For Startups To Remake Education

    One of the most notable court cases of the year for startups was officially revealed last week, and there was nary a peep from much of the tech press. Last week, a California judge struck down the state’s teacher tenure laws, arguing that tenure disproportionately harms the education of students from poor and minority school districts, and is thus unconstitutional. The case was brought… Read More

  • Productivity And The Education Delusion

    Productivity And The Education Delusion

    There is a constant tension about education in labor economics these days. On one hand, education is strongly correlated with income as well as employability. Workers with college degrees, or even just some university-level courses, are significantly more likely to have a job and to be paid better, as well. This is borne out by today’s U.S. jobs report, which showed a decrease of… Read More

  • It’s The Security, Stupid!

    It’s The Security, Stupid!

    It’s 2014. Do you know where your security is? On Tuesday, Google published a full account of the current state of encryption in email, revealing that some leading providers like Comcast and France’s Orange encrypted nearly none of the email that approached its servers. The news this week seemed to confirm many of our worst fears about the state of security on the Internet (as it… Read More

  • As Software Eats Up Jobs, Startups Need To Consider Ethics Of Marketplaces

    As Software Eats Up Jobs, Startups Need To Consider Ethics Of Marketplaces

    Anger can be a deeply chilling emotion when coursing through politics, and we have witnessed our fair share of it over the past few years. In San Francisco, we watched as protesters blocked buses, broke Google Glasses and demanded billions in compensation in front of tech executives homes. Nationally, we have seen the frustration of millions across the country through the Tea Party and Occupy… Read More

  • Messaging 2.0 Is Now Over

    Messaging 2.0 Is Now Over

    The second messaging revolution is now quickly coming to a close. With the news today that Korea’s leading messenger KakaoTalk is merging with one of that country’s largest internet portals, Daum Communications, we are witnessing the end of the rise of mobile-focused independent messaging startups that started just five years ago. Only Kik Messenger remains standing… Read More

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